…the story focused on the type of savage, misogynistic, lawlessness we’ve seen in other Antipodean work such as Warrior, Underbelly, Jack Irish and, um, Lawless.
At times, Campion contrasted the tranquillity and blue beauty of the lake with the barren outback and the violent amorality of the people living there.
But even the lake had a sense not just of mystery but menace… Review, UK Daily Mail 13/7/13
Top of the Lake, the acclaimed New Zealand writer and director Jane Campion’s mini series, has concluded on Sundance channel.
This series is excellent, and should be used as a reference if people ask you what it is really like to live in New Zealand, or when you are asked why you left such a glorious place.
If you’re one of the people taken in by the New Zealand advertising hype and seriously contemplating a relocation to the most remote country on earth, this series is such a gritty, brutally honest depiction of the New Zealand lifestyle for so many people that you need to watch it.
You could, of course, also watch Once Were Warriors, to get an understanding of the under-current of violence and grinding poverty in the country. (Warning, video may offend – not suitable for children)
But Top of the Lake gives a far better appreciation of the real day to day issues, including those of the status of women in this small nation, children perpetuating the cycle of violence and abuse, incest, child rape and youth suicide.
But New Zealand is a great place to bring up kids! … are you sure of that?
There are some quotes from the final reviews:
Salon.com: “]As GJ (Holly Hunter) says, “we’re up in a place called Paradise, but is everything okay? Of course not.”
Hitflix.com: “Throughout, Campion and collaborators Garth Davis and Gerald Lee did an excellent job of making that community a place where I could gawk at the scenery and yet never, ever want to visit.”
Slate.com “I did like how it kind of made sense of the actual biggest mystery of Top of the Lake, which is, as a friend of mine put it, why does nobody in this town care about rape?…talk about a rape culture“