Review: “Walkabout” Ltd Ed
Blu-ray: Walkabout (1971)
The children, a girl (Jenny Agutter) and her brother (Luc Roeg the director’s son) are literally left in the sheering heat of the Australian outback. Thankfully they come across a young indigenous Aborigine boy (the always magnificent David Gulpilil in his first acting role) who is on ‘walkabout’; a rite of passage for some aborigine boys. Gulpilil couldn’t speak a lot of English at the time and in the film he communicates through his own language, through nature and a sense of almost ethereal spiritualism.
The friendship between white boy and black boy (no one has a name in this film) and the tender images of sexual awakenings between girl and black boy juxtapose the cruelty and harshness of the landscape. But there are many ‘messages’ in this film, the loss of innocence, modernisation overtaking nature, it could even have some religious overtones.
The imagery is still a joy to watch, long shots of the sun setting over the outback, ants crawling out of sand dunes, a lush muddy oasis and stark and lush nature and this new 4k scan from Second Sight is gorgeous, instilling a sense of heat and total isolation that is palpable.
Slow paced and shot with intimate care by Nicolas Roeg, Walkabout’s sense of being a part of nature and the children’s battle for survival is already known as a cinema classic, it is definitely one of those that you do need to see.
There are a lot of new extras as part of this release, all of which are a fantastic addition to the film. The narration by Luc Roeg and David Thompson offers so many insights into the actual making of the film and thankfully is a very enjoyable listen. Luc talking about his dad is delightful. All the new interviews, particularly Jenny Agutter’s are wonderful. The only cast member missing is Gulpilil who retired last year from illness.
A wonderful film and a fantastic release from Second Sight. A must buy for all film fans.
- Brand new 4k scan and restoration
- A new audio commentary with Luc Roeg and David Thompson
- Producing Walkabout: a new interview with Producer Si Litvinoff
- Luc’s Walkabout: a new interview with Luc Roeg
- Jenny in the Outback: a new interview with Jenny Agutter
- Remembering Roeg: a new interview with Danny Boyle
- 2011 BFI Q&A with Nicolas Roeg, Jenny Agutter and Luc Roeg
- Archive introduction by Nicolas Roeg
- English SDH subtitles for the hearing impaired
Limited Edition Contents
- Limited Edition Box Set of only 3,000
- Rigid slipcase with new artwork by Michael Boland
- The source novel ‘Walkabout’ with cover artwork excusive to this release
- Soft cover book featuring facsimile copy of the original 65 page First Draft Script with preface by Daniel Bird
- Soft cover book with new essays by Sophie Monks Kaufman, Simon Abrams and Daniel Bird plus stills and lobby card images
Review by Tina from a disc kindly supplied by Second Sight films via Aim Publicity.