Westall '66: A Suburban UFO Mystery

2010 ,    »  -   59 Comments
215
8.51
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Ratings: 8.51/10 from 197 users.
Storyline
Westall '66: A Suburban UFO Mystery

Westall '66: A Suburban UFO Mystery, directed and edited by Rosie Jones, is a riveting and unique look at what happened in the Westall suburb of Melbourne in 1966. Westall High School was the center of the biggest mass UFO sighting in Australia, yet the event was deliberately suppressed. Jones and her team try to find out why.

At the mention of UFO's, you may be bracing yourself for a film peppered with tin-hat wearing conspiracy theorists, but you may have to revise your opinion.

Candid eyewitness accounts reveal active, attentive people who have lived with a memory that brought them ridicule, and censure, but the stories they tell and the pictures they draw show that they have not forgotten what happened.

As the film progresses, a variety of techniques maintain the delicate and deliberate balance of fact and opinion. Jones marries the austerity and somberness of statistics, recordings, and interviews with playful sketches, poignant clips, and animated narration. This approach underscores a commitment to present an objective, transparent film that is visually diverse.

Jones' commitment to neutrality has a similar effect on the participants and overall tenor of the film. Consequently, we hear students, laborers, community members, researchers, and others talk about what occurred on that fateful April day, and the curious happenings that followed.

They all report seeing something above the paddock that did not look like anything they had ever seen. Some saw it land; some saw it fly away. However, they were all told by school authorities, or police, or other officials in uniform to keep quiet. Many of them were punished and ridiculed if they tried to talk about it, and so they kept silent. Still, they remember what they saw, and thus, the mystery persists.

In the end, Jones successfully delivers a film that may fascinate you, intrigue you, or simply encourage you to keep listening.

59 Comments / User Reviews

  1. dmxi

    good ol' pop-corn documentary!fascinating entertainment,if you will.
    enjoy
    with feet-up (anti-gravity-flying-position),aforementioned popcorn in
    lap(space-pickles) & an open minded smirk (no galactic void blank
    stare with gawking dropped jaw of disbelief!) on a rainy/snowy sunday!
    -one space cadet-

  2. Truth Seeker

    Why is the government so afraid of the truth? It must give them a feeling of smug superiority to know something we don't.....and to keep it secret for many years is unbelievable! What power!! Hate them for it!!

  3. DarkSpirit

    Because, like what Jack Nicholson said in "A few good men", you can't handle the truth! They are doing their jobs to protect the public from the truth. If you trust your government, then you should trust them to know what is best for you.

  4. fhade

    government is made up of people... So it should be..."Why are people so afraid of the truth? It must give them a
    feeling of smug superiority to know something other people don't.....and to keep
    it secret for many years is unbelievable! What power!! Hate people for
    it!!

  5. Think for Yourself

    When agencies conduct ruthless disinformation campaigns... threats made to silence the witnesses... it isn't to prevent panic, as no one was panicked. Most likely, the cover up was to prevent folks from realizing there was something much more evolved out there, and somebody's power base would be diminished by it.

  6. techcafe

    most UFO sightings are actually classified military projects—not extra-terrestrial beings visiting from another world. in fact, the military establishment even cooks up UFO conspiracy stories in order to confound a gullible public and divert scrutiny away from these secret military projects. it's a shame so many people are still being duped to this day.

  7. oQ

    you got the words right out of my mouth! I would also have started the phrase with "most" as there is always a possibility that "some" may exist.

  8. FollowTheFacts

    ....a fine documentary, I gave it 8, but hesitated between 7 and 8...
    Complaints would be about sound...again...mixing, background music and dialog and so forth, plus Australian accent is not my favorite and would sometimes merit subtext...imo
    But the case dealt with here is definitely compelling...
    I knew a person who used to work at Area 51 and I just...wanted to "interrogate" him to no end! – ..but never did...he is gone now...when asked about something he would just smile and the only thing he would talk about was the incredible food they were served there...I have no doubt about that...

  9. techcafe

    i say 'most' because i have no evidence that extraterrestrials do not exist; while conversely, UFOlogists also have no evidence that intelligent beings from other worlds do exist. let alone visit earth.

    meanwhile, in real life, the simplest explanation is 'most' often the correct one. in the case of UFO sightings, i just assume it's the military up to their usual tricks... wasting billions of taxpayer dollars on futuristic weapons of some kind.

