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Massacre Hill (1949)

Eureka Stockade (original title)
Approved | | Drama, History | 26 January 1949 (UK)
In 1854, Australian gold rush miners struggle for their rights against an oppressive government.


Harry Watt


Harry Watt (screenplay), Walter Greenwood (screenplay) | 1 more credit »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Chips Rafferty ... Peter Lalor
Jane Barrett ... Alicia Dunne
Jack Lambert Jack Lambert ... Commissioner Rede
Peter Illing ... Raffaello
Gordon Jackson ... Tom Kennedy
Ralph Truman Ralph Truman ... Gov. Hotham
Sydney Loder Sydney Loder ... Vern
John Fernside John Fernside ... Sly Grog Seller
Grant Taylor ... Sergt. Major Milne
Peter Finch ... Humffray
Kevin Brennan Kevin Brennan ... Black
John Fegan John Fegan ... Hayes
Al Thomas ... Scobie
Ron Whelan Ron Whelan ... Bentley
Dorothy Alison ... Mrs. Bentley (as Perk Allison)


In 1854, Australian gold rush miners struggle for their rights against an oppressive government.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Sweeping drama of Australia's Gold Rush See more »


Drama | History


Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The real Eureka flag was collected by police trooper John King, after the fight at the stockade and was kept in the Ballarat Fine Arts Gallery, before being moved in 2012 to the new Museum of Australian Democracy (MADE) at the Eureka Stockade site. See more »


Despite the apparent carnage set in the film, only 27 deaths (22 miners and 5 soldiers) are officially attributed to the action at the Stockade. In the Victorian Register of Births, Deaths and Marriages, there is a consecutive list of 27 names all registered as having died at Ballarat on December 3rd. However, there may have been wounded miners who escaped and died of wounds and injuries later and whose deaths were never attributed to involvement at the stockade. See more »


Commissioner Rede: Mr Lalor, should there be violence, I can assure you it'll be met with violence.
See more »


Referenced in Neighbours: Episode #1.223 (1986) See more »


Song of the Thrush
Music by George Le Brunn
Lyrics by W. Hastings
See more »

User Reviews

After the gold rush
31 July 2019 | by Prismark10See all my reviews

Eureka Stockade is an ambitious film. It tries to fervour revolutionary sentiments such as those American films that depict the Boston tea party and the fight for American independence.

Under British rule. The Victorian government in 1854 need to raise funds by imposing licence fees on gold miners in Ballarat. It was also imposed to discourage new people coming into the area.

Not only are miners being taxed with these monthly licence fees, they are not treated like equal citizens having to work in terrible conditions.

The story follows three new arrivals Peter Lalor (Chips Rafferty) an engineer by trade and his Italian friend Raffaello Carboni (Peter Illing) who help out young Scotsman Tom Kennedy (Gordon Jackson) they meet. Life is hard for the gold miners and the licence fees keeps on increasing.

Tensions rise between the miners and the police when a hotel owner is acquitted of murder when a miner killed in a brawl.

Lalor tries to keep the peace between the miners and the police. However the Governor is in no mood to meet their demands for better treatment. Lalor finds himself a wanted man after Lalor and the miners arm themselves and make camp at the newly constructed Eureka Stockade. The British army easily overpower them.

The film certainly has a radical intent. The Governor, his cohorts and the soldiers are painted as boo hiss villains. Chips Rafferty seems to play Lalor with the dignity of Abraham Lincoln who he is made up to look like.

Director Harry Watt was on side of the gold miners. He certainly envisioned an epic scope for this film. Unfortunately it is not an involving film, lacking impetus and action with too many two dimensional characters.

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Release Date:

26 January 1949 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Massacre Hill See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Ealing Studios See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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