Based on the true story of Lindy Chamberlain: During a camping trip to Ayers Rock in outback Australia, she claims she witnessed a dingo taking her baby daughter, Azaria, from the family tent. Azaria's body is never found. After investigations and two public inquests, she is charged with murder. The case attracts a lot of attention, turning it into a media sideshow.
|Release Date||:||November 11, 1988|
|Production Company||:||Warner Bros., Golan-Globus Productions, Cannon Entertainment, Cinema Verity|
|Production Countries||:||Australia, United States of America|
|Writers||:||John Bryson, Robert Caswell, Fred Schepisi|
|Casts||:||Meryl Streep, Sam Neill, Dale Reeves, David Hoflin, Jason Reason, Michael Wetter, Kane Barton, Trent Roberts, Jane Coker, Rae-Leigh Henson, Nicolette Minster, Debra Lawrance, John Howard|
|Plot Keywords||:||camping, campsite, court case, nightmare, baby-snatching, private life, australia, innocence, grief, jail, trial, wild animal, courtroom, dingo|
Some movies seem to be made before we are ready for them. As I watched this film, made in 1988, in 1999, I thought I was watching the O.J. Simpson debacle (although I have very different opinions about the innocence of the individuals in each situation).
The Australian news media, if this movie is to be believed, devoured the case of a possible infanticide and truth was left as an afterthought. It was scary to see the scenes of invasive, swarming media hordes, ridiculous accounts of half-truths and lies and debates over the supposed merits of the case by persons at all levels of society.
Equally appalling is the media's depiction as indifferent and uncomprehending of the technical information in the case. I do wish more was made of the issue of religious prejudice in the case (the accused are Seven-Day Adventists).
Today these circuses have become common but that makes the lesson only more important.
Streep is excellent as usual, and this is the best I've ever seen Sam Neill. The Aussie accents get a bit thick at times but not incomprehensible.