  10. alvin v

    who in there right mind would ever trust there Gov.

  11. robert elliot

    You also took the words out of my mouth. Just look up "Haunebu" - the Nazis were experimenting with flying discs 70 years ago and the US and USSR snapped up all their scientists so it stands to reason the technology would have advanced quite a bit since then.

  12. Jules

    They call that plausible deniability,

    There are millions of stars and galaxies in the known universe it's inconceivable to believe that intelligent life didn't evolve elsewhere other than on earth.
    Whether they are able to travel such large distances is another issue.

  13. a_no_n

    An entire documentary of anecdotal evidence (read as not evidence.)

    safe to say my skepticism hasn't been challenged...not even a little bit.

    After watching a few minutes of this documentary, reading the blurb again made me laugh...talk about an oversell!

    i think the quote that made me laugh the most was at 40:20.

    "I believe truth can exist without proof of it."

    sums up this documentary in a nutshell as well as the attitudes of the films makers.

  14. nudda_non

    How did you manage to be the ONLY sensible comment and remain here up the top, nice and visible! Well done. Yes, the fact this got made encourages me that I too can make films!

  15. Marcus

    That's quite a strawman you're building and there's a glaring fallacy in your argument. Truth can exist with proof and also if certain elements we know to be true are purely self evident and don't rely on the search for definitive proof to define or explain it to others beyond their rational logic.

    As an example, I can say unequivocally that it is a true statement that life exists in our universe. I'm not talking about UFO's, I'm talking about microbial life. The extent and size of the universe makes it statistically impossible for this not to be true. It is also true statement that if you held an object in your hand and dropped it, that it would fall to the ground. There are many more examples of these that do not require an argument or investigation of proof to compel others to accept an assertion as true because of their inherent nature.

    In the case of Westall where it is said that something extraordinary was witnessed by a large group of individuals who could describe the same thing, that against your (ironically) anecdotal assumption in the previous comment, I'm inclined to take their word as being more truthful because there is no deviation from their description of the event nor their discomfort in discussing it, which are the 2 most compelling facets of the topic. This despite my being agnostic towards the topic of UFO's

    Conversely, and this is an important statement for skeptics, it is also a true statement that lack of evidence for something existing isn't proof for that thing to not exist "period". If the idea exists, then it just means you haven't looked hard enough to clarify the thing in question into something rational and universally acceptable. Denying something on the basis of your skepticism, without giving it any investigation and construing red herrings to divert the issue doesn't assert a profound argument against the topic. It only belies your position of ignorance.

    Ergo, I find nothing compelling about your comment to think otherwise

  16. Msdcs

    Good documentary, now we know how Kissinger got his orders.

  17. Airvaulting for Girls

    Couldn't have said it better myself. The whole UFO business is a fine thing for the military; let the sprogs giggle over the prospect of little green men in neon frisbees, it only helps as a cover for the real truth, which is top secret defense projects.

  18. dmxi

    " party-pooper's......all a'ye!!!!no pop-corn for non-believers!"
    -one p*ssed off E.T.(pilot of mentioned 'flying object' in the doc.) -

  19. Airvaulting for Girls

    Let me run down to the local watering hole real quick for a six-pack of Dos Equis and I'll be right there with you in half an hour. :)

  20. Crab_Nebula

    I like how everyone always imagines that UFO space ships are about the same size as we 'think' they should be,
    to house aliens roughly the same size as us...lol... they could be as tall as building's, or as tiny as microbes.

  21. a_no_n

    what exactly is it about my comment that makes it a Strawman argument?

    MY question to you is how can you know something to be true if you have no proof of it? You can't. You can only believe...dispite what your local pastor tells you there is an entire world of difference between truth and belief!

    You can't be agnostic about UFO's...you're mixing up you terminology there.

    Also how is striving for evidence "Ignorant"?
    That's my only gripe, that there's no evidence. There's nothing ignorant about having standards...It's better than just blindly believing everything you hear on the internet!

  22. DarkSpirit

    Some of your countrymen probably voted for them for one. What if what the aliens claim would shake the very foundations of religion and social organizations in our current world, causing mass chaos and social upheaval? Introduction of superior technologies would also cause jealousy and war among nations.

    Disclosing alien presence to a world that is not ready would do the world more harm than good. If you have watched Star Trek, there is some wisdom in a system like their Prime Directive.

