With Nan and a Whole Lot of Trouble, director Dena Curtis and writer Sue McPherson (adapting her own novel) has crafted a hilarious yet poignant short film tackling cultural taboos and family tensions.
It follows two sisters of Aboriginal/Irish descent, who quarrel over the traditional family photo album of deceased loved ones.
Although a strange custom today, preserving memories of the dearly departed in this manner was once quite common. But it’s also a contentious issue for some Indigenous people. The film explores both sides of the matter with sensitivity and sympathy, and most importantly, humour.
Curtis draws commendable performances from debut actors Noeleen Shearer as the fiery Nan and Amba-Rose Atkinson as conciliatory granddaughter Fuzzy.
Pamela Young, who butts heads with the others as Aunty Min, is the only established actor, with credits including the ABC’s The Moodys and Redfern Now.
However, the real stand-out is Dougal, the adorable terrier who plays Trouble.
Anyone with a weakness for cute dogs will be unable to resist Trouble.
Curtis has many awards winning short film credits and experience in broadcast television at the ABC and NITV.
Nan And A Whole Lot Of Trouble is McPherson’s first screenplay after many successful years as a novelist, including recognition from the Deadly Awards and Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. – Lonnie Gilroy