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With the 1986 movie Crocodile Dundee, Paul Hogan basically single-handedly gave Hollywood the irrefutable proof that Australia really does exist. The relatively low-budget comedy was a huge box-office hit and eventually spawned two sequels.

Directed by Peter Faiman, the film sees Sue Charlton (Linda Kozlowski), the feature writer for a New York newspaper, travel to the Australian outback where she is meant to meet a bushman who reportedly fought with a crocodile and lived, minus one leg. She finds that the man in question, nicknamed Mick "Crocodile" Dundee, probably embellished that story a little seeing as he still has his two legs. He takes the disillusioned Sue on an expedition where she finally gets to understand why he's something of a local legend as he takes on kangaroo shooters, subdues large animals using an unusual technique and takes part in an aboriginal tribal dance. She decides to take him back to New York with her partly because she could expand her story but also because she likes him despite the love triangle this creates as she was supposed to marry her boyfriend, who runs her newspaper.

The film then turns into a fish-out-of-water comedy focusing on Mick Dundee's culture clash as he walks around New York City, struggles to figure out what a bidet does, proves he has the biggest knife in the streets and meets all kinds of random characters. It's easy to see why the film was such a success upon its release: Paul Hogan's confident, tough yet detached demeanour as Dundee makes him a likeable, more light-hearted version of Dirty Harry and, much like the character himself, the film has an effortless charm to it even if it relies a lot on Australian stereotypes. There's not much to the story but it's straight-forward and amusing enough that it's hard to really complain about it. This is a typical 80's comedy in the vein of, say, Splash except it's shot through an Australian filter which makes it more original than others in the same genre.

Crocodile Dundee may not be a laugh riot and it won't change your life but it's a fun comedy with enough charm, quotable lines and memorable moments to make it worth a watch.


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