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Black Chicks Talking (2001)

  Directed by: Leah Purcell
Starring: Rosanna Argus, Kathryn Hay, Deborah Mailman, Cilla Malone, Leah Purcell, Tammy Williams
Links: Black Chicks Talking on the IMDb
Genre: Documentary

This movie gets: 8.00 (1 rating)
nofreelist.com Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

"Interesting dinner party banter" - a review by pearly

Based on the book of the same name, Black Chicks Talking is just that. Leah Purcell has gathered together five Aboriginal women from different parts of Australia, to sit at a dinner table and talk about issues facing them. Among them are an actress, a Miss Australia, an attorney, a warden, and a mother of six.

I attended a screening of this film at the 2002 Melbourne International Film Festival that was introduced by director Leah Purcell. She spoke about her time organising this project, and the things that it taught her. Afterwards, she and a few other black chicks had a Q+A session, which expanded on the ideas brought up in the film.

One of the most interesting things that Leah discussed was the decision-making process that she went through when choosing the five black chicks for the film. She spoke about purposely choosing girls that were very different from each other (both in background and colour), to show that there is much diversity within the Aboriginal community. On the one hand, there is Tammy Williams, a relatively fair-skinned woman who didn't know of her Aboriginal roots until she was seven years old. She spoke about feeling as though she didn't belong at the table with the others, because she wasn't even sure she accepted that she was Aboriginal herself. She was, however, able to form a bond with Rosanna Argus, the one most entrenched in the traditional Aboriginal culture and the darkest of the bunch.

I found it extremely engrossing to listen to what the women had to say, and to watch their growth. A vehicle for getting an important message out there, it's something that all Australians should be interested to see.

pearly gives this movie 8 out of 10.
Review created on Thu 8 Aug 2002

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Reader comments

  1. Hi Leah
    I'm an Ozzie living in London and have just read your book - it's excellent!!! My Caribbean and African colleagues are keen to buy copies of their own. We'd like to know when you plan to come to London, and how we can see the movie? Also, any plans to bring "Box the Pony" to London any time soon?

    Cheers,
    x L

    A comment from leza on Fri 05 Sep 2003 01:49 #

  2. your book rules leah, love your idea and my english class is studying it now. i love deb mailman and researched her deeply due to her fascinating life. please bring out another series of black chicks.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from mike williams on Mon 13 Oct 2003 19:44 #

  3. I am studying Black Chicks Talking, and just wondering, why you chose these girls? and what views are u tryin' to let teh audience see?

    Rating given: 8

    A comment from Amalie on Tue 13 Apr 2004 22:10 #

  4. We have started studying Black Chicks Talking in my Yr 12 Literature class. I absolutely loved it!! I was wondering why you specifically chose those 5 women, why you included the "victory dance", and why you didn't ask the same sort of questions to Kathryn Hay as to the other 4 ladies? The question, what part aboriginal are you today, along with her response, was very thought prevoking.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from Penelope on Tue 20 Apr 2004 20:39 #

  5. Wow, what an inspiring movie!! Kathryn Hay really intrigued me and inspired me to be true to myself. It was very thought-provoking. I had to watch it as part of an Identity assignment for Year 12 Aboriginal Studies and it raised some really interesting points.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from Alli on Mon 31 Oct 2005 12:30 #

  6. Black Chicks talking was good.. Didn't like Cilla's nails.

    Rating given: 3

    A comment from Stephan on Thu 09 Mar 2006 11:37 #

  7. deb mailman is such an inspiration. i wish i lover her ever so deeply. you go girlfrond

    A comment from Stephan on Thu 09 Mar 2006 11:40 #

  8. soooo boring movie mayte. deb mailman was hoit. oooooh yeah

    Rating given: 1

    A comment from Jimmy on Thu 09 Mar 2006 11:44 #

  9. deb email me ;). ooooooh yeah.

    A comment from Jimmy on Thu 09 Mar 2006 11:45 #

Those who have commented give this movie: 7.00 (6 ratings)

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