Australia is a bloody huge country, one you wouldn’t want to get lost in, or have to search for someone in. But this is exactly what a couple have to do when their teenage daughter decides to run away with thousands of dollars she stole from them. Looking For Grace is the latest film from the director of Japanese Story, another film set in the Australian outback, and this will be aptly released on Australia Day.
Confused teenager Grace (Odessa Young) decides to run away from home to get away from problems in the family, which naturally worries her parents Denise (Radha Mitchell) and Dan (Richard Roxburgh), who hire an old retired detective Tom (Terry Norris) to help them search for her.
Looking For Grace is told through the different points of view of all the main characters on how Grace running away affected them. It is a slow paced film that matches the slow pace of the country towns Grace travels through on her journey across WA. Besides the fear parents face when their children are concerned, the film also deals with other domestic fears, such as adultery, trying to keep a struggling family together, and aging (the old detective coming out of retirement for this one job, although the film didn’t completely make it clear why he’s doing this for people he doesn’t know).
The cinematography is a highlight of the film, capturing the beautiful scenery of the Western Australian outback, making this a road trip movie. The somewhat eerie quietness, dull colours and empty spaces in the houses suggests the people living together are distant from one another, despite living together.
Even though this may sound like a glum movie, there are plenty of laughs to be had throughout, from people misunderstanding one another (often regarding sex) and couples nitpicking with each other over the most minor things. The film is really a comedy of errors, a road trip movie and a domestic drama all rolled into one. Looking For Grace is an Australian film that shows off the country’s beautiful landscape, as well as the tribulations of day to day life that is definitely worth seeing.
Originally published here at milkbarmag.com on Tuesday 19 January 2016