The drama surrounding the dismissal of Mr. Gough Whitlam as the Labor Prime Minister of Australia - on 11 November, 1975 - by the then Governor-General of Australia, Sir John Kerr - and the... See full summary »
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1983  
3 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Max Phipps ...
 Gough Whitlam (3 episodes, 1983)
John Stanton ...
 Malcolm Fraser (3 episodes, 1983)
...
 Rex Connor (3 episodes, 1983)
...
 Sir John Kerr (3 episodes, 1983)
Peter Sumner ...
 Bill Hayden (3 episodes, 1983)
...
 Lady Kerr (3 episodes, 1983)
Ed Devereaux ...
 Phillip Lynch (3 episodes, 1983)
Tom Oliver ...
 Reg Withers (3 episodes, 1983)
Stuart Littlemore ...
 TV Anchorman (3 episodes, 1983)
Ruth Cracknell ...
 Margaret Whitlam (3 episodes, 1983)
Robin Bowering ...
 Jim Killen (3 episodes, 1983)
David Downer ...
 Tony Staley (3 episodes, 1983)
Sean Scully ...
 Doug Anthony (3 episodes, 1983)
John Hargreaves ...
 Dr. Jim Cairns (2 episodes, 1983)
Harry Weiss ...
 Tirath Khemlani (2 episodes, 1983)
George Ogilvie ...
 Senator Jim McClelland (2 episodes, 1983)
Nancye Hayes ...
 Connor's Secretary (2 episodes, 1983)
Ken Wayne ...
 Liberal Senator (2 episodes, 1983)
John Allen ...
 John Menadue (2 episodes, 1983)
Alan Becher ...
 Ian Viner (2 episodes, 1983)
Tim Burns ...
 David Smith (2 episodes, 1983)
Arthur Dignam ...
 Eric Robinson (2 episodes, 1983)
Tim Elliott ...
 Sir Fredrick Wheeler (2 episodes, 1983)
Ray Marshall ...
 Senator Ken Wriedt - ALP Senate Leader (2 episodes, 1983)
Martin Harris ...
 Kep Enderby (2 episodes, 1983)
Dennis Miller ...
 Gordon Scholes - The Second Speaker (2 episodes, 1983)
Ruth Osborne
(2 episodes, 1983)
Beverley Phillips
(2 episodes, 1983)
Kate Reid
(2 episodes, 1983)
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Storyline

The drama surrounding the dismissal of Mr. Gough Whitlam as the Labor Prime Minister of Australia - on 11 November, 1975 - by the then Governor-General of Australia, Sir John Kerr - and the subsequent installation, in Parliament, of the Liberal 'caretaker government' and Mr. Malcolm Fraser as the 'caretaker' Prime Minister. Written by David McAnally <D.McAnally@uq.net.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History

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Release Date:

6 March 1983 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

5.11.75  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(3 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Quotes

Gough Whitlam: [referring to Opposition Leader Billy Snedden] Before the Leader of the Opposition can talk about leadership, let him serve his apprenticeship. Let him do some on-the-job training. Better still, let him do some adult re-training.
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User Reviews

 
Very Detailed but Understandable Account of Events
30 August 2009 | by (London, Ontario) – See all my reviews

As a Canadian, I didn't know very much about the Whitlam dismissal. I had read the Wikipedia page about those events, but that was about it. Earlier this year, when Canada went through a potential constitutional crisis (it fizzled out, thankfully) that might have led to intervention by our Governor-General, the Whitlam dismissal was mentioned in the press. In an effort to learn more, I ordered the DVD of this mini-series through EBay.

I was greatly impressed by how interesting the account was. As dramatic as events were, this could have been a very boring political drama. However, it was a pretty suspenseful mini-series. I was also impressed by how understandable it was, despite my lack of familiarity with Australian politics. It didn't take long to figure out who everyone was, and what their roles were.

Having said that, it is not an entirely impartial account. Malcolm Fraser is certainly portrayed as a rather Machiavellian figure, who lets no person or thing get in the way of his quest to be Prime Minister. Gough Whitlam is portrayed in a more noble, almost saintly, light. However, the actor portraying Whitlam channels the nobility in such a way that it comes across more as pomposity. I thought that Sir John Kerr was portrayed in a fairly sympathetic manner.

I must warn people that the DVD is of very poor quality. I understand that it was made for television in the early 80s, but it would appear that no effort was made to restore the picture quality or sound quality. It was very disappointing that no extras were added either. A documentary, or even some interviews with the historical figures, would have enhanced the experience, but there is nothing.

I highly recommend this mini-series for anyone interested in the real-life events.


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