ALL MY FRIENDS ARE LEAVING BRISBANE
Australia, 2007, 76 minutes, Colour.
Charlotte Gregg, Matt Zeremes, Ryan Johnson, Cindy Nelson, Sarah Kennedy.
Directed by Louise Alston.
All My Friends Are Leaving Brisbane is a short feature, small-budget, but looking at twentysomethings who work in Brisbane. Charlotte Gregg as Anthea is the centre of this group, having Michael (Matt Zeremes) as her best friend and confidant. Neither of them realise that they are in love with each other even though they have been friends for seven years. Anthea wonders about her future and decides to go to England to work. Michael is a non-decider and simply broods about what might happen. There are a number of of other character friends, voicing different attitudes towards life, relationships, work. The film concludes with a marriage ceremony at which Anthea and Michael have to make some decisions – and it seems that they will make the wrong decisions until the last moment.
Well observed, showing something of the life of ordinary young Australians at the beginning of the 21st century, a comment on life in Brisbane and other Australian cities.
The director, Louise Alston, had made some shorts before this first feature and went on to make another feature, Jucy (described as a ‘womantic’ comedy) with the same screenwriter, Stephen Vagg.
1. Small-budget film? Interesting and entertaining? Character study? Situations of twentysomethings in an Australian city at the beginning of the 21st century?
2. The Brisbane setting, the skylines, the parks, offices, homes? Authentic feel? The musical score?
3. The film’s focus on Anthea, young woman, past relationships, seeing her at work and not liking her work, imposed upon by a fellow worker, almost ignored by the boss? Her discussions with Michael, during the lunch and in the park, building him up? Platonic friendship? Each the other’s confidant? Anthea and her looking for relationships, Michael’s comments on her ex-boyfriends? Their exploitative approach to her? Flatting with Kath, the decision to go overseas, the reaction at work? Her plans, timing? The build-up to the wedding, the present, her going, encountering Michael, his not talking? The talk together, the kiss, her leaving, his not saying anything, following the taxi? The reconciliation – and the future?
4. Michael, his work, shyness, his friendship with Anthea, over the years, their discussing everything? The encounter with Simone, in the office, her helping him? His imagination? His dating her, girlfriend? Yet the tension, Simone, wanting to meet other people? Going to the wedding, the break-up, his sulking? The encounter with Anthea, following her in the taxi?
5. Simone, at work, relationship with Michael, with others? The wedding? Kath, her advice to Anthea, her own falling in love, putting off the trip to England?
6. The contrast with the men, Tyson and his macho attitudes? Jake as the ex-boyfriend?
7. The peripheral characters, the sketches of young people in Brisbane? Their talk about Brisbane? Their hopes, relationships? Expectations for their life?