Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Tomorrow: When The War Began - Renegade Teens As War Heroes

Novelist John Marsden sold millions of copies for his book - "Tomorrow: When The War Began", a series that has a rabid teen following in Australia and New Zealand. In fact, when news of its impending film adaptation came, the teenage online community was abuzz with excitement, each one giving their 2 cents about who should play Ellie, Homer or Kevin.

I was just glad to have finally caught on with this Australian phenomenon.


A group of teens heads down to the wilderness for a camping adventure. There's headstrong Ellie (Caitlin Stasey) and her bestfriend Corrie (Rachel Hurd-Wood) whose relationship with boyfriend Kevin (Lincoln Lewis) is on simmer. A few other guys in their company include hunky Homer (Deniz Akdeniz), While in the wilderness that night, they noticed a parade of war planes flying over them. War games, maybe? The morning after, they found their homes abandoned; their parents gone, dogs splay dead on the road; everything in disarray.

Later that night, they learned the shocking truth: Australia has been invaded by a neighboring nation (I'd say they're either the North Koreans or the Chinese) who wanted Australia's affluence to spill over. They saw their parents in prison camps. What are they supposed to do when it seems help is nowhere in sight?

The film is a fantastical adventure about teens who decide to fight back to reclaim what is rightfully theirs: freedom, property and their family. And their first step was to blow up a bridge heavily used by the invading forces to transport supplies. Can they summon enough guts to pull the plan off?

Isn't that a testosterone-charged imagination?

Youthful charm and exuberance fuel its fantastic storyline, you somehow need to suspend disbelief to thoroughly enjoy its premise! They've hired soap veterans for their cast (Caitlin Stasey is from "Neighbours"; Deniz Akdeniz is from "As The Bell Rings"; and resident bad boy Lincoln Lewis is from "Home and Away"). Message boards mostly agree with the casting of Deniz as Homer, and Caitlin as Ellie, although some find Caitlin too chic to play Ellie (who should have a farm girl persona). I am not familiar with Stasey's other characters so I found her perfect as the main protagonist.

The movie is told like they were still on the incipient stages of adventure, thus we may expect a couple of sequels, as this is somehow "designed" as a trilogy. I wouldn't complain on that. I had fun watching them shoot the bad guys and blow up stuff. And it didn't hurt that the guys were such eye-candies. Deniz's Homer smolders! And Chris Pang (who plays Ellie's love interest Lee) has an endearing personality.

Caitlin Stasey constantly reminds me of Harry Potter's Emma Watson! As Ellie Linton, she "rocks"!

Cute guys in a row. The guys from Stuart Beattie's "Tomorrow: When The War Began".

Deniz Akdeniz, Lincoln Lewis and the gorgeous Chris Pang saying "cheese"!

Lincoln Lewis and Deniz Akdeniz share the Bronte Beach sun.

Deniz Akdeniz is born in Australia to Turkish Cypriot parents thus the unique name - and such exotic looks. In the film, he plays Homer who's infatuated with Fiona (Phoebe Tonkin).

Lincoln Lewis has a huge Australian teenage following due to his usually bare-chested role in the soap "Home and Away". He was involved in a sex scandal involving him and a starlet, the video taken from his cell phone, which he later boasted and showed to his TV cast-mates. This eventually ended his 3 year character as Geoff in "Home and Away" where he won a Logie as "the most popular male star". Scandal made him even more so. Right, Hayden?

Lincoln Lewis

Lincoln Lewis plays Kevin Holmes who's more interested in securing his safety than looking after his girlfriend Corrie. Later in the film, Kevin redeems himself.

Chris Pang plays Lee, Ellie's love interest.

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