It’s Friday, and in our quest to bring you movies that touch the heart and tickle the funny bone, we are taking you back to 1997 with a true Australian treasure: ‘The Castle’. Directed by Rob Sitch in 1997, this film is a perfect mix of humour, warmth, and the unbreakable spirit of an Aussie family. Why is ‘The Castle’ a must-watch for our Friday Night Movies series? It’s the vibe.
Not only does The Castle boast a number of memorable quotes, but it’s not just the one lines that make the movie — the story itself has made The Castle one of the greatest Australian movies of all time. The film follows the Kerrigan family, led by the forever optimistic Darryl Kerrigan, who lives next to Melbourne’s airport. Their simple and content life faces a significant challenge when they’re told they must vacate their beloved home for airport expansion. What follows is a David-and-Goliath battle as the Kerrigans stand up to the authorities. It’s a tale sprinkled with humour, love, and quintessential Aussie quirks, all centred around the concept that a man’s home is his castle.
‘The Castle’ shines with its perfectly Aussie cast. Michael Caton delivers a memorable performance as Darryl, embodying the spirit of an optimistic, and caring father. Anne Tenney, as his wife Sal, provides the heart and soul of the family. And then there are the Kerrigan children, played by Stephen Curry, Sophie Lee, Anthony Simcoe and Wayne Hope each adding their unique quirks and traits to this family portrait. Not to forget the iconic lawyer Dennis Denuto, played by Tiriel Mora, whose courtroom scenes are now the stuff of legend.
It seems “The Castle” is not just one of my favourite Aussie films of all time with an Audience Score of 92% on Rotten Tomatoes from over 10,000 ratings. IMDb‘s rating while not as high scoring as Rotten Tomatoes mirrors this affection with 7.6/10 with the film’s success in its ability to blend the Aussie sense of humour with a touching narrative effortlessly.
Here’s a little trivia about ‘The Castle’ – much of the film’s dialogue was improvised, adding to its natural and relatable feel. Also, the house used as the Kerrigans’ home was actually located near Melbourne’s airport, lending authenticity to the setting.
Join the Kerrigans this evening.