7.7/10
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Walkabout (1971)

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Two young siblings are stranded in the Australian Outback and are forced to cope on their own. They meet an Australian boy on "walkabout": a ritual separation from his tribe.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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A Sydney lawyer defends five Aborigines in a ritualized taboo murder and in the process learns disturbing things about himself and premonitions.

Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Richard Chamberlain, Olivia Hamnett, David Gulpilil
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Girl
...
White Boy (as Lucien John)
...
Black Boy (as David Gumpilil)
...
Father
Robert McDarra ...
Man (as Robert McDara)
Peter Carver ...
No Hoper (as Pete Carver)
John Illingsworth ...
Husband
Hilary Bamberger ...
Woman
Barry Donnelly ...
Australian Scientist
Noeline Brown ...
German Scientist (as Noelene Brown)
Carlo Manchini ...
Italian Scientist
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Storyline

A privileged British family consisting of a mother, a geologist father and an adolescent daughter and son, live in Sydney, Australia. Out of circumstance, the siblings, not knowing exactly where they are, get stranded in the Outback by themselves while on a picnic. They only have with them the clothes on their backs - their school uniforms - some meagre rations of nonperishable food, a battery-powered transistor radio, the son's satchel primarily containing his toys, and a small piece of cloth they used as their picnic drop-cloth. While they walk through the Outback, sometimes looking as though near death, they come across an Australian boy who is on his walkabout, a rite of passage into manhood where he spends months on end on his own living off the land. Their largest problem is not being able to verbally communicate. The boy does help them to survive, but doesn't understand their need to return to civilization, which may or may not happen based on what the Australian boy ends up ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Nicolas Roeg's Uncut Directorial Masterpiece See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

1 July 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Longa Caminhada  »

Box Office

Budget:

AUD 1,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1997 reissue) | (original)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastman Colour)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jenny Agutter was embarrassed when doing the scene of her swimming naked in the lake, so as many as possible of the crew were sent away. When shooting was done they returned, stripped naked, and went for a swim. See more »

Goofs

Jenny's stockings variously disappear and reappear with no continuity. It seems earlier scenes with her wearing them are intermingled with later scenes where she doesn't wear them. See more »

Quotes

The Girl: Please try. It's silly to give in now. It can't be much further.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening caption: In Australia, when an Aborigine man-child reaches sixteen, he is sent out into the land. For months he must live from it. Sleep on it. Eat of its fruit and flesh. Stay alive. Even if it means killing his fellow creatures. The Aborigines call it the WALKABOUT. This is the story of a "WALKABOUT". See more »

Connections

Referenced in Following the Rabbit-Proof Fence (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Gasoline Alley
By Rod Stewart
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User Reviews

 
Another opinion
11 July 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

As far as comments about Roeg's going overboard with his message of "nature/aborigine good, industrialisation/white men bad," this is a simplistic way of reading it. First of all, every director has his or her own style, and Roeg started as a cinematographer--his movies tend to contain long, meditative (or, boring, depending on one's view) visual passages. Roeg floods the screen with cascades of images, by turns repetitive and contrasting, much as a poet uses the sounds and rhythms of words, as well as their semantic content, to create "meaning" in the context of the poem.

To expect Roeg not to dwell on images is to expect Tolstoy not to go off on 20-page rants about how the lack of Napoleon would necessitate another to fill his historical role. One overlooks idiosyncracies in one's friends.

I found the movie much more powerful than I expected. My only disappointment with the Criterion DVD release is with the commentaries. I would love to have heard more about the story, and it would have been nice to have heard from David Gulpilil, whose role as the aborigine was a watershed in Australian cinema, as noted in the IMDb article on his career.


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