Rats In The Ranks

  • 1996
  • 1 HR 38 MIN
  • NR
  • Documentary, Political

If a documentary about small-town politics sounds like a bit of a snore, you haven't seen how they play the game in the Municipality of Leichhardt, Australia. Each year, Leichhardt holds its mayoral race, with the 12 town council members, organized along various party lines, voting on behalf of their constituencies. What may sound quaint by Washington standards...read more

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Reviewed by Ken Fox
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If a documentary about small-town politics sounds like a bit of a snore, you haven't seen how they play the game in the Municipality of Leichhardt, Australia. Each year, Leichhardt holds its mayoral race, with the 12 town council members, organized along various

party lines, voting on behalf of their constituencies. What may sound quaint by Washington standards is, in reality, anything but: These folks are out for blood and, above all else, themselves. Focusing on the week leading up to the 1994 election, filmmakers Bob Connolly and Robin Anderson have

managed to capture a host of gory details as promises are shamelessly broken and reputations slandered, leaving one backstabber to wonder how another can sleep at night. And sitting on top of the heap is Larry Hand, Leichhardt's incumbent mayor with three terms under his belt and no intention of

stepping down. Hand plans his strategies with all the aplomb of an Aussie Machiavelli, calling in markers, currying favor where it counts and playing his aldermen (and women) off one another. The scope may be small, the stakes relatively low, but the breadth of the treachery and the depth of

deceit is positively Jacobean.

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  • Released: 1996
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: If a documentary about small-town politics sounds like a bit of a snore, you haven't seen how they play the game in the Municipality of Leichhardt, Australia. Each year, Leichhardt holds its mayoral race, with the 12 town council members, organized along v… (more)

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