Movie Review : McLean’s Money


Edward McLean (Szeps) is a successful and very wealthy business man. He suffers a medical emergency which lands him in the hospital. During his stay he encounters two people who will change his life. The first is a local drug baron Bernard Mueller (Gubbay) and the second is the hospital’s chaplain Father Joyce (Mailath).

Mueller has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and Father Joyce is not only searching for ways to save your soul from eternal damnation, he is also searching for funds to rebuild his parish church. This gives Edward an idea….. how would his family react if he told them he was terminally ill and was donating all his worldly goods to charity. As you can imagine, the results are mixed.

Edward has 3 sons and together with their various wives and children, they all react in different ways. His sons are all tackling their own personal issues….one is struggling with life and on a whim, has decided he wants to join the priesthood. One is a lovable buffoon who has a heart of gold but has never quite reached his potential. The third is recently unemployed under vaguely suspicious circumstances.


Firstly I would like to mention that this movie was filmed entirely in Newcastle. The Director, Gerald Lawson, is a local man and chose to showcase some of the gorgeous scenery of our hometown. For this reason alone, I was thrilled to have had the opportunity to see this movie on the big screen.

As far as the movie goes, I have seen better and I have seen worse. The script is a good story but I felt that there were too many characters and not enough time to develop any of them. The acting ranged from highly skilled to clunky, as one would expect from a movie that is an independent and, I assume, relied on a lot of local possibly raw talent during filming.

But the real triumph here is that this movie was even made at all. At the screening I attended, I was lucky enough to hear the Director speak briefly about his movie. He is a passionate film maker and this was a labour of love. The script was written way back in 2009 and to snare the talents of his leading man Szeps, he literally walked up to his front door, knocked and asked. That’s one gutsy man.

This movie is what it’s all about. Someone with a story to tell and the faith to do whatever it takes to get their vision out there. There were no million dollar backers here…. no movie star actors to drag in the masses…. no teams of script writers to perfect each line…. and from what I have been told, no excessive diva demands or unmanageable riders from the actors. And booooo to nice, professional actors. I get a chance to get some real gossip from a Director and all his actors are wonderful to work with? I feel let down by my fellow Novacastrians. Come on guys….. give me something to work with here! 😉

I encourage any local person to go and see this movie at Tower Cinemas, Newcastle. I am unsure of anywhere else this movie is showing but it is my understanding that if support is good enough, it may open at other cinemas. Support our local film makers and actors. Support our local talent. Support the Aussie movie industry. Don’t allow our stories to be told by anyone else but Aussies. We have the talent and the people to make this all happen but they need our support as well.

Love Flick x

Director : Gerald Lawson

Starring : Henri Szeps, Rod Ansell, Justin Bullock, Kate Carruthers, David Gubbay, Tracy Ebbetts, Matt Halliday, Kay Gwynne, Paul J. Mailath

Running Time :

Release Date : In Cinemas Now


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