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The Chain Reaction (1980)

5.4
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Ratings: 5.4/10 from 431 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 11 critic

An earthquake in rural Australia causes a dangerous leak at WALDO, a nuclear waste storage facility. Heinrich Schmidt, an engineer badly hurt in the accident, knows that the leak will ... See full summary »

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Title: The Chain Reaction (1980)

The Chain Reaction (1980) on IMDb 5.4/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Larry
Arna-Maria Winchester ...
Carmel
Ross Thompson ...
Heinrich
Ralph Cotterill ...
Gray
...
Eagle
Lorna Lesley ...
Gloria
Richard Moir ...
Jr. Const. Pigott
Patrick Ward ...
Oates
Laurie Moran ...
Police Sgt. McSweeney
Michael Long ...
Doctor
Bill McCluskey ...
Ralph
Margo Lloyd ...
Molly
Tim Burns ...
Survey driver
Arthur Sherman ...
Byron Langley
Barry Donnelly ...
Gateman
Edit

Storyline

An earthquake in rural Australia causes a dangerous leak at WALDO, a nuclear waste storage facility. Heinrich Schmidt, an engineer badly hurt in the accident, knows that the leak will poison the groundwater for hundreds of miles around, and wants to warn the public. His boss, however, is only interested in protecting himself, and believes the accident should be covered up, even at the expense of thousands of lives. Heinrich escapes from the facility, but is too badly injured to get very far. Lost in the woods and suffering from amnesia, he is rescued by Larry, an auto mechanic on vacation with his wife, Carmel. As Heinrich tries to piece together his memories of what happened, his boss' thugs are quickly closing in on the trio. Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Mad Max meets The China Syndrome See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 September 1980 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

The Chain Reaction  »

Box Office

Budget:

AUD 450,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film had a number of production problems including those relating to accidents, weather and night filming. The complexity and ambitiousness of the project put a high degree of strain on the shooting schedule. The shoot overran by about a week and over budget by about $150,000. See more »

Goofs

When Larry runs over a Pluto's Man, the man is seen rolling off the windscreen into the back trailer of the Ute, but when the camera cuts to the inside of the Ute, the camera has a clear view of the back of the Ute, and no one is there, but in the next shot when he reaches for Carmel, he is on the roof of the Ute. It's not possible to get on top of the Ute from the trailer in that span of time, especially at the high speeds that Larry was traveling throughout the car chase. See more »

Quotes

Eagle: Listen, WALDO isn't exactly human. WALDO is a multinational corporation, working the ass-end of the nuclear cycle. Professor Heinrich and I once conjected the possibility of a high-level nuclear excursion, thats a link! Now, last night, he reversed charged a call from here, and he was cut-off before I could get the details, but it was quite obvious that he was in BIG TROUBLE!
Larry: Do me a favor mate, I've got enough trouble of my own!
Eagle: [Points outside to plane flying over] Thats trouble laddy! And ...
See more »

Connections

Featured in Ozploitation Trailer Explosion (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Great car stunts, just needed more of them
27 November 2010 | by (Williamsburg, VA) – See all my reviews

A nuclear plant employee is accidentally showered in radioactive waste and his company wants to hush up the fact the water supply has been contaminated. He escapes and quickly falls under the care of race car driver Larry (Steve Bisley) and his wife Carmel (Arna-Maria Winchester) at their vacation home. Since they are corporate guys, the baddies will stop at nothing to silence the escapee and anyone who helps him. It is THE CHINA SYNDROME with car chases! This one is pretty decent but suffers from a sluggish pace at times and making a straight-forward plot convoluted. There are some nice character touches (the deaf hit-man; Hugh Keays-Byrne's eccentric anti-nuke guy). MAD MAX's George Miller was originally supposed to direct, but didn't. He did do the work on the car chases (uncredited), which are really good but the film could have used more of them. Ian Barry directed and has a good eye and stages some nice shocks. Wish it was more even though. Some guy named Mel Gibson has a two-second cameo.


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