Set in 1940s Australia, The New Boy is the story of a nine-year-old Aboriginal orphan boy who arrives in the dead of night at a remote monastery, run by a renegade nun, where his presence disturbs the delicately balanced world in this story of spiritual struggle and the cost of survival.
In an exhilarating start to the film, the brave boy is engaged in a battle with police, fighting with all his might. Eventually subdued, he is sent off to a remote monastery – and home to orphaned boys – run by Sister Eileen.
The kindly nun has a calming effect on the new boy, and he also forms connections with Sister Mum and George who manages the farmlands. An attempt at bullying the new boy falls flat, and he soon becomes an established, unique presence at the monastery.
But he possesses unusual powers, and as Sister Eileen’s religious zeal intensifies, things begin to unravel.
Thornton’s elegant and concise storytelling is augmented with spectacular images and a uniformly superb cast – including a group of very promising actors playing the boys at the monastery. But it is the magnetic on-screen presence of young Aswan Reid that astonishes. A film of great symbolism and impact, The New Boy finds Thornton at the height of his cinematic powers: it is intoxicating and magical.
- Aswan Reid - Aboriginal orphan boy
Cate Blanchett - Sister Eileen
Deborah Mailman - Sister Mum
Wayne Blair - farmland manager George
Shane Brady - Michael
Tyrique Brady - Matthew
Laiken Woolmington - David
Kailem Miller - Steven
Kyle Miller - James
Tyzailin Roderick - Henry
Tyler Spencer - Johnny
Kenneth Radley - Policeman
- Release dates
- 10 June 2023 - Australian premiere at the Sydney Film Festival
6 July 2023 - Theatrical release
- M - Mature
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Other films by Warwick Thornton
- 1996Pay Back
- 2003Rosalie's Journey
- 2005The Old Man and the Inland Sea
- 2005Green Bush
- 2007Tnorala – Baby Falling
- 2008Dark Science
- 2009Samson & Delilah
- 2010Art + Soul
- 2013The Turning: Big World
- 2013The Darkside
- 2017We Don't Need A Map
- 2017Sweet Country
- 2019The Beach
- 2020Mystery Road (TV series, Season 2)
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