Directed by Peter Carstairs


Assessment Task



Background and Historical Context

Australian 1967 Referendum Creative Spirits 1967 Referendum

1967 Referendum Video- The Foundation 1963-1967

Socratic Circles Readings

Group 1
SBS Factbox - Stronger Futures
New Matilda - NT Intervention 6 Years On

Group 2
SBS Factbox - Stronger Futures

The full version of this article can be read here:
Melissa Lucashenko - Who Let the Dogs Out?

Optional additional reading:
The Conversation - NT Intervention extended
'Lifestyle choices' is Abbott's third and final strike on Indigenous affairs

Viewing the film

Film Techniques

To be completed for homework prior to viewing the film.

Viewing Notes

To be completed as you watch the film.

Post-Viewing Activities

Themes and Ideas

1. List the ways in which Ed and Paddy live parallel yet contrasting lives.
2. Explain the importance of boxing for Paddy.
3. Why do Paddy and Ed display such different levels of interest in what Ed learns at school?
4. How are the boxing scenes representative of the changing nature of Ed and Paddy’s relationship?
5. How is the relationship between the fathers echoed by that of the sons?
6. Why does Rick withhold the truth about the new laws allowing Aboriginal workers equal rights to a wage? How does Michael react when he finds out?
7. “What can I do? Just the way it is.” In what ways do Leena and Eve experience similar difficulties?
8. “Think I’m gunna stay here and end up working for you?” How is Paddy’s life different from his father’s? Why might be this be?
9. What role does Amelia play in the narrative? What do the scenes involving her tell us about rural Australian society in the 1960s?
10. He “was my friend. We were just kids then.” What comment is the film making about racism?
11. How is segregation in rural Western Australia in the sixties portrayed in this film? GIve three examples.
12. The film illustrates the profound lack of understanding between white and black Australia. Explain using three examples.
13. What roles do the women have in this film?

Construction of the Text

1. How does the director employ the symbolism of fences and boundaries?
2. What is the significance of the stars and references to space exploration?
2. How does the film’s sparse dialogue impact on the viewer?
3. Describe the music and the mood that it conveys.
4. Describe the differences between the two family’s homes. What do the shots of these buildings emphasise to the viewer?
5. What ideas is Carstairs conveying in the use of parallel scenes such as the boys learning to drive?
6. How does Carstairs create tension in the scene where the boys sneak over to Amelia’s house? What are the consequences?
7. How does the landscape change between August and September? How is this a metaphor for the change in the two boys?
9. Discuss the use of visual motifs such as the gloves, the tobacco, the sky/weather, the boxing ring – what ideas do these convey?
10. What other film techniques, imagery or symbolism did you notice?

Comparative Text Analysis

Mapping Ideas

Mind Map.png

Writing Tools

'September Snapshots'

Family Houses .png

E and P star gazing....png

P and E road field.png

P and E boxing ring.png
P and E boxing cont.pngEmpty boxing ring.png

A, P & E boxing ring.png

Boxing glove.png

P empty boxing ring - night time.png

E in bed.png

P in bed.png

E driving.pngP driving.png

E walking up the road cont.png

E at bus stop.png

P back of the ute.png

Further Reading and Resources


The Stoush for September
Interview with director Peter Carstairs


At The Movies
The Age
Sydney Morning Herald
Salty Popcorn
Boomtown Rap