The film starts ominously with an image of the Hanging Rock, a volcanic formation which towers above the pastoral landscape in the vicinity of Melbourne, in the state of Victoria. Victoria is at that time still a British colony, just before it becomes part of the Commonwealth of Australia, a federation of all colonies on mainland Australia and Tasmania which is inaugurated on 1 January By leaving the college, the girls are venturing into the Australian wilderness where their Britishness will be confronted with the unknown and the primeval, both in nature and in themselves. They live in the best of all possible worlds, in the age of steam and steel, in a colony which is part of the mighty British empire. What can possibly go wrong? Australians were aware that they lived at the frontiers of civilisation.
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I t is 43 years since Peter Weir bolstered the emerging Australian new wave with the extraordinary Picnic at Hanging Rock. Its dreamlike mixture of horror, mystery and barely suppressed sapphic love stayed with audiences long after they left theatres. Three of the girls and one of their teachers go missing in unusual circumstances, kicking off an enticing mystery that is never satisfactorily solved. It feels like the remake has popped up out of nowhere, but nothing about the story feels dated. It may take place 8, miles south-west, but it chimes well with modern Nordic noir. We have a familiar combination of missing children The Killing , dark secrets Modus and the fatal power of the elemental Jordskott. You can also see echoes of its metaphysical ponderings in Westworld and Battlestar Galactica.
Note: I ran across the this material while searching the web. Unfortuantely, there was no identification of author. Material that is mine has been added in . The girls are going on a picnic at Hanging Rock, a natural monument formed of ancient lava rock.
Set in , it is about a group of female students at an Australian girls' boarding school who vanish at Hanging Rock while on a Valentine's Day picnic, and the effects the disappearances have on the school and local community. The novel was first published in in Australia by Cheshire Publishing and was reprinted by Penguin in It is widely considered by critics to be one of the best Australian novels. Although the events depicted in the novel are entirely fictional, it is framed as though it were a true story , corroborated by ambiguous pseudohistorical references.