This film about an Australian Rules football club in the Victorian Football League (VFL) could easily be about the behind-the-scenes and front-of-house activities of any company, organisation, charity or committee.
It shows the way people operate – lying, manipulating, adapting, pushing a line . . .
Laurie, the coach (Jack Thompson), has never won a Grand Final; the president, meat pie manufacturer Ted Parker (Graham Kennedy), is financially embarrassed and trying to pull a success out of the hat; the ex-president, Jock (Frank Wilson), is consumed with vanity; the manager plays both sides against the middle, the captain, Danny (Harold Hopkins) is getting too old for the game and is now on his last season, and while the players are on Laurie’s side, their mood is made worse by the fact that Parker has just paid $120,000 for a new player they all despise.
The film is full of good ensemble playing but lacks a hero – there’s no single character to excite the audience.