Watch trailer: Leah Purcell tackles the Australian outback in The Legend of Molly Johnson

Described by writer, director and star Leah Purcell as “a story about a woman who will go to great lengths to protect those she loves,” The Legend of Molly Johnson takes audiences back to Australia in 1893. The western follows Molly (Purcell), a pregnant woman trying to survive the harsh Australian landscape and protect her children. “Cross me and I’ll kill you,” she warns an intruder in a new trailer for the pic.

Molly forms a bond with Yadaka (Rob Collins), an Aboriginal fugitive, and “secrets about her true identity are revealed,” hints the film’s synopsis. A deadly encounter between the couple and a local police officer “results in a tragic chain of events, with Molly becoming a symbol of feminism and anti-racism.”

When we asked Purcell what inspired her to become a director, Goa-Gungarri-Wakka actress, writer and activist Wakka Murri answered: “To tell First Nations stories drawn mainly from my family history, putting heart and soul into otherwise politicized First Nations issues. Giving our stories their authentic voice but maintaining a commercial focus to appeal to a wide and diverse audience.”

The Legend of Molly Johnson opens in select theaters and digital platforms on August 19.

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