  23. Libbe Bouma

    Good documentary,I like the way you present to hole docu including the style of drawing. Nice background music plus Australian accent witch I like a lot.

  24. mysterioso

    I'll bet you believe in god.

  25. a_no_n

    You'd lose your money.

  26. Think for Yourself

    Great documentary, thoughtful and informative. I meant to give it 10 stars but accidentally hit the wrong spot, which lowered the scale. Sorry…

    I agree with the author that it’s NOT likely this flying object was
    a military test. As the author points out, if this was a test, surely decades later we would see the military openly operating a functioning version of the prototype. Hasn’t happened.

    And why would the military conduct top secret tests next to a populated area? Doesn’t make sense. Furthermore, the docu points out that there were sightings in the area a couple of days prior to the sighting at the school. Those previous sightings might explain the military presence in the area by the time this object was seen at the school two days later.

    Sad that the witnesses were bullied into silence… This documentary helps redress this wrong to some extent. Thank you!

  27. Daniel

    You could have had a better guess, and said that he was a skeptic, probably a skeptic in the vain of Michael Shermer.

    Other than that he is probably an orthodox, rationalist, materialist scientific minded person.

    And of course, entirely ignorant in his knowledge of reality, such as the skeptic so often is.

  28. Katnea3

    Hmmm, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to find out that "nudda_non" and "a_no_n" are in fact the same person? (hah)

  29. Independence Day

    Oh dude, Bill Chalker! that's the ex Vietnam vet who got abducted by aliens who then did [sexual] tests on him and now he's an alcoholic who dusts crop fields for a living.

  30. Useful Eater

    Why would your "skepticism" be challenged?

    You would stop being skeptic if what?If this video gave you irrefutable truth?
    That's not skepticism.
    I mean even if the video contained a head of sate saying UFOs were real and showed you an alien you could remain a skeptic while simultaneously believing completely in UFOs and aliens.
    Your comments reveal your own bias,I do agree the doc is just blather though.

  31. a_no_n

    I would stop being skeptical if it showed me evidence...Simple as that, showing me an alien would certainly do the trick.

  32. Bob

    This offered One thing, the part about the headlights of the car. How when the object began to move(operate), the headlight beams at a point near the object, were curving towards the object. The only One who knew where the objects came from when speaking was the old lady in black and white:)

  33. a_no_n

    because coming up with kooky conspiracy theories certainly beats trying to come up with a rational argument eh?

  34. a_no_n

    unless all the "Silencing of witnesses" is just hearsay...after all besides anecdotes there isn't a single scrap of evidence for ANY of this. and as i've said earlier on anecdotes are not evidence.

  35. a_no_n

    Define truth.

  36. Katnea3

    Naaaah, it's because you not only write very similar to each other, but even your name's are similar to each other as well. (shrug)

  37. a_no_n

    because it's so hard to imagine that 2 out of 8 billion people might come up with a vaguely similar name based on a popular internet term...

  38. over the edge

    I am going to settle this so we can get back on topic. As far as I can tell they are two different people. Also while I do not always agree with a_no_n I have never felt the need to question his credability. Unless you can prove they are the same person this avenue of discussion is closed.

  39. Joe Schmoe

    I am always cautious and skeptical regarding this topic. However, I do believe there is something to these types of encounters, as a whole. To those immediately dismissive of the subject, I suggest a couple of points to consider relative to "evidence":
    1) Relative to first-hand accounts: When it comes to eye-witness accounts, many of us in the Western world live in society, with systems of justice, wherein people are convicted by their peers and punished based solely on the first-hand testimony of others.
    2) Relative to lack of photo/video proof: how many photos/videos exist of automobile accidents taken right as they occur? Probably as many as there are of anomalous objects available on social media currently.
    3) Credibility of witnesses: Certainly there are those out there that are eccentric, simply seeking attention or straight mentally ill that report these types of encounters. However, the scope and scale of the population involved, across every geographical boundary and culture, there have been reported encounters and/or sightings.
    Just 20-30 years ago, study of black holes was border-line pseudo-science, extremely controversial and considered detrimental to careers of those in scientific community. Theoretically, it was likely, but no one had first-hand account. Conversely, with respect to the phenomena here, there are plenty of former military officials, pilots, and even astronauts that have provided their own encounters. Statistically, can we rule them all as insane, delusional, mistaken or suffering from mass hysteria? What if just one is right?

