I went along to see this film for a number of reasons. I had heard Robyn Davidson talk about the film which was due to come out. I had read with some interest that she was born and raised on a cattle farm in Queensland and she had gone to a boarding school in Brisbane. Her family life, though not unhappy, was filled with trauma. I had understood how much of a nomad she felt she was in her youth and how this single act had been so central to her life at the time. It took some time for her to put pen to paper but when she did she achieved something quite unique.
Many years after the walk and the book, this film has come to capture this adventure. I was curious to see how the director would have handled the story. I was keen to see the Australian desert, the vast expanses of brush, the changing landscape and I was not disappointed. There are spectacular scenes in the film and above all you get up close and personal with feral Camels which are a hoot to watch.
Here was a 27 year old girl attempting to walk from Alice Springs to the Indian Ocean with four camels and a dog.
I can only imagine how difficult and how physically exacting the whole thing was for her - and the interesting thing about the film is that I felt this came over quite well. It was not romanticised or stylised. John Curran as director did a great job. Adam Driver as Rick Smolan, the photographer, from National Geographic, and Mia Wasikowska are very well cast. Mia with her waif like body, hair and face lend herself so well to playing Robyn. She is natural and lovely in her relationship with her precious dog and the camels she comes to rely on. This is a story that has translated well onto the screen. There is a simplicity to the story and a purity in it that comes over and one which I was happy to have watched and thoroughly enjoyed. Robyn Davidson described it in an interview as :
"An Adventure of the mind, or to use an old-fashioned word, the spirit."