Razorback (1984)

R  |   |  Horror, Thriller  |  16 November 1984 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.0/10 from 3,526 users  
Reviews: 52 user | 53 critic

A vicious wild boar terrorizes the Australian outback. The first victim is a small child who is killed. The child's granddad is brought to trial for killing the child but acquitted. The ... See full summary »



0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Road Games (1981)
Adventure | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A truck driver plays a cat-and-mouse game with a mysterious serial killer who uses a young female hitchhiker as bait to lure victims on a desolate Australian highway.

Director: Richard Franklin
Stars: Stacy Keach, Jamie Lee Curtis, Marion Edward
Long Weekend (1978)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

When a suburban couple go camping for the weekend at a remote beach, they discover that nature isn't in an accommodating mood.

Director: Colin Eggleston
Stars: John Hargreaves, Briony Behets, Mike McEwen
Alligator (1980)
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A baby alligator is flushed down a Chicago toilet and survives by eating discarded laboratory rats injected with growth hormones. The small reptile grows gigantic, escapes the city sewers, and goes on a rampage.

Director: Lewis Teague
Stars: Robert Forster, Robin Riker, Michael V. Gazzo
Wolfen (1981)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A New York cop investigates a series of brutal deaths that resemble animal attacks.

Director: Michael Wadleigh
Stars: Albert Finney, Diane Venora, Edward James Olmos
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A battle for survival as hikers encounter a chemically imbalanced forest.

Director: William Girdler
Stars: Christopher George, Leslie Nielsen, Lynda Day George
Escape 2000 (1982)
Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Deviants are held at a rehabilitation fortress until they're set into a deadly game of survival, in the hopes of returning to world society.

Director: Brian Trenchard-Smith
Stars: Steve Railsback, Olivia Hussey, Michael Craig
Patrick (1978)
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A comatose hospital patient harasses and kills though his powers of telekinesis to claim his private nurse as his own.

Director: Richard Franklin
Stars: Susan Penhaligon, Robert Helpmann, Rod Mullinar
Q (1982)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

New York police are bemused by a spate of reports of a giant flying lizard that has been spotted around the rooftops of New York, which they assume to be bogus until the lizard starts to ... See full summary »

Director: Larry Cohen
Stars: David Carradine, Michael Moriarty, Candy Clark
Dark Age (1987)
Adventure | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

In the Australian outback, a park ranger and two local guides set out to track down a giant crocodile that has been killing and eating the local populace. During the hunt, one of the guides... See full summary »

Director: Arch Nicholson
Stars: John Jarratt, Nikki Coghill, Max Phipps
Sci-Fi | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Investigating the mysterious deaths of a number of farm animals, vet Rack Hansen discovers that his town lies in the path of hoards of migrating tarantulas. Before he can take action, the ... See full summary »

Director: John 'Bud' Cardos
Stars: William Shatner, Tiffany Bolling, Woody Strode
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The story of the Australian exploitation genre cinema of 1970s and 80s.

Director: Mark Hartley
Stars: Phillip Adams, Glory Annen, Christine Amor
Dragon Flies (1975)
Action | Drama | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Hong Kong Inspector Fang Sing Leng travels to Australia to extradite a drug dealer. When the hood is assassinated on his way to court, everyone suspects Jack Wilton, a crime lord who the local police haven't been able to pick up.

Directors: Brian Trenchard-Smith, Yu Wang
Stars: Yu Wang, George Lazenby, Hugh Keays-Byrne


Cast overview, first billed only:
Carl Winters
Arkie Whiteley ...
Sarah Cameron
Bill Kerr ...
Jake Cullen
Benny Baker
David Argue ...
Dicko Baker
Beth Winters
Don Smith ...
Mervyn Drake ...
Redmond Phillips ...
Alan Becher ...
Counsel (as Alan Beecher)
Peter Schwarz ...
Lawyer (as Peter Schwartz)
Beth Child ...
Louise Cullen
Rick Kennedy ...


