WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s early years as a teenage hacker are explored in this thrilling drama from director Robert Connolly (Balibo). Starring Rachel Griffiths and Anthony LaPaglia.

BFI Southbank, NFT1Oct 11, 2012 9:00 PM

  • Director Robert Connolly
  • Producer Helen Bowden
  • Screenwriter Robert Connolly
  • With Rachel Griffiths, Anthony LaPaglia, Alex Williams
  • Australia 2012
  • 88 mins
  • Sales NBC Universal

No one in contemporary culture embodies the duality of hero and villain as radically as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Director Robert Connolly (Balibo), whose inquisitive filmmaking is consistently dedicated to social and political issues, draws the story for this thrilling drama about Assange’s early years as a teenage hacker from the book by Suelette Dreyfus. Set in Melbourne in 1989, 18-year-old Julian (newcomer Alex Williams) is living with his activist mother (Rachel Griffiths) and his half-brother when he meets, and falls for, a feisty young woman with whom he soon has a child. However family life proves a distraction from his real passion and his prize Commodore 64. He and his mates have formed an online collective known as the International Subversives and their increasingly bold forays hacking into financial and government institutions soon attracts the attention of police detective Ken Roberts (Anthony LaPaglia) and the technologically compromised Australian Federal Police. Underground’s appeal is not only rooted in its topicality, it pulsates with the energy and commitment of youth and is imbued with nostalgia for a time when technology and its impact on our lives was simpler (well at least for most people!). This particular historical moment reverberates not only because of whom Assange would become, but also because of the current ‘revival’ of political activism.

Clare Stewart

Read more: https://whatson.bfi.org.uk/lff/Online/default.asp?doWork%3A%3AWScontent%3A%3AloadArticle=Load&BOparam%3A%3AWScontent%3A%3AloadArticle%3A%3Aarticle_id=AD98BC02-B79B-4E3E-8080-C522E6327CA4&BOparam%3A%3AWScontent%3A%3AloadArticle%3A%3Acontext_id=96C0493E-7FF5-4D48-A11E-D287414BF64B

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