ONE NIGHT THE MOON
By Aimee Hanafiah
PART 1 - Film Information
Paul Kelly - Father
Kaarin Fairfax - Mother
Memphis Kelly - Emily Ryan
Kelton Pell - Tracker Albert Yang
Ruby Hunter - Albert Yangâs wife
Chris Haywood - The Sargeant
David Field - Allman
Director and Co-writer - Rachel Perkins
Director of Photography - Kim Batterham
Production Designer - Sarah Stollman
Costume Designer - Zed Dragojlovich
Composers - Kev Carmody, Paul Kelly, Mairead Hannan
Musical Director - Mairead Hannan
Art Director - Rob Webb
Editor - Karen Johnson
Writer - John Romeril
Executive Producer - Kevin Lucas
Producers - Aanya Whitehead, Paul Humfress, Kevin Lucas
Music Arts Dance Film Festival in Association with the Australian Film Commision, New South Wales Film & Television Office, South Australian Film Corporation, Australian Broadcasting Corporation & Opera Australia.
Release Date - 11th of August 2001
Running Time - 57 mins
New York International Independent Film & Video Festival Awards 2001
Winner - Best Musical - Rachel Perkins
Winner - Best Cinematography in a short film - Kim Batterham
Australian Film Institute (AFI) Awards 2001
Winner - Best Cinematography in a Non-Feature Film - Kim Batterham
Winner - Best Original Score - Mairead Hannan, Kev Carmody, Paul Kelly
Australian Writerâs Guilds 2001 AWGIE Awards
Winner - Best TV Original - John Romeril with Rachel Perkins
Winner - The Golden AWGIE - John Romeril with Rachel Perkins
Australian Cinematographic Society (ACS) 2001
Winner - Gold Award - Kim Batterham
2001 IF Awards - The Australian Peopleâs Choice Awards
Nominated - Best Director - Rachel Perkins
Nominated - Best Editing - Karen Johnson
Berlin International Film Festival, Germany, February 2002
Sundance Film Festival, UtahUSA, January 2002
Moondance International Film Festival, ColoradoUSA, January 2002
Hawaii International Film Festival, HawaiiUSA, November 2001
New York International Independent Film & Video Festival, USA, November 2001
Mid Valley Film Festival, CaliforniaUSA, 2001
BrooklynAcademy of Music (BAM) Festival, New YorkUSA, October 2001
Melbourne International Film Festival, Australia, August 2001
Brisbane International Film Festival, Australia, August 2001
Message Sticks Festival - Opening Night Film of Blak Screen/Blak Sounds Film Festival, Australia, June 2001
Part 2 - Critical Review of Film and Literature
This film is based on events that occurred in 1932. It is about a girl, Emily Ryan (Memphis Kelly) who overnight ran away and went missing within the Australian landscape. The father (Paul Kelly) went to get help for his daughter does not want an aboriginal tracker, Albert Yang (Kelton Pell) involved in the search party for his daughter. His decision caused a tragic ending that lead to the girlâs death. Months later, the mother (Kaarin Fairfax) asks for Albertâs help and eventually found the girls body. Itâs a simple tragic film that raises the issue of racism. The story grows deeper and deeper through the music and visuals. Originally the idea comes from a documentary Black Tracker that depicts the real life story of Tracker Riley. It follows the narrative aspects of moviemaking but also add the elements of music to make it more interesting.
The way the director, Rachel Perkins, developed the storyline is extraordinary because she told it in a way not through the normal dialogue style but rather as a musical drama. The story is told through the music that earned an award from Australian Film Award for best original score.
Rachel Perkins uses the style of slow motion for the fantasy scene of the girl running towards the moon and flashbacks and focuses on scenery and the nature. The title song of ÎOne Night The Moonâ was the only scene where it shows the family is happy and together singing the lullaby.Throughout the film, there is much tension between the father and mother because the mother sensed that Albert could be of some help in the search because he is a professional tracker. The father refuses because the thought of it seems to threaten his searching skills and he wouldnât let a black man within his grounds. The symbolic element that showed Albert could have saved the girl is the image of the manâs hands trying to grab hold of a girlâs hands.
According to scriptwriter John Romeril, the film raises a timely ongoing social issue and that there is a cost to pay for racism. For example, because of the fatherâs refusal of letting a professional tracker who happens to be a Blackman costs the life of his daughter.
Paul Kellyâs performance is remarkable because he co-wrote the song and he played the part of the father well. The music that the actors and actresses sing in the movie was pre-recorded before the shooting of the film. During the shooting of the film they were lip syncing with the music.
Overall, to me the music is well made and it gives a sense of realism socially and environmentally. The film relived the era of 1930âs and maintain the scenery effect of Australianness in the film with background effect of the sound of didgeridoo and the landscape as well.
This film is considered as a musical film because the movie is telling the story through the music. The music tells the story without any dialogues. It is way of telling a story and to prove a purpose. This film is remarkable in bringing up the issue raised and the way it is presented.
I started conducting my research for this paper by borrowing the DVD copy of this film. In the DVD it has most of the reference and materials that I needed. I also went online to gain more access and find more information on the film.
REFERENCES and BIBLIOGRAPHY
1) DVD of One Night the Moon