This is what happens when your car breaks down on a Sunday morning and you have nothing else to do…
Wake in Fright
Have a drink, mate? Have a fight, mate? Have some dust and sweat, mate? There's nothing else out here.
Wake in Fright is the story of John Grant, a bonded teacher who arrives in the rough outback mining town of Bundanyabba planning to stay overnight before catching the plane to Sydney, but as one night stretches into several he plunges headlong into his own destruction.
Recommended to me on my Make me watch your favourite list.
Sweltering and oppressive, Wake in Fright is a man's disconcerting descent into his own personal hell.
Kotcheff's film first slowly peels only to end up clawing at its protagonist's humanity, exposing an animalistic nerve that is both confronting and harrowing. Acted superbly across the board and shot with a colour palette that only adds to the scorching desert heat, Wake in Fright captures life in the Australian outback in, what I can only assume, a painfully realistic way.
This film is astonishing. It takes the simplest of premises, a man stuck in a place trying to get away, and turns it into an inevitable, slow, spiralling plunge into the…
All my life I’ve held the misbelief that Canadians were champion drinkers. Not even close. Earlier this year seeing the Russian drama Leviathan shattered my belief, but I comforted myself saying ‘that was vodka’. When it comes to beer, we’re still tops. Apparently not. Those outback Aussies would clean our clocks. ‘Here, drink that up so I can buy you another!’
Wake in Fright is a lucid waking nightmare. It claws at you and pulls you down, deeper and deeper. Resist as you might, its simple nature and utterly base morality and behavior may appear beneath you, causing you to underestimate its charm and power, and this is exactly where the nightmare…
May you dream of the Devil and wake in fright. - AN OLD CURSE
Part 1 of the 30 Countries project.
For the purposes of this project this movie is classed as at least partially being of Australian origin as per its listing on imdb.
“In the remote towns of the west there are few of the amenities of civilization; there is no sewerage, there are no hospitals, rarely a doctor; the food is dreary and flavourless from long carrying, the water is bad; electricity is for the few who can afford their own plant, roads are mostly non-existent; there are no theatres, no picture shows and few dance halls; and the people are saved from stark insanity by the…
The most nihilistic film of all time. Worse than hell; there is nothing. You can drink, you can kill and you can try to escape but you'll still just end up in a void of your own human awfulness.
XMZZ never comes to Yabba. Yabba circles XMZZ like light circling a black hole, forever approaching, never arriving. Yabba is what happens when a single office XMZZ party begins but is never allowed to finish. Boxing Day is advertised in other places far away as some potentially reachable location past the far shores of XMZZ. I am already having nightmares about an immobile robotically chortling Santa in a sleigh made of crumpled beer cans and rifles being dragged through the dirt by dismembered kangaroo corpses. And I haven't gone to sleep yet. Never before have I wanted a kangaroo to wrest a knife away from a human being more than during the watching of 'Wake In Fright'. And what is…
An Outback exploration of just how far we are and how much it takes to get us over the line between regular dignified folk and the alternative. Ted Kotcheff's gem baths you in the weird, covers you in grime, bastes you in Donald Pleasance man-stink then rains testosterone and kangaroos on you. It also involves a ton of beer. When it's over, you will either be contemplating what circumstances would cause YOU to crossover, or you will just feel dirty and violated. I love that Kotcheff gave this, First Blood AND Weekend at Bernie's to me. He is like my favorite uncle.
An Aussie Groundhog Day Thriller.
Not for Eric's wife. U-Turn done well.
I was expecting a horror film, so I had to adjust my expectations once it became clear that was not what I would be getting. The film I got was extremely compelling and a bit obscure. I think it will take multiple viewings to unpack.
Cf. Straw Dogs
"A vanity spawned by fear."
The downward spiral. A gut-wrenching, raw tumble into the harrowing depths of personal hell. Few stories are as ruthlessly honest as John Grant's, and his absurd descent into vice and annihilation is confronting and unforgettable. Distressing, completely insane and unsettlingly real - this is one of the most genuine Australian films ever made.
Hands down the greatest Australian film ever made, in my opinion. I may be somewhat biased, having grown up in Broken Hill (the real life location of Bundanyabba) in the years immediately following Wake In Fright's release, but Ted Kotcheff managed to weave what I experienced as an oppressive, frightening and mysterious world into a diamond-sharp primal myth.
A much needed rewatch, I noticed the added detail that John grant makes the bartender in tiboonda at the start of the film drink with him, some satisfyingly inward foreshadowing.
Beer mate?... no not with stupid fuckers!!!
Film 2/30 of Scavenger Hunt #14
Task #26: An Australian horror film
A deeply unsettling film about a teacher who finds himself stuck in a small outback town which begins to represent his own personal hell, and maybe a reflection of his own nature. The greatest hell of all.
Many of us like to think of ourselves as decent, civilized people. But we can all reflect back on moments where it became terrifyingly clear how close we are to the animals.
And on another level, don't we all get stuck in shit-hole small towns, drinking and carrying on with our dumb friends as our dreams of escape slowly wash away with time?????
I also think the opening scenes where…
High-rated movies with very few views. Suggestions are welcome.