The Dam

Director of Photography: Josh Flavell

The Dam tells the story of two Johns. One John was chief engineer, while other John poured the concrete, but both have remained lifelong friends since the building of the dam. When one falls ill, the other returns home from Capetown to Sydney.

Director Brendon McDonall (All God’s Creatures) and Cinematographer Josh Flavell (BedHead) present a strong short film with stunning cinematography of the Australian countryside. A visit to the monolith that defined their young lives opens a reservoir of loss and regret between two mature Australian men with hearts under siege; by feelings that were impounded long ago but can’t be contained any longer.

Flavell has an eye for arresting images, and his cinematography perfectly realises the director’s vision. Underwater photography adds to the plot and is beautifully rendered. The Sydney-based cinematographer and a graduate of AFTRS seems to be in love with the landscapes without detracting from the human drama.

Reviewed at the 2016 Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF).

By James Cunningham

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