Goldstone: A Western for the Current Age

By Rachel Flanagan

Aaron Pedersen
There are not many people who can tolerate the unforgiving climate of the Australian Outback, but it is this exact location that provides the perfect setting for a small mining outpost with an unsettling and yet extremely topical plotline of human sex trafficking. Director Ivan Sen brings back Aboriginal detective Jay Sawn (Aaron Pedersen) in "Goldstone," the riveting sequel to his 2013 "Mystery Road." When the Detective first arrives in the frontier town of Goldstone, he is simply there to investigate a missing persons report but what he ends up finding is a deteriorating town filled with a wealth of mineral deposits and corruption. "Goldstone" is the Western film for a new generation.

Set amongst a color palette of sand, driftwood and corrugated iron shacks with a yellow landscape, the film is a visually stunning masterpiece. The plot is familiar with a young, lesser-experienced cop forced to team up with a more troubled rough and tumble cop, opposites in many ways. Josh (Alex Russell) is a young white cop who starts out getting on the wrong side of Jay when pulling him over for drunk driving. In a town where racial segregation is maintained through land councils and immigration restriction, Josh, the local white cop, can't even believe that the aboriginal drunk he just pulled over is a police detective who bothered making his way to their despondent town to investigate a missing Chinese sex worker. To add to the tension of the two cops who must put their differences, troubles and moral dilemmas aside as they weave themselves deeper into the corruption amidst this diminishing town, the Mayor (the iconic Jacki Weaver) just wants to get her hands on the mineral deposits in whatever way she can and having the detective in town is not ideal.

"Goldstone" builds tension slow as Sen puts the pieces of his cinematic plot together, allowing them to simmer in a slow burning pot before the steam rises high enough that things don't boil over, they explode into action as anyone looking for a good Western would expect. But staying true to Swan, it is important to restore the faith in the justice system and not just shoot each other to death in a gun fight with the fastest draw winning - good or bad. With an all-star cast between Pederson, Russell and Weaver, the depth of characters makes for a dramatic story that viewers will fall into and feel connected. Staying true to the Old West feel but intermixing an all too real and relevant storyline, "Goldstone" is a modern take on the timeless Western movie genre, paying great respects as an Australian film fit for a wide audience to enjoy.

"Goldstone" is playing in select theaters now.

Posted By Discover Hollywood on March 16, 2018 11:15 am | Permalink