WRITTEN BY: Fin Edquist
DIRECTED BY: Deane Taylor
CO-DIRECTED BY: Noel Cleary, Alexs Staderman, Alex Wright
STARRING: Ryan Kwanten, Robin McLeavy, Rufus Sewell, David Wenham, Toni Collette
RATING: 3 stars
Blinky Bill (Ryan Kwanten) dreams of leaving Green Patch and becoming an explorer like his father, but when Mr Bill (Richard Roxburgh) goes missing in the Outback, Blinky decides to go looking for him. Along the way, he becomes friends with zoo koala Nutsy (Robin McLeavy) and nervous frill-necked lizard Jacko (David Wenham). Blinky is also pursued by the relentlessly feral Cat (Rufus Sewell).
There is a lot of nostalgia for adults who grew up watching the Blinky Bill cartoon and reading the books. Meanwhile, children discovering the character for the first time will have even more fun. Blinky Bill is full of stereotypical Australian slang and has some very funny lines throughout. The cast is also impressive, led by Kwanten who is surprisingly good at the childish voice, while Sewell is wonderfully sly, McLeavy is a tough female and Wenham is delightfully silly. The film also features Toni Collette as the hilarious sidekick emus Beryl and Cheryl, Deborah Mailman as Blinky's wise mother and Barry Humphries as the eccentric wombat. The CGI might put some traditional viewers off, but the film does actually look great. Importantly, it also has a sweet story and plenty of adventure for children to enjoy.