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The Book of Revelation

Book of Revelation, The (Ana Kokkinos, 2006) wr. Andrew Bovell, Ana Kokkinos, prod. Al Clark, Wildheart Zizani, FFC funding 2004, novel Rupert Thomson; Tom Long, Anna Torv, Greta Scacchi, Colin Friels, Deborah Mailman; erotic thriller; shooting Melbourne from 8 March 2005; a dancer at the peak of his powers disappears for twelve days, then returns just as mysteriously; Australian release 7 September 2006

I completely missed the point of this. I thought it was a mystery thriller, and that one of women who abduct Tom Long's character was his girlfriend. And it is indeed the same actress (Anna Torv) - but that turns out to be beside the point - which is sexual politics.

In what turned out to be his last feature film, Tom Long gives an intense and enormously courageous performance.

The film is a murky thing, descending into pretentious melodrama as it feeds us a succession of erotic flashbacks to Daniel's time in captivity. It walks a thin line between pornography and seriousness as unsteadily as an inebriate trying to appear sober. Philip French, The Guardian.

The lord of the dance becomes the sex slave of his audience in this kinky drama from Australian director Ana Kokkinos. Baring his soul (and nether regions), on-screen actor Tom Long (The Dish) plays a renowned Melbourne dancer who's abducted, chained up and raped by three hooded women. Stylising the gender reversal with a liberal dash of arty theatricality, Kokkinos delivers an erotic thriller that can't decide whether to let the blood flow to its crotch or its brain. Jamie Russell, BBC.

The gulf between prose and cinema is nowhere better demonstrated than in this film, which picks up the book and converts the vague, word-driven images that are conjured up by the writer into the framed, moving images of hard core intensity used by filmmakers. The result is a hard edged and yet diffused version of a complex experience. It's certainly cinematic, from the camerawork to the editing, the music and the direction, and the intensity of the central character's experience is clamped by the frame, which helps to concentrate it. Andrew L. Urban, urbancinefile.

References and Links

Two outstanding students wrote (independently) about this film as part of their work for assessment in the course unit Australian Cinema:

Shona Pauly

Benjamin Marwick

Garry Gillard | New: 26 September, 2017 | Now: 23 January, 2020