she is a headstrong and proper british woman, daughter of a brilliant but ruthless land developer who has gone missing in the australian outback, thought to be captured by aboriginal savages. he is a convicted criminal who was banished to australia to serve his sentence in the wild. he has scrapped by on raffishness and chivalry alone, and is now attempting to make a name for himself as an outback tourguide/bodyguard.
despite their natural dislike for each other, these two end up on an adventurous mission to find the missing father. their cause is helped tremendously by jackman's aboriginal friend and guru whose loincloth and spear belie his wisdom and authenticity. though kidman is reluctant to take advice from this "savage," she is forced to reckon with the question of who are the real savages in this colonial world? are they the criminals and natives, as she has always believed, or the businessmen like her father who would destroy their fragile culture in the name of the (australian) dollar.
no good epic about a british colony would be complete without a certain dose of "fuck you england" and in this aspect "australia" does not disappoint. though our heroine may find her father, can she ever find her way back to the comfortable superiority and advantage of her former life? armed with a newfound respect for the land she hated and accompanied by the man she grew to love, kidman's eventual "fuck you" to england reminds of us of that other great ozzie-starring epic "braveheart," which i have also not seen but am sure i know everything about.