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Strange Bedfellows

Director: Dean Murphy

2004. Colour. Anamorphic. Dolby digital stereo. 99 min.


Starring Paul Hogan at his most relaxed this side of Crocodile Dundee, director Dean Murphy’s fitfully amusing farce is about two small-town chums who pretend to be gay for financial gain. Cinema owner Vince (Hogan) has a huge tax demand following his divorce and plans to take advantage of recent changes in the tax system which favour same-sex couples. He persuades his mate Ralph (Michael Caton) to pretend they are an item. Schooled in ‘gayness’ by Eric the local hairdresser, the ‘strange bedfellows’ undertake an enlightening research trip to Sydney, taking in the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. Hogan and Caton are terrific, and there’s strong support from Pete Postlethwaite as the wary tax inspector the men try to dupe. Director Murphy impresses with an unfussy visual approach and extracts all the laughs and pathos the script has to offer. The real town of Yackandandah in northern Victoria looks picture-postcard pretty in Dale Cornelius’ elegant widescreen cinematography.

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