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Summer City (1977)
A good, low budget character study of 1960's era Australian youth
With all due respect to the previous reviewer, Mel Gibson is not the star of this 1977 Australian drama, sometimes known as "Coast of Terror." He is, however, very good in his film debut as Scollop, one of four young men on a weekend jaunt set sometime during the early 60's, judging by all the long surfboards and rock music of the era. The real stars are John Jarrat as Sandy, a quiet, introspective young man who is shortly to be married, and Steve Bisley as Boo, whose only focus in life seems to be having a good time, including a brief fling with Sandy's intended. It is the contrast of these two characters and the events that lead to the violent, tragic climax that make the film worth a view.
This is a very low budget film that suffers quite a bit from poor sound recording and inconsistent editing. The poor sound, coupled with very thick Australian accents will prompt American viewers to ask "What did he say?" throughout the film. On the plus side, the acting is very good for a low budget film and the Australian locales really add authenticity.
In addition to Gibson, this was also Bisley's film debut. They would re-team for George Miller's first "Mad Max" film as fellow police officers. In the United States, their Australian accents were dubbed into "American."