Oyster Farmer (Icon) (2004)

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Released 2-Dec-2009

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Drama Audio Commentary-Anna Reeves - Director
Audio Commentary-Anthony Buckley - Producer & David Field - Actor
Short Film-La Vie En Rose
Short Film-The Imploding Self
Deleted Scenes
Interviews-Cast & Crew
Interviews-Crew-On the set with Andrew Urban - Urban Cinefile
Trailer-Propaganda Trailers
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2004
Running Time 86:46
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (63:35) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Anna Reeves
Icon Entertainment
Starring Alex O'Loughlin
Jim Norton
Diana Glenn
David Field
Kerry Armstrong
Claudia Harrison
Alan Cinis
Jack Thompson
Brady Kitchingham
Gary Henderson
Bill Wisely
Brian Howarth
Ian Johnson
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI ? Music Stephen Warbeck

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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Plot Synopsis

    You may or may not be aware that the Dendy films back catalogue has moved distributor in Australia from Magna Pacific to Icon. As part of this move many films are being re-released on DVD by Icon. Some of these titles are being released on Blu-ray for the first time. Some of the standard definition releases are exactly the same as their Magna Pacific forebears and others have some changes. In this case, Oyster Farmer, the film was originally released by Magna Pacific in 2006 and reviewed by us here . This new edition is exactly the same as the previous release (right down to the placement of the layer change) and owners of that disc need read no further as there is certainly no reason to re-purchase.

    The previous review by Steve Crawford gives a good rundown of the film's plot which does not need to be repeated here. I will however make some observations regarding my impressions of this film. I was fairly disappointed by the film, which although by no means a waste of time, did leave me wondering what the point of it was. It seemed to me that this film was a series of intertwined vignettes in one community rather than having a clear story and well-constructed narrative. Some parts of the story were reasonably well told, others seemed fairly pointless such as Jack's relationship with Skippy which made little sense to me. Maybe I went into this film with my expectations set to high but I was certainly hoping for more from an AFI Best Film nominee. On the positive side, I enjoyed the cast's performances and the locations and houses certainly had an air of authenticity.

    All in all, this re-release is only occurring due to a change in distributor and does not offer anything more than the previous edition, which was of quite good quality.


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Transfer Quality


    The video quality is good but in the wrong aspect ratio.

    The feature is presented in an approximately 1.78:1 aspect ratio which is cropped from the original aspect ratio of 2.35:1. It is 16x9 enhanced widescreen.

    The picture was reasonably clear and sharp but somewhat indistinct in the backgrounds. Shadow detail was reasonable. There was some light grain at times.

    The colour was good but not overly vibrant which is in line with the film's colour scheme.

    There were some mild MPEG artefacts especially around motion.

    There are no subtitles.

    The layer change was not noticeable but occurs at 63:35.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    The audio is good.

    This DVD contains four audio tracks, English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s), English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s) and two separate tracks of English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s).

    Dialogue was generally clear and easy to understand.

    The music by Stephen Warbeck is quite Irish/bush band flavoured and did not really appeal to me.

    The surround speakers were used for regular atmosphere without really standing out and the subwoofer was used for music mostly.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use


     The extras are exactly the same as the previous version. Details can be found  here .

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    There has been no change that I can discover in global editions of this film since the previous review. Accordingly this new Icon release is now the best available globally.


    A interesting but somewhat disjointed collection of vignettes set around the Hawkesbury River Oyster industry.

    The video quality is good but at the wrong aspect ratio.

    The audio is good.

    Extras are extensive but the same as the previous release.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Tuesday, December 08, 2009
Review Equipment
DVDSony DVP-NS708H upscaling to 1080p, using HDMI output
DisplayLG Scarlet 42LG61YD 106cm Full HD LCD. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

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