Ned Kelly – The True Story

Director: Barrie Dowdall

Ireland| 2003. Colour. 52 mins.

Ned Kelly, the son of Irish emigrants and the Robin Hood of Australia, has become an icon since his death on the gallows at the age of 24. There is little agreement on whether he was a martyred hero, a failed revolutionary or merely a criminal. In 1906 he was the subject of what is alleged to be the first feature film, The Kelly Gang, and since then he has featured in every known medium from the printed word to big-budget feature films. Barrie Dowdall’s fascinating documentary looks at Kelly from an Irish perspective, using a mixture of archive film, dramatised re-enactments, input from experts and family members as well as clips from the latest Ned Kelly film featuring Heath Ledger.

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