THE DRY (2020)

Small town murder mystery against the backdrop of Australian drought.

A well constucted thriller with solid performances, great cinematography and a permeating hostile atmosphere overlaying the modern case with a unsolved death in the town 25 years earlier.

The dry, dead isolation of inner coastal Australia is on full display, with dusty wide empty expanses and a penetrating, tinderbox feeling of heat and impending ruin. The town has known hardships, and those that live there are stretched thin.

For them, a second tragedy might be the tipping point that finally destroys the community, and Aaron (Eric Bana) returning to town only serves to open old wounds.

Not more to add that wouldn’t verge on spoilers, so if you know this is your genre fare you can’t go wrong with this one.


RELIC (2020)

A haunted house where the ghosts are the ravages of old age.

Brilliant production design and great performances, a spookfest drawn from slow and creeping dread rather than jumps and frights.

Also great to see yet another solid entry into the quality Australian horror canon — another argument for support of the arts that’s so frequently lacking.

Slow and contemplative, unsettling and sad.