Written by Nobuhiro Hosoki
Four close-knit orphans in a Catholic convent in the outback of Australia are sent one summer vacation to a coastal community to live with a generous family for a few months. It is the 1960s, and the hosts are an eccentric old couple: Bandy (Jack Thompson), a husband and retired naval officer, and his wife, Skipper (Kris Mcquade). Among the December-born orphans commanded by the elderly Maps (Daniel Radcliff) are Misty (Lee Cormie), Spark (Christian Byers) and Spit (James Frazer).
It's their first look of the wider world, and at the same time they must face the competition for prospective adoptive parents by the childless couple living next door, the beautiful Teresa (Victoria Hill) and her motorcycling husband, Fearless (Sullivan Stapleton).
While the other orphans--exhilirated by their freedom--run around the hills to talk and flirt with local girls, Misty(Lee Cormie, the youngest of the four engages in an elaborate attempt to become a perfect son, and starts to make himself attractive. On the other hand, a taciturn virgin Maps is infatuated with the sexy blonde Lucy (Teresa Palmer), who possesses the ideal of a male adolescent.
Daniel Radcliff in his first film attempt outside the "Harry Potter" world, skillfully manages a convincing Australian accent, surviving through the test of the friendship with his younger companion.
Based on the Micheal Noonan novel of the same name, Director Ron Hardy introduces elements not always imbued with a cohesive narrative, but throughout the film, he keeps us reminiscing about how we cherish our childhood memories in our hearts. In the end, "There's no substitute for a family"--that is what counts.
Directed by Rod Hardy
Written by Marc Rosenberg
Based on the novel by Michael Noonan
Director of photography: David Connell
Edited by Dany Cooper
Music by Carlo Giacco
Production designer: Leslie Binns
produced by Richard Becker
Released by Warner Independent Pictures.
Running time: 105 minutes.
Cast: Daniel Radcliffe (Maps)
Lee Cormie (Misty)
Christian Byers (Sparks)
James Fraser (Spit)
Victoria Hill (Teresa)
Sullivan Stapleton (Fearless)
Teresa Palmer (Lucy),
and Jack Thompson (Bandy).