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November 19, 2008

Should we believe reviews of Baz Luhrmann's Australia?

Reviews started leaking out yesterday of Baz Luhrmann’s long-awaited new film, Australia.

And the first ones were all very positive.

The Sun, The Times and the Herald Sun in Australia all broke the apparent embargo which said reviews shouldn’t be published until after last night’s premiere in Sydney.

So what links the publications who published early, and who all found the film to be “perfect”, “beautiful” and a “love letter to Australia”?

They’re all owned by Australian Rupert Murdoch.

Who, coincidentally, also owns the film’s production company and distributor.

Naturally, being the first available reviews, websites that publish reviews of reviews all used the Rupert Murdoch-owned ones.

Funnily enough, the reviewers who waited for the embargo to be lifted found the film to be ‘not the masterpiece that we were hoping for’, ‘not a bad film… But far from a great one’ and a word that crops up in most of them is “cliched”.

The bias is so obvious, even Homer Simpson would notice it.

EDIT: Even members of the Murdoch stable seem to realise the film might not be the masterpiece they first thought.

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