For a while now, I've been wanting to see Baz Luhrmann's follow-up to Moulin Rouge!, 2008's Australia. Obviously, I didn't get around to it for a while. I wish I would've thought to double-check the running time before I started though, not that it necessarily dragged, but I felt the effect of thinking, "When's this gonna be over?" simply because I didn't realized it was like three hours long. However, the Baz's signature of gorgeous visuals and equally beautiful music combined with epic storytelling make this a great film. I think the time does hurt it though. If I had been up for it, I might've tried watching it again before it I had to return it to the library simply to plot out the individual "acts" for surely this film plays as such. Act I is all at Faraway Downs, the property of Nicole Kidman's character (you get to see her on a horse ranging cattle!), Act II is stuff in town, Act III is the war, I guess (again, didn't really have time to contemplate it but it's certainly worth the view).
Really my only problem with the film is its pacing, which can seem pretty fast before it slows down only to pick back up at a rather slower momentum near the end (not slow, but noticeably different from the first act). Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman, and David Wenham make the grade as fantastic protagonists/antagonists, respectively, and newcomer Brandon Walters as the aboriginal child taken in by Kidman is a darling. I don't know if that's actually him singing or not, but it's gorgeous; I will definitely have to get the soundtrack. (Additionally, Legend of the Seeker fans will get a kick out of Bruce Spence's cameo...I got a chuckle anyway, as I often do when I find a familiar face in a place most unexpected.) It may not make you cry like King Kong's three hour epic, but this film is still certainly moving, and for those like me with hardly any knowledge of Australian history, it's also educational as far as The Land of Auz's version of WWII and racism between whites and aboriginals. I also particularly loved how the mythology of Auz was worked in (but you'll see what I mean when you watch it...I still have to digest it for my part).
I really like both of these trailers, and it's better quality than what YouTube offers, so take your pick.