Aussie film all sewn up
THE hotly anticipated first trailer for the Australian period drama The Dressmaker, starring Kate Winslet and Liam Hemsworth, has just lobbed – and it doesn’t disappoint.
While the screen chemistry between the attractive leading couple burns hotter than the radiator of a sunbaked Holden on a midsummer’s afternoon, they are very nearly upstaged by veteran actress Judy Davis, who as Winslet’s mother gets some of the best lines.
“A murderer and a lesbian,’’ she calls her daughter tartly.
Winslet plays a high- flying international dress designer who returns to her outback Australian home after leaving in a cloud of gossip. Winslet shows off a flawless Aussie accent in the trailer.
Rising Australian star Sarah Snook is not overshadowed in a jaw- dropping, ugly duckling transformation.
Director Jocelyn Moorhouse describes her latest film, a tale of love, revenge and haute couture set in the 1950s, as Unforgiven with a sewing machine.
Rather than a six- shooter, the lead character ( Winslet) wields her vintage Singer to similarly devastating effect.
“She does it quite deliberately to enable her to get the information she needs to piece together the puzzles of the past,’’ said producer Sue Maslin.
While the heat and dust posed significant challenges for the costume department while the production was on location around Castlemaine and Horsham in country Victoria, it was the actors who felt it most.
“All the actresses were wearing period corsetry. So the level of detail … well, what you see visibly is matched by what they are wearing underneath and that certainly had its challenges in the heat,’’ said Maslin.
Having already filmed Holy Smoke ( 1999) with Jane Campion in remote South Australia, Oscar- winning actress Winslet knew what she had signed up for.
“Absolutely,’’ said Maslin. “And once again she nailed the accent beautifully.”
Winslet brought her entire family with her on location.
The Dressmaker opens in Australia on October 1.
SIZZLING CHEMISTRY: Liam Hemsworth and Kate Winslet in a scene from Australian film The Dressmaker.