For years Adam Goodes was a national sports hero in Australia. Twice he received the Brownlow Medal, an annual award for the “fairest and best” player in Australian rules football (a kind of rugby). When a 13-year-old female fan called him an ape and he had her removed from the stadium, the popularity of this son of an Aboriginal mother and Irish-Scottish father rapidly declined. When he was named Australian of the Year in 2014, the animosity towards the brilliant player only increased. The booing at him during games became a national controversy, one that continues to this day.
In The Australian Dream, Goodes and various leading figures in Australian journalism and sports look back on the affair. With extensive archive footage, the film not only tells Goodes’s personal story, but also the history of the Aboriginal Australians. Goodes said goodbye to the sport and became an outspoken advocate of indigenous rights. A powerful film about race and identity in a country with its own distinct but all-too-recognizable racism debate.