A story of one man not only battling the bottle, but the city that won’t let him put it down, Ruben Guthrie features the directorial debut of award-winning playwright, screenwriter and actor Brendan Cowell, adapted from his critically acclaimed 2008 Belvoir St Theatre production.
Ruben Guthrie (Patrick Brammall) leads a party boy lifestyle, has a model fiancée and lives in a house on the water. He’s at the top of his game, until some drunken skylarking lands Ruben at the bottom of his infinity pool, lucky to be alive. His fiancée Zoya (Abbey Lee) leaves him, but not before issuing him one final challenge: if he can abstain from alcohol for an entire year, she’ll give him one last chance.
Suitably jolted, Ruben quits the bottle, and sets about rebuilding his life. But it won’t be simple. His parents (Robyn Nevin and Jack Thompson in fine form), colleagues and friends are dismissive of his efforts, and the city itself seems to constantly urge him to rejoin the party.
Shot on location all over Sydney, the film is produced by Kath Shelper (Samson and Delilah) and stars some of this country’s best actors: Patrick Brammall, Alex Dimitriades, Abbey Lee, Harriet Dyer, Jeremy Sims, Brenton Thwaites, Aaron Bertram, Robyn Nevin and Jack Thompson.
As Ruben Guthrie, Patrick Brammall is best known for his roles in Offspring and Upper Middle Bogan, and was most recently seen in the feature film The Little Death, which premiered at the 2014 Sydney Film Festival and screened at the Toronto International Film Festival. His performance in the film saw him nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Award at the 2015 AACTA Awards.
Directed with heart and performed perfectly by a great cast, the darkly funny and intensely human Ruben Guthrie is a bittersweet love letter to a beautiful, glamorous city with a dark side.
“Ruben Guthrie is the great untold Australian binge-drinking comedy,” says Cowell. “I hope this movie will start a national conversation that will change the way we look at booze forever. I hope it will make people laugh, make people cry, and at the same time save lives and families. For as funny as this movie is, the issue it laughs at is as serious as any other down under.”
Ruben Guthrie is screening nationally at selected cinemas. For more information, visit: www.rubenguthrie.com.au for details.
Image: Patrick Brammall as Ruben Guthrie