Jindabyne Readers of Raymond Carver short stories and fans of Robert Altman's Short Cuts will find the core of Jindabyne familiar: Buddies on a fishing holiday… Jindabyne Readers of Raymond Carver short stories and fans of Robert Altman's Short Cuts will find the core of Jindabyne familiar: Buddies on a fishing holiday… 2007-04-27 R PT123M Drama Mystery and Thriller Gabriel Byrne Laura Linney John Howard Sony Pictures Classics
Movie Review

Jindabyne (2007)

MPAA Rating: R
A WHALE OF A TALE Byrne and Linney contend with disaster in Jindabyne , based on a Carver story about some Aussie fishing buddies who…
Image credit: Matt Nettheim
A WHALE OF A TALE Byrne and Linney contend with disaster in Jindabyne, based on a Carver story about some Aussie fishing buddies who get caught in the wake of a murder
EW's GRADE
B

Details Limited Release: Apr 27, 2007; Rated: R; Length: 123 Minutes; Genres: Drama, Mystery and Thriller; With: Gabriel Byrne and Laura Linney; Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics

Readers of Raymond Carver short stories and fans of Robert Altman's Short Cuts will find the core of Jindabyne familiar: Buddies on a fishing holiday find the dead body of a woman in the river and finish their trip before contacting the police, to the particular outrage of one fisherman's wife. In relocating Carver's spare morality tale ''So Much Water So Close to Home'' to director Ray Lawrence's (Lantana) homeland of Australia, he and screenwriter Beatrix Christian have upped the moral stakes precariously by adding racism into the reckoning — the dead woman is aboriginal, the men white.

That's a lot to take on, mixed in with issues of abortion, mental illness, religious faith, and communal psychology. (There's also the creepy horror-flick presence of a Scary Psycho in a Truck Who Kills Women Driving Alone.) And Jindabyne — named for the lakeside town in which the troubles spill — can't contain all that the filmmakers want to throw in. Best to keep glued to the taut performance by Laura Linney as Claire, wife of one of the fishermen (Gabriel Byrne) and a woman moved to dramatic acts of atonement.

Originally posted Apr 16, 2007 Published in issue #931-932 Apr 27, 2007 Order article reprints