  40. jessij

    I want to know what happened to Tania!!

  41. georgiypotulov

    Evidence? You're thinking too much in black and white, just look at the historical drawings and cave paintings to get some of that needed evidence for a start.

  42. techcafe

    oh i doubt an advanced alien race would find us humans all that interesting. we're far too primitive, still... endless conflict & warfare, a planet awash in guns & bombs, terrorism, violence & murder, greed & gluttony, environmental destruction, yadayadayada.

    we have nothing to offer them.

  43. georgiypotulov

    I never said they would find us interesting. The only thing I said was that that you are wrong when it comes to there being no evidence or clues. The evidence is all around us-from mayflower to ancient paintings, texts, even cave paintings!

  44. georgiypotulov

    The only reason they'd come by here is either to study our planet or to keep an eye on us so we don't blow ourselves AND the other species along with it. I agree, we are quite self centered and deluded to think that they would want to make contact with us. The only thing they might be interested is making sure humans don't blow the world up, they know just how primitive we are. I like the case of our missiles being disabled by one of these things, even some people claim tunguska to have had et intervention. ( of course this is all speculation) I and my roommate have seen some incredibly weird ****, i guess this was the only reason I felt like I wanted to share.

  45. techcafe

    cave paintings? you call that 'evidence'?? hahaha. please. there is no verifiable evidence of extraterrestrial life, period.

  46. georgiypotulov

    If we found that life can exist in extreme conditions and even in outer space-given the sheer size of the universe, I'd say it's safe to say that extra terrestrial life does in fact exist.

  47. anon

    if i could only have one question answered with a full explanation id accept theres no such thing as a ufo...so heres my question what do we have that can travel from one end off the horizon to the other in a click off a finger...still waiting ...guess ill be waiting as long as the dead people in this video ...

  48. mysterioso

    I'll bet you believe in god. For which there is absolutely zero evidence. Not even anecdotal.

  49. mysterioso

    Show me god, then I'll believe. Simple as that.

  50. a_no_n

    nope, athieist.

  51. a_no_n

    I agree with you there.

    That's the problem with assumptions...sometimes they're wrong.

  52. Carl Hendershot

    Different from the norm and I found it very interesting.

  53. Jason13

    I wish everybody would learn a bit about how eyewitness testimony is incredibly unreliable. We like to think "we know what we saw," but we really don't. I know that can be unsettling, but it's true.

    If you're looking to kill 45 minutes watching a fun documentary, just watch some TED talks about eyewitness testimony or watch any brain-centric programs about perception. (Just consider the sources, beware of neuro-bunk!)

    Those sorts of programs may help you consider these types of cases in a new and interesting light :-)

  54. agent_788

    I think the people who are living with the blinkers on and believe everything they are told and follow all the rules are usually the skeptics - the more open minded individual is usually the non skeptic when it comes to the subject of alien life - but the fact remains we are not alone - whether you like it or not

  55. Tarek

    Its a real flying object, but its highly likely from the evidence in this film, that this was a secret black project, and not an alien craft. The fact that military type people were on the scene in minutes is significant, they were on standby.
    The governments lie to us in clever ways, just enough spin and staged acting to put us off the scent into thinking its aliens.
    I am not ruling out possibility that alien / interdimensional beings and craft could exist, but dont choose the choices presented to you, make your own informed choice.

  56. jimmy zhim

    excellent although it's no longer available?

  57. Remsey

    I have seen a so called UFO in 1994 the Netherlands. It was an experience that made a lot of impact. It flew low and made a full stop from I guess 300km/hr to 0. It then made a cross shaped sign horizontally (left/middle/right/middle and continued its journey. My mother said...do you see it! Do you see it! I said yes yes and by then it was gone. It changed my view of life and I am 100% convinced we are not alone in this universe. My opinion: They only show themselves to individuals. They will not land on a square in a big city because they respect our lives. They do collect organic material and perhaps they terraform other planets with our life. Earth may even be terraformed in the past. After all life developed on earth with an enourmous speed. One earth layer it was not present, the next it was.

  58. Fred

    Another famous case, at least in Australia, is the "Disappearance of Frederick Valentich" (see Wikipedia page). Interesting.

  59. TB

    Having been there at that time I can tell you all this was no balloon or man-made device. Nothing...not even today...moves that fast and in silence

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