Wirriya – Small Boy (2004)

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Wirriya: Small Boy is a 26 minute documentary that explores an ordinary day in the life of a young Aboriginal boy, Ricco.

Ricco is 8; he is cheeky, bright and adventurous and lives on a small Aboriginal community nestled on the outskirts of Alice Springs in Central Australia. Wirriya: Small Boy is a moving and humorous documentary that follows Ricco throughout an ordinary day in his life.

An observational documentary about Ricco Japaljarri Martin who lives in Hidden Valley with his foster mother.

26 minute documentary
Director: Beck Cole
Language: Warlpiri

Wirriya – Small Boy (2004) from CAAMA on Vimeo.

The film was shot over a period of 2 months in Central Australia. The location crew was minimal, consisting of the director/camera woman, BECK COLE and sound recordist VANCE GLYNN.

Stylistically, the documentary is observational and was shot of a miniDV camera. The documentary is primarily set at the Hidden Valley community, although other locations include the school, pool and town library.
RICCO JAPALJARRI MARTIN provides the narration for the film- it is his story, told in his words.

DVD available from Ronin Films.
Further clips and teachers notes are available from Australian Screen. If you intend to use this film in the classroom please purchase an educational copy from Ronin Films.

Wirriya Press Release

Awards and Screenings

2006 Asia Pacific Triennial, Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane.
2005 ImagineNative Film Festival (Toronto)
2005 Garma Festival, Gulkula NT
2005 Guringai Festival, Manly NSW
2005 International Women’s Film Festival Israel
2004 WOW Festival, Winner Best Short Film

Cast and Crew

Ricco Japaljarri Martin
Maudie Nelson
Charmaine Nelson
Rochelle Dickenson
Delena Dickenson

Writer/Director/Camera - Beck Cole
Sound recordist - Vance Glynn
Editor - Karen Johnson
Assistant editor/Production Co-ordinator- Dena Curtis
Additional Camera - Warwick Thornton
Music composed by - Cliff Bradley
Titles design - Ben Foley
Sound Post - Mike Gissing
Production Manager - Lisa Stefanoff
Producers - Citt Williams and Beck Cole


Thank-you to the Hidden Valley Community, Yipirinya Primary School, Alice Springs Town Pool, Alice Springs Public Library, Sadadeen Supermarket, Tangentyere Council, Owen Cole, Cilla Collins, David Jowsey, Greer Simpkin, Peter Bartlett, Peta Lee Manolos and everyone involved.

Thanks to Warwick Thornton and Luka May Glynn-Cole

Special thanks to Ricco and Maudie

Filmed on Arrernte Country in Central Australia

Produced with the assistance of the Indigenous Branch of the Australian Film Commission and Imparja Television

Developed and Produced in association with the Australian Broadcasting Commission.