A vicious wild boar terrorizes the Australian outback. The first victim is a small child who is killed. The child's granddad is brought to trial for killing the child but acquitted. The next victim is an American TV-journalist. Her husband Carl gets there and starts to search for the truth. The local inhabitants won't really help him, but he is joined by a hunter and a female farmer to find the beast. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Nine hundred pounds of marauding tusk and muscle! See more »


Horror | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

16 November 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dödens käftar  »

Box Office


AUD 5,500,000 (estimated)


$150,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A full-sized, fully animatronic model razorback was built at a cost of $250,000 and is seen for only one second. See more »


[first lines]
Jake Cullen: [to Scotty] Come on, off to bed. There, there, Scotty. Now, now, now, boy, it's alright.
See more »


Referenced in 20 to 1: 80's Good, Bad & Ugly (2010) See more »


New Moon on Monday
Written and Performed by Duran Duran
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Under-appreciated 80s Classic
2 May 2006 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Razorback is one of the best Australian horror/action movies ever made. The direction is dazzling, the cinematography is truly remarkable and the cast is brimming with quality actors. Mysteriously, no one seems to care.

There is no denying that Razorback's basic plot premise is pretty ridiculous. In short, a giant boar (a Razorback) goes on a killing spree in a small outback town. This is about as unlikely as a giant shark terrorising swimmers ("Jaws") or a wet Japanese woman climbing out of a television set ("The Ring"). My point is that even the most ludicrous storyline can be overcome by excellent film-making and this is certainly the case with Razorback.

Razorback was the film that launched Russell Mulcahy's film career after making a name for himself directing music video clips for AC/DC, Queen and Duran Duran. Razorback reflects the same sensibilities that Mulcahy brought to his best video clips: frenetic pacing, flashy camera angles and stylish visuals. These qualities are almost disorientating during the film's action and horror sequences, making them all the more suspenseful and eerie.

Mulcahy's dizzying direction combines brilliantly with Dean Semler's superb cinematography. Semler seems to thrive on barren landscapes and he captures the harsh beauty of the Australian outback magnificently. The scene with the wooden horse bobbing up and down on the salt flat is mesmerising, as is the entire sequence of Carl hallucinating in the desert. Put simply, Razorback is one of the most beautiful horror films not made by an Italian giallo master.

The cast is equally accomplished, offering a smorgasbord of excellent Australian character actors. Judy Morris ("Phar Lap") does well as Beth, not being hampered too greatly by an American accent. Bill Kerr ("Gallipoli") seems to have appeared in every second Australian movie. He has one of his best roles as Jake. Chris Haywood ("Muriel's Wedding") is also memorable as the ultra vile Benny. American import, Gregory Harrison, does respectably as Carl and the late Arkie Whiteley is sweet as Sarah, a woman who inexplicably monitors boar movements in the middle of nowhere.

The special effects still hold up reasonably well and the creature effects for the Razorback are great. I love the close-up of its eye in the finale. There is not much gore, but what the film lacks in blood, it more than makes up for with constant action. Razorback begins with an action sequence and simply never lets up. There are car chases, kangaroo shootings, beatings, home demolitions and that just covers the first half of the film. Razorback is not a particularly scary film, but it compensates for this with eerie atmospherics and relentless tension.

In addition to the fine film-making, I also enjoy Razorback for its political incorrectness. The outback characters are arch stereotypes and just about every animal in town comes to a violent end. Benny and Dicko even run over Jake's dog for fun, which would be unimaginable in a film made today. Furthermore, the irony of an animal rights activist being eaten by a giant boar was not lost on me.

Razorback is an excellent genre film that deserves much wider recognition. I wish the Australian film industry would make more films like this. If Russell Mulcahy's upcoming "Resident Evil" instalment does well, he should consider making the long overdue sequel to Razorback.

19 of 20 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
UNCUT?? Black_Stone
Other Aussie Animal Attack Movies? thatyellowbastard69
Animal Cruelty? kaemera
When will this be released in US on DVD? butcherofbakersfield
BIG PIG Kane41
Differences between the DVD versions? The_True_Meller
Discuss Razorback (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: