Film Review: Gurrumul

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Indigenous Australians have for the longest time struggled to find a voice in Australia. Through persecution and exclusion, they have persevered to maintain a rich culture and history. Gurrumul opened the eyes of the rest of world to this beautiful part of Australia with his music and sound. He became, what many consider, the most important voice in Australian music and left a legacy that the whole nation admires. This film follows the life of a shy and introverted musician who became one of the most influential Indigenous Australians in history.

Gurrumul is a documentary that follows the aboriginal musician Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu. Using a collection of footage filmed throughout his entire career, director Paul Damian Williams has created an expressive picture of an exceptional life lived. Starting with his beginnings in Yothu Yindi and Saltwater Band to his later successes as a solo artist. The story of Gurrumul is a pure one. With someone as quiet and private as Gurrumul you know that you are seeing genuine human being when you witness his awkward interviews with media where he can barely utter a word to the moments when he opens up to his closest friends and family.

The story of Gurrumul is told mostly by those around him. The most important being his manager Michael Hohnen and his auntie Susan Dhangal Gurruwiwi. Michael acts as his friend and producer, guiding Gurrumul through his entire journey and being there for him for all the tough moments on the road. Hohnen acts as Gurrumul’s voice in a lot of his public appearances, helping the very humble Gurrumul. Susan narrates the film and paints a picture of the spirit of Gurrumul and the deep meaning in his music and culture.

Gurrumul is an incredibly expressive film that highlights the disconnect in aboriginal and western culture and the magnificence that was Gurrumul’s music and how it brought these two worlds closer together. Gurrumul will be screening at Palace Nova Eastend from the 25th of April. Come and see the unfolding of a life as beautiful as Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu.

Check out the official site here.

8.0 Expressive

Gurrumul is an incredibly expressive film that highlights the disconnect in aboriginal and western culture and the magnificence that was Gurrumul’s music.

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