26 user 22 critic

Goin' Down the Road (1970)

Two friends leave the picturesque yet rural province of Nova Scotia for the nightlife and culture of Toronto. They soon end up wistful and nostalgic about Nova Scotia though after finding out that Toronto isn't as fun as they'd hoped.


Donald Shebib


William Fruet, William Fruet (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Doug McGrath ... Peter
Paul Bradley ... Joey
Jayne Eastwood ... Betty
Cayle Chernin Cayle Chernin ... Selina
Nicole Morin Nicole Morin ... Nicole
Pierre La Roche Pierre La Roche ... Frenchy
Don Steinhouse Don Steinhouse ... Boys At The Plant
Ted Sugar Ted Sugar ... Boys At The Plant
Ron Martin Ron Martin ... Boys At The Plant
Max Jones Max Jones
Dennis Bishop Dennis Bishop ... Loblaw's Clerk
J.R. Zimmerman J.R. Zimmerman ... (as Fred Zimmerman)
Stuart Marwick Stuart Marwick
Mary Black ... Peter's Aunt
Sheila White ... Girl in Record Shop


Story of desolation as two friends travel from Nova Scotia to Toronto in hope of finding a better life. Drifting from job to job: bottling plant, car wash, bowling alley, newspaper delivery, and in between enjoying the night life of the big city. Their previous life is looking better all the time. This movie is a time capsule of Toronto's Yonge Street - record stores (defunct A&A's), bars, and old neighbourhood side streets. Written by Sven Kahrkling <sven@customized.com>

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Did You Know?


Initially, Jayne Eastwood had some misgivings about her brief nude scene. Eastwood was not aware until the day of filming that she had to do one and refused; the very thought of it disgusted her. After coaxing from her co-stars and director Donald Shebib, she agreed, laughing later about her experience: "Then it came to Paul Bradley, who had been razzing me about being such a chicken. I think he left his underwear on or close by, so he could get them back on again. They said 'cut! Okay, Paul, you can put your underwear back on.' And Paul pulled his underwear up so fast it just rolled into a little ball and didn't even cover his private parts!" See more »


Joey Mayle: C'mon Pete.
Peter McGraw: Piss off.
Joey Mayle: It's 6:30.
Peter McGraw: I'm not going to work today.
Joey Mayle: Okay, suit yourself.... Jesus, Petey! Hey, Pete, you can't take no day off! We only been here a month, you think they're not gonna know something's up?
Peter McGraw: I don't give a damn. I can't go horsin' around with broads half the night and drag my butt out of bed a couple'a hours later. All that dumb Selina does is talk. Last night she told me about her mother and her brother's hernia operation and Christ knows what.
Joey Mayle: I thought you were really gettin...
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Goin' Down the Road
Music & lyrics by Bruce Cockburn
Performed by Bruce Cockburn
Played over the opening montage
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User Reviews

Going Down the Road. Social Commentary of the 1960s -70s
17 November 2006 | by gooelf50See all my reviews

I first saw this movie about 25 years ago and was absolutely struck by it's authentic feel. I'm about the same age as the 2 main actors, Doug McGrath and Paul Bradley and although I was born in Ontario, I clearly recall the tremendous influx of 18 - 25 year old men from Newfoundland and Nova Scotia during the 60s and 70s. I worked with several of them and as far as they were concerned, Ontario was the promised land. When they arrived, they were invariably stunned by the promise of it all. High wages, new cars, nice clothes, bright lights, and parties. Everything a boy from the pastoral East coast of Canada dreams of. They loved it all and were about the most friendly people you could ever hope to meet. They worked hard and loved to party.

At times, it was like there was a revolving door between Ontario and the Maritimes. Some of these young men were as steady as rocks and were destined to stay, marry, have children and live out their lives in Ontario. Others were impatient and quickly grew disillusioned. They'd simply pack up and move further West to the next new promised land, British Columbia. Still others came to Ontario with dreams of wealth and standing that they felt they could never attain in the Maritimes. When the dream failed to materialize, they returned to their East Coast homes, disappointed but happy that they gave it a try.

In retrospect, it was like I was caught in the center of a huge social experiment. The wave of young men from the maritimes came unexpectedly in the early 60s and and disappeared just as quickly in the early 70s. It was a period of global readjustment and personal introspection. People wanted to see if there was something more and went out to find it.

When I first happened upon this movie, I thought I was watching a documentary. It has the look and feel of a documentary and this effect is reinforced by the actors who deliver their lines in a manner that seems unrehearsed. The movie is a totally and completely accurate portrayal of the fate that met many young male adventurers from the maritimes.

This is a good movie. It shows up every few months in the wee hours of the morning. The next time you see the title, turn it on a prepare for an interesting trek through the social and cultural landscape of the 1960s.

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Release Date:

3 February 1972 (Hungary) See more »

Also Known As:

Goin' Down the Road See more »

Filming Locations:

Canada See more »


Box Office


CAD87,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Evdon Films See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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