2:37 is a 2006 Australian drama film, written, produced, and directed by filmmaker Murali K. Thalluri and starring an ensemble cast including Teresa Palmer, Joel Mackenzie, Frank Sweet, Charles Baird, Sam Harris, Marni Spillane and Clementine Mellor. 2:37 was filmed in Adelaide, Australia on location at St. Ignatius' College.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Murali K. Thalluri|
|Produced by||Kent Smith|
Murali K. Thalluri
Nick Remy Matthews
|Written by||Murali K. Thalluri|
|Music by||Mark Tschanz|
|Cinematography||Nick Remy Matthews|
|Edited by||Dale Roberts|
Murali K. Thalluri
Nick Remy Matthews
|Distributed by||Roadshow Entertainment|
|Box office||A $447,290 (Australia)|
A contemporary, ensemble drama telling the complex tale of six high school students whose lives are interwoven. All six students have their own personal problems and goals.
The story takes place during a normal school day. At precisely 2:37 a tragic suicide will occur, affecting the lives of a group of students and their teachers. As the story unfolds, the individual stories of the six teenagers are revealed, each with their own personal significance. This eventually leads up to one of the characters taking their own life. An unwanted pregnancy unravels a terrible, dark family secret; all is not as it appears for the seemingly confident school football hero; an outcast must deal with everyday taunts from his peers due to a physical ailment; a beautiful young girl battles an eating disorder; a stellar student constantly struggles to win his parents' approval while another uses drugs to escape from his own demons.
The director says he was inspired to make the film by a suicide of a friend and his own suicide attempt.
The film encountered early commercial success, generating more than three times its production costs in distribution sales. Another victory for the film was a 17-minute standing ovation at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival.
Critics and audiences were divided in their reaction, particularly regarding the graphic teenage suicide scene at the end of the film and a rape scene between a brother and a young sister. Some mental health groups described the film as "dangerous", with concerns that it will lead to copycat suicides. Variety's Justin Chang has described it as "A queasy exploitation picture masquerading as a serious dramatic treatment of teen suicide". Preview screenings reportedly led to some audience members walking out or fainting in response to the graphic rape and suicide scenes. Other critics claimed that the film is too similar to Gus Van Sant's 2003 film Elephant.
However, some critics praised the movie. Urban Cinefile calls it "a stunning debut" for Thalluri, who made the film at the age of 20. The Age's Tracee Hutchison described the film as "beautiful," saying that it "should be screened to year 11 and 12 students in every high school", although the film's R18+ rating in Australia means that this cannot legally occur. The film's rating has been very disappointing for Thalluri, who has been quoted as being "gutted" that the intended audience of young teenagers will not have the opportunity to view the film. Thalluri has stated that the purpose of the suicide scene was to depict the suffering and regret of the suicide victim, and to dispel any implication that the act of suicide is easy or simple.
Further controversy has arisen around Thalluri's claims that the movie was written about a friend Kelly Mason, who sent him a video suicide note before taking her life. Investigations by The Australian questioned the existence of Thalluri's friend, as well as other statements he has made about events in his own life which led to the film's creation. His cousin Ann has publicly defended his story and Thalluri himself called the claims "offensive", "rude" and "ridiculous".
2:37 grossed $447,290 at the box office in Australia.
- 2006 – France – Cannes Film Festival
- 2006 – Canada – Toronto International Film Festival
- 2006 – Australia – Melbourne International Film Festival (Opening Night Selection)
- 2006 – Japan – Tokyo International Film Festival
- 2006 – United States – AFI Film Festival (American Film Institute Festival)
- 2006 – India – Osians International Film Festival
- 2006 – Greece – Thessaloniki International Film Festival
- 2007 – Turkey – International Istanbul Film Festival
- 2007 – United States – Philadelphia International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
- Andrew L Urban, "THALLURI, MURALI K. – 2:37", Urban Cinefilem 17 August 2006 accessed 4 December 2012
- Choose life Sydney Morning Herald. 11 August 2006.
- Graphic movie suicide "a risk" The Age. 26 July 2006.
- 2:37 Review Variety. 26 May 2006.
- Thalluri's 2:37 'too much like Elephant' Archived 9 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine Ninemsn. 28 May 2006.
- 2:37 Urban Cinefile.
- R rating shackles, not protects, teenagers The Age. 29 July 2006.
- On and up for philanthropic director Archived 9 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine Ninemsn. 31 July 2006.
- A violent change of direction The Sydney Morning Herald. 26–27 August 2006.
- Director's suicide claim 'fiction' Archived 22 August 2006 at the Wayback Machine The Australian. 19 August 2006.
- A letter of support The Adelaide Advertiser. 24 August 2006.
- "Film Victoria - Australian Films at the Australian Box Office" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 February 2011. Retrieved 9 October 2010.
- "Festival de Cannes: 2:37". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 16 December 2009.