Two Hands (1999 film)

Two Hands (1999 film)

name = Two Hands

caption = Australian DVD Cover
director = Gregor Jordan
producer =Marian Macgowan
writer = Gregor Jordan
starring = Heath Ledger, Bryan Brown, Rose Byrne, David Field
music =
cinematography =
editing = Lee Smith
distributor =
released = July 29 1999
runtime =
language =English
budget =
imdb_id =0145547|

"Two Hands" is a 1999 Australian crime film, written and directed by Gregor Jordan. [cite book|authorlink=Powderfinger|title=Fingerprints: The Best of Powderfinger, 1994-2000|pages=3|publisher=Universal Music|date=2004-10-30] The film stars Heath Ledger as Jimmy, a young man in debt to Pando, a local gangster, played by Bryan Brown and also stars Mariel McClorey, Evan Sheaves, Susie Porter, and Rose Byrne. It won the Australian Film Institute Award for Best Film in 1999. It was filmed in 1998 but was not released in Australia until July 29 1999. Before its release, it was screened at the Sundance Film Festival in the United States but was not released to DVD in the US until December 2005.


"Two Hands" is set in locations around Sydney, starting in the red light district of Kings Cross. Jimmy, while working at a strip club, is approached by local mob boss Pando who says he has work for him. Pando gives Jimmy $10,000 to deliver to a woman in Bondi, and when she appears not to be home, he goes for a swim on the beach. Unfortunately the $10,000 is stolen by street kids while he is swimming, leaving him heavily indebted to the understandably furious Pando and his gang.

The car Jimmy was using on the job - a Ford Falcon belonging to Pando's associate Acko - is stolen by a young man and taken to a mechanic with the intention to sell the car. The mechanic happens to be a friend of Acko's, who, displeased at the news of his car being stolen, suspects Jimmy's involvement.

Jimmy comes up with a plan to pay off the debt by robbing a bank the next day in Bankstown, New South Wales along with two others. The night before he arranges to meet new friend and love interest Alex at a pub. Unfortunately the meeting's arrangements are heard by Les, a friend jealous of Alex's attraction to Jimmy and keen to get in with Pando's gang. After informing the gang of the couple's whereabouts, Jimmy is forced to flee the pub with Alex, attempting to escape on the Sydney Monorail, however the escape proves unsuccessful and Jimmy is taken to a remote location where the gang plan to kill him. Through the indirect intervention of Jimmy's dead brother (who acts as a guardian angel figure throughout the film), Jimmy is able to escape alive, and make his way back home to prepare for the bank robbery.

The robbery is not without its problems, as the getaway driver is killed by the police but is on the whole successful. Jimmy gets the money he needs, escaping in a stolen Toyota Celica with his remaining accomplice. Ironically, the stolen auto's radio station bumper sticker is spotted by the station's competition team, and Jimmy wins a $10,000 prize. Not needing the money, and wanting to remain conspicuous after robbing a bank, he rams the station's Ford Explorer off the road.

Jimmy returns to Pando's office to pay off his debt, but thinking he has a gun the gang once again attempt to kill him. Luckily he is able to give them the money before he is killed, and is now offered more work by Pando for his impressive performance escaping the gang on their first attempt to kill him. Jimmy leaves in disgust after pulling a gun on Pando, and the movie ends with Jimmy and Alex buying tickets at an airport to a location 'up north', away from the pressures of life in Sydney. As Jimmy leaves, one of the street kids passes Jimmy, and in retaliation for the death of her friend shoots Pando and all his mates.

Extended/Alternate Ending

The Australian DVD released film ends as described above and does not feature any other type of ending as an extra or outtake on the DVD. However the televised version of the film featured a longer ending. Immediately after the scene with Jimmy and Alex purchasing their air tickets, is a scene where Jimmy’s brother Michael delivers a brief monologue completing the karmic message of the film. A beam of light shines down from the heavens and Michael attempts to run to the light, however he is grabbed by a series of hands which erupt from the ground and pull him back down into the earth that he escaped from in the opening introduction scene of the film.


The soundtrack featured the Powderfinger single "These Days", the video for which was compiled with footage from "Two Hands". Other songs were mostly contributed by Australian artists. Cezary Skubiszewski also contributed original music to the soundtrack

Track listing

#"These Days" by Powderfinger
#"Lucky Star" by Alex Lloyd
#"Walking Kings X" by Cezary Skubiszewski
#"What Does it Matter" by Primary
#"Stadium" by Skunkhour
#"Dark State of Mind" by Tuatara
#"Belter" by Powderfinger
#"Staircase" by Cezary Skubiszewski
#"Down in Splendour" by Straightjacket Fits
#"Heavenly Sublime" by Tracky Dax
#"Fletcher's House" by Cezary Skubiszewski
#"Two Hands" by Kate Cebrano
#"Love Theme" by Cezary Skubiszewski
#"This Guy's In Love" by The Reels
#"Kare Kare" by Crowded House

Awards and nominations

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AFI Awards:

*Won: Best Film
*Won: Best Director (Gregor Jordan)
*Won: Best Supporting Actor (Bryan Brown)
*Won: Best original Screenplay (Gregor Jordan)
*Won: Best Film Editing (Lee Smith)
*Nominated: Best Achievement in Costume Design
*Nominated: Best Achievement in Sound
*Nominated: Best Original Music Score
*Nominated: Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role (Heath Ledger)
*Nominated: Best Performance by an Actress in a supporting Role (Susie Porter)

Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards
*Won: Best Film
*Won: Best Supporting Actress (Susie porter)
*Won: Best Supporting actor (Bryan Brown)
*Nominated: Best Actor - Male (Heath Ledger)
*Nominated: Best Cinematography
*Nominated: Best Director (Gregor Jordan)
*Nominated: Best Music Score
*Nominated: Best Screenplay(Gregor Jordan)

Stockholm Film Festival

Nominated: Bronze Horse(Gregor Jordan)

"'Queensland Premier's Literary Awards

Won: Film Script - the Pacific Film and Television Commission Award (Gregor Jordan)


External links

*imdb title|id=0145547|title=Two Hands
* [;adv=yes;group=;groupequals=;holdingType=;page=0;parentid=;query=Number%3A414217;querytype=;rec=0;resCount=10 Two Hands at the National Film and Sound Archive]

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