A fun genre flick with a knowing angle on the post-apocalyptic genre, Ché Baker’s Blue World Order is bound to make some fans of end of the world movies happy. Filled with action and familiar tropes like grisly mutants, wasteland car chases (with DeLoreans!), and a theme where just one child remains in a world gone wild, it impressed me with its look and complete conviction in its own story. In this interview Mr. Baker discusses the making of the film and where his inspirations came from.
Talk a little bit about the ideas behind BLUE WORLD ORDER. I liked that Billy Zane’s character started out as an ordinary man and became a major villain. It reminded me of the General Bethlehem character that Will Patton played in Kevin Costner’s The Postman.
Blue World Order is a little bit like medicine delivered in a sugary pill, in that I wanted to explore some serious themes whilst wrapping them up in a fun adventure film. I wanted to create two philosophies that, in their own right, are completely legitimate – and yet in this scenario they cannot co-exist. It also ultimately asks about how much of our freedoms do we give up for our security? It’s a common question and one that’s back in the news again today. Does the end justify the means? I wanted people to walk away from this and see both points of view and maybe wonder if our ‘Heroes’ were right or wrong. When the rules change, when structure is gone, who steps up to fill the void? Billy Zane, that’s who!
The film looks really good, particularly for an indie film.
You’re welcome. I spend a lot of time watching and reviewing very low budget indie post-apocalyptic films, and Blue World Order was really nice looking. Talk about the locations you filmed at, as well as the cameras you used.
It was designed to show off the locations around my home town of Canberra in Australia. I wanted to show that we could make any kind of film here, and not just political thrillers Canberra is Australia’s Capital city. Virtually everything on-screen is within 15 minutes drive of each other! One of the great things about shooting here is we get a huge variety of locations in a small area, so it’s great ‘bang for buck’ on screen. We had an old abandoned Brickworks, a Glassworks, some Caves in a cute town called ‘Wee-Jasper’ and used a dried lake bed just outside town for the car chase. There was also our local telecommunications tower that looms over the city. We’re actually setting up a little self-guided tour of all the locations so people visiting Canberra can have a few places to check out and look around! Most of the film was shot on the Blackmagic 4k Production camera, but there were also a variety of drones, DSLRs, Go-Pros and the Cannon C500 for the low light caves shoots.
I noticed Bruce Spence had a little role in the movie. Clearly, you have an affinity for the end of the world genre. Say something about working with Bruce, and your interest in the apocalyptic genre.
We were very fortunate with our casting. An example of this was screen legend Bruce Spence. There was never anyone else I wanted for ‘The Whippet’. Some roles are just written with a certain actor in mind, and even when I was writing the Novel for Blue World Order, I always pictured Bruce as the twisted torturer. The irony is, that he’s just one of the most lovely men! The professionalism and gravitas that people like Bruce Spence, Jack Thompson and Billy Zane bring to the project help with everything, the whole crew feels it and steps up.
Say something about the climactic chase scene through the wasteland in DeLoreans. I’m just going out on a limb here, but did you only have one DeLorean to use in that scene (enhanced with special effects), or did you have all those cars? It’s a really nifty scene.
An author friend of mine, Matthew Reilly, had recently moved to LA and left me in charge of his beloved Delorean… and the rule is, you don’t get a DeLorean and NOT use it! In the film, there’s a massive EMP that knocks out the electronics, so all the ‘modern’ cars are useless. The transport is made up of salvaged, mechanical only vehicles. So we have a whole Mad Max vs Delorean chase through the desert. Then I thought, what’s cooler than a DeLorean in a car chase? The answer was obvious: Ten DeLoreans in a car chase! The DeLorean fleet is all real, there are no CGI cars. I actually managed to get a whole fleet of them, nearly all of the ones in the country, in one spot at one time! What a great bunch of guys they were.
Who is this film’s audience, do you think?
The film actually has a much wider appeal than what we initially set out for. It was made for a 14-year old version of myself, but as we developed, some more serious themes grew and we find that people of all ages and genders can really enjoy the film. I think I’m particularly proud the film has great rewatch value – it’s something you can enjoy even more the second and third time round with a little bit of knowledge up your sleeve.
If you were to find yourself a survivor in the world of Blue World Order, do you think you’d make it as a survivor?
The part of the world we see in the Blue World Order film is a tiny glimpse at a much bigger world. It’s a place where the rules of society have crumbled, and yet there are those who seek to reinforce those rules, even it it’s by dubious means. I think I’d miss coffee a lot, but I’d probably survive. Jake survives because he has a sense of purpose – I think if I knew what we know at the end of the film, I’d survive because I’d have a sense of purpose. The hardest thing for people when you take away the framework of society is to know why they’re actually trying to survive. What’s the point? I’m sure I’d do okay once I learned what the real situation was.