Tuesday, 17 November 2009

To the Breaker's Yard

RIP Edward Woodward. Good man and a fine actor, sadly too much telly not enough films. Breaker Morant and the not-exactly shabby The Wicker Man are his highpoints.

I loved Breaker Morant. Part war film, part courtroom drama. Shades of Zulu and l'affaire Dreyfus. You never saw a more cheerful and stoic wronged man.

Look into the true story of HH "Breaker" Morant. A wonderful romantic type. Hard-as-nails Aussie drover and friend of one of Idle's favourite poets, AB "Banjo" Paterson, he of Clancy of the Overflow fame:

I had written him a letter which I had, for want of better
Knowledge, sent to where I met him down the Lachlan years ago;
He was shearing when I knew him, so I sent the letter to him,
Just on spec, addressed as follows, "Clancy, of The Overflow."

And an answer came directed in a writing unexpected
(And I think the same was written with a thumb-nail dipped in tar);
'Twas his shearing mate who wrote it, and verbatim I will quote it:
"Clancy's gone to Queensland droving, and we don't know where he are."


Thud said...

Although another film with an anti establishment bias, Breaker is a gripping tale and a fav of mine.

Bill Quango MP said...

Agree re Breaker.

"CI5: The New Professionals" .... Harry Malone (13 episodes, 1999)

Never even heard of it?

Callan was good for its day.

Tuscan Tony said...

Thank you. I'd not heard of Breaker Morant and will be making the investment.

Savonarola said...

Re Aussie Poets.

Nosing around a library in Grahamstown, I came across a poem by an Australian soldier fighting against the Boers in the Boer War.

He writes of shooting an enemy soldier. An account of shooting a man just like yourself rather than an enemy. Moving.

For the life of me I cannot find the photocopy I made.


Savonarola said...

Ignore earlier posting. Found it.

M Grover "I killed a Man at Graspan".

Struth. In searching for this I came across the story of Breaker Morant. Hells Bells did not realise he fought in Boer War and was executed by firing squad for carry out Kitchener's orders.

No blindfold. Gary Gilmore must have stolen the idea from him.