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The Empty Beach (1985)

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A down-on-his-luck P.I. is hired by a beautiful woman to find her missing husband who disappeared after receiving some tapes.



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Title: The Empty Beach (1985)

The Empty Beach (1985) on IMDb 5.8/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Cliff Hardy
Anna Maria Monticelli ...
Anne Winter
John Wood ...
Belinda Giblin ...
Marion SInger
Peter Collingwood ...
Fred Ward
Kerry Mack ...
Joss McWilliam ...
Sally Cooper ...
Sandy Modesto
Brian Henneberry
Rhys McConnochie ...
Garth Green
Steve Rackman ...
Robert Alexander ...
Bob Barrett ...
Christopher Lewis ...


A down-on-his-luck P.I. is hired by a beautiful woman to find her missing husband who disappeared after receiving some tapes.

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Cliff Hardy - One Man Against Sydney's Underworld




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Release Date:

12 September 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Empty Beach  »

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Source novelist Peter Corris has said of this movie in 'The Newtown Review of Books': "Producers Tim Read and John Edwards bought an option with the same idea as Stephen Wallace - cast Bryan Brown as Cliff Hardy. It seemed a perfect fit. I was contracted to write a script with the producers having an opt-out clause if unsatisfied. I wrote a script which they deemed 'too soft'; I wrote another which they said was 'too hard'. 'Sandra Levy' was then brought in and we wrote a script together. John Edwards said, 'Peter, this is almost there!'. The next I heard, they'd exercised the clause and brought in a new scriptwriter. This was Keith Dewhurst who'd written scripts for the British TV series Z Cars (1962). Good choice, I thought and went overseas, adopting the Hemingway philosophy - take the money and run. The film, in my view, was a mess, although critic David Stratton in his book 'The Avocado Plantation' differs. I believe the script missed the point of the book. Bryan Brown was good, perhaps too good. I heard later that some of the cast were so overawed by him they gave lame performances. The director, Chris Thomson, and Brown were said to have been at odds. The female lead, supposed to be whippet-thin and feisty, was so when cast but was pregnant by the time of shooting and wore enveloping garments". See more »

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User Reviews

Film Noir Down Under
30 April 2000 | by (Dewsbury, England) – See all my reviews

A curiosity - a bit like the Big Sleep transposed to 1980s Sydney. Bryan Brown is Cliff Hardy - an Aussie Sam Spade - uncovering corruption and general nastiness.

Brown, sometimes accused of woodeness, is personable enough as the down-at-heel investigator.

The plot takes our hero through the inherent humiliations of the genre and leads to a creepily disquieting finale.

Interesting principally in the way it presents a rather nasty counterpoint to the usual sun 'n' fun vision of Sydney.

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