Australian Traveller magazine has sought out our country’s most spectacular film backdrops ever to appear on film. Do you agree with our list of Australia’s most iconic film locations?
1. Mundi Mundi Plains, NSW: Mad Max 2 & Priscilla Queen of the Desert
This barren red expanse, north-west of Broken Hill, has been the iconic outback go-to shot not just for these but for other Aussie films such as Razorback as well. The photogenic township of Silverton, just a few kilometres from Mundi Mundi Plains, houses a Mad Max museum and the Silverton Hotel has some quirky movie memorabilia to make the drive worth while.
2. Arnhem Land: Ten Canoes
The visual highlight of Rolf de Heer and Peter Djigirr’s 2006 film is when the canoes seek out magpie eggs in the confines of the Arufura Swamp. Ten Canoes portrays the vivid cycle of life of the Top End; Arnhem Land and the Mary River Flood Plains are so energising and removed from the constructs of humans. Australian nature at its best.
3.Victorian High Country: Man From Snowy River
The moment Tom Burlinson (or his stunt double) rides down the side of the misty mountain in The Man From Snowy River an iconic moment in Australian cinema was born. The Victorian High Country, around Mansfield, Mount Buller and Mount Stirling, are brilliantly defined by the snow gums, the lush bush and the rolling mountains. The alpine landscape is also enhanced with one of the most reconisable film props in Aussie film history: Craig’s Hut. Banjo Patterson should get some credit too…
4. Flinders Ranges: Rabbit Proof Fence
The brutal reality of the story of the Stolen Generation means the scenery certainly takes a backseat, but Rabbit Proof Fence gives perspective to the wide Australian landscape like few other films. While the 2002 film is set in Western Australia, much of it was shot in South Australia in the Onkaparinga River and Belair River national parks and Nilpena station. Parachilna, on the edge of the Flinders Ranges, is a good place to be come acquainted with the amazing expanse.
5. Bare Island/Around Sydney: Mission Impossible 2
Okay, so not strictly an Australian film but some of the action sequences around the Sydney coastline certainly sell the Harbour City as a stunning location. The hyperactive editing, cutting around Sydney’s heads and motorbikes racing around Bare Island near La Perouse, make the city seem almost slicker than real life – and, of course, Tom saves not just Sydney, but the whole world.