7.6/10
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Walkabout (1971)

GP | | Adventure, Drama | 1 July 1971 (USA)
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4:04 | Trailer
Two city-bred siblings are stranded in the Australian Outback, where they learn to survive with the aid of an Aboriginal boy on his "walkabout": a ritual separation from his tribe.

Director:

Nicolas Roeg

Writers:

Edward Bond (screenplay), Donald G. Payne (novel) (as James Vance Marshall)
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Popularity
4,756 ( 858)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jenny Agutter ... Girl
Luc Roeg ... White Boy (as Lucien John)
David Gulpilil ... Black Boy (as David Gumpilil)
John Meillon ... Father
Robert McDarra Robert McDarra ... Man (as Robert McDara)
Peter Carver Peter Carver ... No Hoper (as Pete Carver)
John Illingsworth John Illingsworth ... Husband
Hilary Bamberger Hilary Bamberger ... Woman
Barry Donnelly Barry Donnelly ... Australian Scientist
Noeline Brown Noeline Brown ... German Scientist (as Noelene Brown)
Carlo Manchini Carlo Manchini ... Italian Scientist
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Storyline

A privileged British family consisting of a mother, a geologist father and an adolescent daughter and son, live in Sydney, Australia. Out of circumstance, the siblings, not knowing exactly where they are, get stranded in the Outback by themselves while on a picnic. They only have with them the clothes on their backs - their school uniforms - some meagre rations of nonperishable food, a battery-powered transistor radio, the son's satchel primarily containing his toys, and a small piece of cloth they used as their picnic drop-cloth. While they walk through the Outback, sometimes looking as though near death, they come across an Australian boy who is on his walkabout, a rite of passage into manhood where he spends months on end on his own living off the land. Their largest problem is not being able to verbally communicate. The boy does help them to survive, but doesn't understand their need to return to civilization, which may or may not happen based on what the Australian boy ends up ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Aborgine and the girl 30,000 years apart ...together See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Australia

Language:

English | Aboriginal | Czech | French

Release Date:

1 July 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Walkabout See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

AUD1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1997 reissue) | (original)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastman Colour)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Towards the beginning, when the girls are doing the breathing exercise in the classroom scene in unison, it is a warm-up exercise for pronouncing consonants and vowels. See more »

Goofs

The girl asks to be taken to the city of Adelaide, the children's destination in the novel. However, the city shown at the start and end of the film is clearly Sydney, which is several thousand kilometers (and two states) away from Adelaide. See more »

Quotes

The Girl: I'm not turning back. We've got to get on. It's late! I'm going now. Please! Please try. It can't be much further. It's silly to give in now. It's getting late! We've got to go. We can't waste time!
See more »

Crazy Credits

David Gulpilil is incorrectly spelled in the opening credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

A version screened by the BBC in the early 80s featured some Easy-Rider style scene transitions (rapid cuts back and forth) not found in the other cuts. See more »

Connections

Featured in Gulpilil: Man of Two Worlds (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

Los Angeles
By Warren Marley
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Another opinion
11 July 2005 | by jdwilliams-2See all my reviews

As far as comments about Roeg's going overboard with his message of "nature/aborigine good, industrialisation/white men bad," this is a simplistic way of reading it. First of all, every director has his or her own style, and Roeg started as a cinematographer--his movies tend to contain long, meditative (or, boring, depending on one's view) visual passages. Roeg floods the screen with cascades of images, by turns repetitive and contrasting, much as a poet uses the sounds and rhythms of words, as well as their semantic content, to create "meaning" in the context of the poem.

To expect Roeg not to dwell on images is to expect Tolstoy not to go off on 20-page rants about how the lack of Napoleon would necessitate another to fill his historical role. One overlooks idiosyncracies in one's friends.

I found the movie much more powerful than I expected. My only disappointment with the Criterion DVD release is with the commentaries. I would love to have heard more about the story, and it would have been nice to have heard from David Gulpilil, whose role as the aborigine was a watershed in Australian cinema, as noted in the IMDb article on his career.


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