Wolf Creek, rurality and the Australian gothic

Scott, John & Biron, Dean (2010) Wolf Creek, rurality and the Australian gothic. Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies, 24(2), pp. 307-322.

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Abstract

As with Crocodile Dundee before it, the recent Australian film Wolf Creek promotes a specific and arguably urban-centric understanding of rural Australia. However, whilst the former film is couched in mythologized notions of the rural idyll, Wolf Creek is based firmly around the concept of rural horror. Wolf Creek is both a horror movie and a road movie, one which relies heavily upon landscape in order to tell its story. Here we argue that the film continues a tradition in the New Australian Cinema of depicting the outback and its inhabitants as something the country's mostly coastal population do not understand. Wolf Creek skilfully plays on popular conceptions of inland Australia as empty and harsh. But more than this, the film brings to the fore tensions in the rural idyll associated with the ownership and use of rural space. As an object of urban consumption, rural space may appear passive and familiar, but in the context of rural horror iconic aspects of the Australian landscape become a source of fear – a space of abjection.

Impact and interest:

5 citations in Scopus
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4 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 79032
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1080/10304310903576358
ISSN: 1030-4312
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Schools > School of Law
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Routledge
Deposited On: 10 Dec 2014 23:58
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2015 22:39

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