Somersault

Somersault

Director: Cate Shortland

Cast: Abbie Cornish, Sam Worthington, Lynette Curran

     
 

Heidi (Abbie Cornish) is a pretty teenager who leaves home after getting caught making out with her mother's boyfriend. She impulsively travels to Jindabyne, a snowy ski resort town, because she once met a man from there who said she should call him if she was ever in town. When that connection doesn't materialize, Heidi is forced to fend for herself with little money… See more details below

Overview

Heidi (Abbie Cornish) is a pretty teenager who leaves home after getting caught making out with her mother's boyfriend. She impulsively travels to Jindabyne, a snowy ski resort town, because she once met a man from there who said she should call him if she was ever in town. When that connection doesn't materialize, Heidi is forced to fend for herself with little money. Her first night in town, she goes to a bar, drinks, meets a boy, and goes home with him. She doesn't even notice Joe (Sam Worthington) watching her. The next morning, Heidi is dismayed to find that the guy she slept with has a girlfriend, and is on his way back to Sydney. Desperate and broke, she goes looking for work. Despite her good looks and charm, she's a bit too aggressive in trying to win friends and influence people. That night, she hooks up with Joe, and senses a connection between them. Instead of taking her home, he takes her to a motel. He seems reluctant to get involved with her, but she is persistent. The next morning, he hurriedly leaves for work. Joe works for his father, a wealthy farmer. Heidi meets the motel owner, Irene (Lynette Curran), who kindly offers to let her stay a couple of days, until she finds a job. Heidi ends up working at the local gas station with Bianca (Hollie Andrew). She begins to settle in, but her relationship with Joe deteriorates, her emotional instability takes hold. Somersault marks the feature debut of writer/director Cate Shortland. The film won 13 of the Australian Film Institute's annual awards in 2004, and was selected by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Museum of Modern Art for inclusion in the 2005 edition of New Directors/New Films.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
On its surface, Cate Shortland's quietly mesmerizing feature debut, Somersault, wouldn't seem to bring much originality to the troubled-teenage-girl-coming-of-age subgenre. It has all the requisite plot points and stock characters -- the sullen, handsome romantic interest, just smart enough to be a misfit; his obnoxious buddy; the kindly older woman whose own sad past brings out her compassion toward the wayward lass; the outsider (here gay) who returns to the Podunk setting with a wiser perspective. Then there's the girl herself, impossibly gorgeous and seemingly unable to control her budding sexuality, which is just a pragmatic front for her essential guilelessness. A plot synopsis and character breakdown reveal little of the movie's considerable visual beauty and its raw emotional honesty. The film falters more than once in its plotting, resolving a couple of scenes a bit too neatly, and having characters speak aloud what real people probably would not, but it contains several startling, brilliant moments that bring its emotional and visual content together with tremendous clarity and power. The film's best moments are subtle, tactile, and gestural. Shortland and cinematographer Robert Humphreys use the frigid setting of Lake Jindabyne brilliantly, exemplified by a shot of Joe (Sam Worthington) using a bucket of hot water to melt the ice on his windshield, or in Heidi's (Abbie Cornish) viscerally pained, wordless reaction to a friend's betrayal. These seemingly simple choices amply demonstrate Shortland's prodigious talent for telling her story visually, and together with strong performances from her cast, particularly Cornish, enable the film to transcend its occasional lapses into clichés. Appropriately enough, Somersault sets up a certain expectation, only to turn it on its head.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/25/2006
UPC:
0876964000291
Original Release:
2004
Rating:
NR
Source:
Magnolia
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Time:
1:42:00
Sales rank:
39,432

Special Features

Closed Caption; Inside the Snowdome: making Somersault; Deleted scenes with audio commentary from Cate Shortland; Shooting Somersault: on location interview with Robert Humphreys ACS, director of photography

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Abbie Cornish Heidi
Sam Worthington Joe
Lynette Curran Irene
Erik Thomson Richard
Hollie Andrew Bianca
Leah Purcell Diane
Olivia Pigeot Nicole
Blake Pittman Karl

Technical Credits
Cate Shortland Director,Screenwriter
Anthony Anderson Producer
Anthony Anderson Producer
Nikki Barrett Casting
Jan Chapman Executive Producer
Decoder Ring Score Composer
Melinda Doring Production Designer
Scott Gray Editor
Robert Humphereys Cinematographer
John Martin Asst. Director
Janie Parker Art Director
Sam Petty Sound/Sound Designer
Emily Seresin Costumes/Costume Designer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 --
1. Opening Credits [4:59]
2. Did That Hurt? [3:27]
3. Going Away [8:07]
4. Place For Tourists [5:04]
5. Motel [9:39]
6. Job Opening [4:18]
7. A Place For Rent [7:03]
8. After Work [9:59]
9. Holding Hands [9:36]
10. House Party [15:21]
11. Bad Vibes [3:31]
12. Her Place [7:59]
13. Must Leave [5:52]
14. Saying Goodbye [:37]
15. Trip Home [1:32]
16. End Credits [:52]

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