Gold is a 2022 Australian survival thriller movie directed by Anthony Hayes. Starring Zac Efron, Susie Porter, and Anthony Hayes. The movie had a limited release on January 13, 2022, and then premiered on the Stan streaming service on January 26, 2022. It received positive reviews from critics.
Survival horror drama “Gold” marks the directorial debut of Australian actor and director Anthony Hayes. It is about two unknown men who travel to an unknown place but encounter an incident that changes their lives completely. Although the movie is set in the near future, the place or location where the main characters are or travel to is not mentioned in the narrative.
“Gold” does well enough on casual viewing, but its glaring superficiality becomes clearer the more thought we put into it, and its unexciting bare-bones plot that tries to speak to the ugliness of human greed doesn’t bring much joy either.
Gold: Movie Synopsis
The movie first takes place in a grainy, dusty desert landscape with barren trees, and the onscreen text calls it “some time, somewhere, not far from now”. The unnamed man, played by Zac Efron (and will therefore be referred to by the actor’s name as the characters in the film will remain unnamed), is seen traveling in a freight train compartment and eating a piece of bread.
At the other end of the compartment is a woman and her child, both looking hungrily at the food. This seems to warm Efron’s heart and he offers her the rest of the bread before he gets to his station. The location is a dilapidated base but seemingly serves as a connection point to an area called The Compound, where Efron’s character plans to go. He asks for a man to take him to the location, but the staff at the base are as inhospitable as the barren desert all around.
As he relieves himself in a dirty makeshift washroom, a second man, played by Anthony Hayes, arrives on the scene. The two quickly make their way to The Compound, and Hayes’ character appears to be opportunistic from the get-go as he charges the other man extra money for gas and water. After they drive into the desert and drive through a barren, habitable landscape, Hayes’ car breaks down with a flat tire and they have to pull over.
Efron helps with the problem as he repairs a puncture and witnesses the harsh reality of the area when a wild dog attacks and tries to kill another for food. Hayes intervenes in such a cannibalistic act and perhaps does the humane thing by killing the injured dog, thereby relieving its pain.
Soon, the two are on the move again, and when they stop to rest that night, Efron reveals why he’s going to The Compound. He shows his companion an advertising brochure offering a great life to those who move into The Compound. Since Hayes seems to be more used to this position than the other younger man, he warns Efron against the most misleading advertisements that big corporations are currently putting out to attract cheap labor.
The next day they continue driving again, but problems arise when the car breaks down due to some engine or hydraulic failure. As the two men try to find a solution to their immediate problem, Efron suddenly discovers a piece of shiny rock sticking out of the ground.
He moves away from the loose sand covering the rock and calls Hayes to take a look, and their tests confirm that they have found a huge gold nugget stuck in the ground in the middle of the desert. At first, he tries to get the rock out with his hands and tie it to the car, but he realizes that the nugget is much larger than it actually appears.
The two decide to split up as one would have to go to the nearest town to get the digger while the other would have to stay back and protect the gold. Although Hayes initially offers to stay back, Efron insists that he would rather stay and protect their newfound treasure. Hayes finally drives off with his now repaired car, and Efron prepares to spend the next four or five days alone in the harsh open countryside.
Gold Ending Explained: What Happened At The End?
As Efron is dragged and eaten by a vicious pack of wild dogs, Anthony Hayes’ character is finally seen a short distance from Efron’s camp. Hayes seems to have made his own camp, where he appears to have stayed for at least two or three days, with his car and digger ready to wait beside him. Looking through binoculars at Efron’s ultimate fate as he is killed by the forces of nature, it becomes clear that Hayes was actually waiting for his partner to die so he could take and keep all the gold. alone.
After Efron is finally dead, Hayes arrives at the scene and gets out to check the area. He sees a gold nugget and goes back to the car to get something. As he returns, an arrow goes straight through his chest and the man instantly falls dead to the ground. The “gold” here is black and the credits roll.
Again, it is very obvious that she is the twin, the scavenger who killed Hayes, as she was seen earlier with the crossbow. It’s evident that after she left Efron, she too was hiding on some nearby hill, waiting for the man to die so she could clean up his things. Also, it seems like she lit those little fires around Efron to protect him from the dogs, to make him understand what he was doing in the desert, not to actually protect him.
“Gold’s message is about a cutthroat competitive world where human nature and virtues have been scrapped by personal greed. While it is unclear whether anyone will actually retrieve the golden nugget in the end, it is almost certain that the woman will return to the site to review her kill. If that happens, then she will be the one to find the gold nugget with a digger ready to pull it out of the ground. She might even walk away with that big chunk of gold to a new life as a corporate boss in the Conclave. Who knows? In my honest opinion, none of this is worth thinking about.
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