IMDb > Wake in Fright (1971)
Wake in Fright
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Wake in Fright (1971) More at IMDbPro »

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Wake in Fright -- Directed by Ted Kotcheff (Rambo - First Blood, North Dallas Forty), the film tells the story of a British schoolteacher's descent into personal demoralization at the hands of drunken, deranged derelicts while stranded in a small town in outback Australia.
Wake in Fright -- 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 his one night stretches to five and he plunges headlong toward his own destruction
Wake in Fright -- 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.
Wake in Fright -- Trailer for Wake in Fright


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7.8/10   4,612 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Down 1% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Evan Jones (screenplay)
Kenneth Cook (based on the novel by)
View company contact information for Wake in Fright on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
21 July 1971 (France) See more »
Have a drink, mate? Have a fight, mate? Have some dust and sweat, mate? There's nothing else out here.
After a bad gambling bet, a schoolteacher is marooned in a town full of crazy, drunk, violent men who threaten to make him just as crazy, drunk, and violent. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 nomination See more »
(186 articles)
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User Reviews:
Disturbing and Magnificent See more (55 total) »


  (in credits order)

Donald Pleasence ... Doc Tydon
Gary Bond ... John Grant
Chips Rafferty ... Jock Crawford
Sylvia Kay ... Janette Hynes

Jack Thompson ... Dick
Peter Whittle ... Joe
Al Thomas ... Tim Hynes

John Meillon ... Charlie
John Armstrong ... Atkins
Slim DeGrey ... Jarvis (as Slim De Grey)
Maggie Dence ... Receptionist
Norm Erskine ... Joe the Cook (as Norman Erskine)
Owen Moase ... 1st Controller
John Dalleen ... 2nd Controller
Buster Fiddess ... Charlie Jones
Tex Foote ... Stubbs
Colin Hughes ... Stockman
Jacko Jackson ... Van Driver
Nancy Knudsen ... Robyn
Dawn Lake ... Joyce
Harry Lawrence ... Higgins
Robert McDarra ... Pig Eyes (as Bob McDarra)
Carlo Manchini ... Poker Player (as Carlo Marchini)
Liam Reynolds ... Miner
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Gordon Piper ... Two Up Player (uncredited)

Directed by
Ted Kotcheff 
Writing credits
Evan Jones (screenplay)

Kenneth Cook (based on the novel by)

Produced by
Howard G. Barnes .... executive producer
Bill Harmon .... executive producer
Maurice Singer .... associate producer (as Maurice A. Singer)
George Willoughby .... producer
Original Music by
John Scott 
Cinematography by
Brian West 
Film Editing by
Anthony Buckley 
Casting by
Jill Dempster 
John Merrick 
Production Design by
Dennis Gentle 
Art Direction by
Dennis Gentle 
Costume Design by
Ron Williams (uncredited)
Makeup Department
Monica Dawkins .... makeup artist
Robert Hynard .... hair stylist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Howard Rubie .... first assistant director
Philip Austin .... third assistant director (uncredited)
Michael Falloon .... third assistant director (uncredited)
Sound Department
John Appleton .... sound recordist
Keith Palmer .... sound editor
Hugh Strain .... sound mixer
Tim Wellburn .... sound editor
Eddy Joseph .... assistant sound editor (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
John R. McLean .... camera operator (as John McLean)
Tony Tegg .... gaffer
Peter Hannan .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Peter Hannan .... cinematographer: second unit (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Ron Williams .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Thom Noble .... post-production coordinator
Other crew
Rita Cavill .... continuity
Vivian Holmes .... production secretary
Lynda Levy .... producer assistant: post-production
John Shaw .... location manager
Fred Hift .... publicist: Great Britain and Europe (uncredited)
Antonio Saillant .... thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Outback" - Ireland (English title) (imdb display title), UK, USA
See more »
114 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:M (2009) | France:-12 | Japan:R15+ (2014) | New Zealand:R16 | Norway:18 | Singapore:M18 | UK:18 | UK:X (original rating) | USA:R

Did You Know?

The film features a graphic hunting sequence during which one kangaroo is killed by a hunting dog, many are shot (with several shown wounded but still alive) and one even appears to be deliberately run over. Significant parts of this section were genuine footage of an actual hunt. A production note at the start of the closing credits suggest that these disturbingly confronting images were kept uncut as a deliberate statement against licensed hunting of kangaroos, the survival of which the note claims was at the time 'seriously threatened'.See more »
Continuity: As Grant leaves the hotel bar in Tiboonda, he takes one last swig of beer - leaving his glass half full. In the next shot, when the camera focuses on the interior of the bar, his glass is now empty.See more »
Dick:[referring to John Grant] What's the matter with him? He'd rather talk to a woman than drink?
Tim Hynes:Schoolteacher.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Australian Movies to the World (1983) (TV)See more »
She'll be coming around the mountainSee more »


Did Doc and John have a homosexual encounter?
Is John supposed to be English or Australian?
Were real kangaroos killed during the making of the film?
See more »
14 out of 18 people found the following review useful.
Disturbing and Magnificent, 19 July 2005
Author: Chris Warrington from United Kingdom

It is this film which tells me more about Australia than any other.

Shown this film by Australian film scholar Cath Ellis i was captivated from start to finish. It is this film which does not flinch from the heart of Australian masculinity. There is no romanticism as with that found in Gallipoli or Newsfront.

We are slowly drawn into the disintegrating world of a hapless teacher who is trapped in the Australian interior. This isn't the Australian dream of the new frontier, this is a vision of Hell.

By the finale you will be swearing (as many Australian students apparently do when confronted with this film) that it cannot be that bad, the rampant hyper masculinity on display is too much and too wantonly violent. Hmmm.

The film is notorious for scenes of a Kangaroo being brutally murdered by a pack of drunken men engaging in an uncontrollably escalating series of dares. It is one of the most damning scenes about the pillage of Australia you could ever see. But like a train wreck you cannot avert your eyes.

On a cheekily upbeat note, look out for Donald Pleasance who seems to be enjoying the whole thing far too much. It looks like they were paying him in beer...

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (55 total) »

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Something similar? axminster7
Is this really about a vision of Hell? ubiquitous_diabolus
awesome flick yoonc
naughty Doc dingduder
Showing at the Library of Congress Diabolik6
109 Minute Version vs. 114 Minute Version drexlermcstyles
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