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This sensual and striking chronicle of a disappearance and its aftermath put director Peter Weir on the map and helped usher in a new era of Australian cinema. Based on an acclaimed 1967 novel by Joan Lindsay, Picnic at Hanging Rock is set at the turn of the 20th century and concerns a small group of students from an all-female college who vanish, along with a chaperone, while on a St. Valentine’s Day outing. Less a mystery than a journey into the mystic, as well as an inquiry into issues of class and sexual repression in Australian society, Weir’s gorgeous, disquieting film is a work of poetic horror whose secrets haunt viewers to this day.
This screening includes a special introduction by author Peggy Orenstein.
“Though Picnic at Hanging Rock has immense feeling for an interest in the Australian landscape, it is anything but a picturesque or provincial film. Among other things it knows that there are some romantic longings, especially in the young, that are so overwhelming they simply cannot be contained. The result is a movie that is both spooky and sexy.” —Vincent Canby, The New York Times
Running time: 107 min
Director: Peter Weir
Producers: Hal McElroy, Jim McElroy
Writer: Cliff Green
Cinematographer: Russell Boyd
Editor: Max Lemon
With: Rachel Roberts, Vivean Gray, Helen Morse, Kirsty Child, Jacki Weaver
Print Source: Janus Films
Films and schedules may be subject to change.