On Australia Day 1988, over 20 film crews across the country filmed from midnight to midnight, searching behind the curtain of the official celebrations to reveal the thoughts and attitudes of ordinary Australians.Australia Daze is an authentic, kaleidoscopic, entertaining and critical portrait of a nation. Often humorous but sometimes disturbing, the film examines the way Australians see themselves, each other and the future.
The film explores the way Australians spent Australia Day 1988, some in celebration, others in protest and a number ignoring its historical significance completely. Some question what Australia has to celebrate or see it as a time for serious reflection, while many full of patriotic fervour just enjoy the carnival atmosphere.We witness a variety of responses from across the country and across the social and economic spectrum; a parade in a small town, a street party in the suburbs, the aboriginal population’s response to the day and the exploits of the super rich on a power launch in Sydney Harbour.As a result, we are made aware of the enormous economic and social differences that exist in Australian society as well as the prejudices and diverse values held.
This movie is a triumph … Bill Collins
A sweeping panorama of a vast country … David Stratton