Sunstruck (1972) Poster

(1972)

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A teacher's rude awakening in outback New South Wales.
uds311 November 2001
Well-loved little film that has stood the test of time. Rare dramatic performance from ex-goon, the late Harry Secombe. Here he plays a Welsh schoolteacher who has long dreamed of a move to Australia, where minimal research has led him to believe that sun, surf and girls are on tap! On his arrival at hicksville, the one-horse town of Kookaburra Springs in the blazing outback and where he has been commissioned to run the local school there, reality and fantasy clash head on.

Best described as a fish-out-of-water comedy, the film plays it for laughs, pathos, romance and light drama. Absolutely nothing to offend anyone. Filmed in and around the Parkes area (THE DISH!!) the cast here is uniformly good and lends Secombe great support.

Scripted by Stan Mars, at no stage does the film lag. True it is a little dated, but what would you expect just on thirty years later? Neat music score from Brian West....oh yeah, plenty of sun too!!!
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9/10
Last big screen outing for Sir Harry
pete-rogers-email16 June 2009
A real gem of a movie starring Sir Harry Secombe as Stanley Evans, a Welsh choir master emigrating to Australia to escape his past in Wales to teach kids in the Australian outback. In real life Secombe was himself a Welsh-born tenor, and his dual talent for music and comedy is perfectly suited to this role. It's a shame it was to be the former Goon's final movie, besides later television roles in the UK. Ironically, Secombe concentrated on his singing and television presenting career later in his career and didn't exploit his huge comedy potential for the last few decades of his life. For this reason, "Sunstruck" is a sad reminder of what could have been.
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baked outback antics from Goon guy
ptb-86 February 2005
A very popular family comedy of 1972 sees The "They're A Weird Mob" formula apply again with pretty good results. Primarily a farce about tubby British schoolteacher Harry Secombe immigrating to Oz for Sun and fun but being marooned in the blazing outback instead, it also may have been a positive local conservative establishment response to the bitter and cruel Ted Kotcheff masterpiece OUTBACK or maybe the superb but bleak Nicholas Roeg drama WALKABOUT each produced in the 2 years before SUNSTRUCK. The poster for SUNSTRUCK had the hilarious shot of Secombe in his swimming briefs, on a beach also wearing a graduation cape and mortar board toasting his own delight at 'being in Australia'. The film is very funny and was a big hit for a month or so in 1972 with school holiday audiences. Also a charming and rewarding opportunity to see ex goon Harry in a showcase all to his wonderful self.
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10/10
Bit part member
leslie-sharpe17 October 2006
As a member of the Choir from Wales who sang on the film in Welsh and Australian I would like to say how naturally funny Harry was. He kept everyone laughing and was a pleasure to be with. The film was a family film which did not get the coverage it deserved outside Australia. The fact that part of the film was filmed in a school in Wales was not included in many summaries is an oversight. However, the concept was sound and reflected the fact that many Welsh people became teachers to escape the Valleys. These welsh teachers travelled throughout the world and carried the love of music outside the welsh valleys. The Humour of Harry and the goons is timeless and builds upon the English pun and cleverness with language. Harry and the goons explored the use of many bizarre characters but unusually in this film he played a straight part which showed he was a very capable actor as well.
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6/10
The 43 Year Old Maggie Fitzgibbon
richardchatten13 September 2020
Rangy denim-wearing blonde female lead Maggie Fitzgibbon (who recently died aged 91) will be remembered by older Brits as Vivienne Cooper in the sixties TV series 'The Newcomers'.

Here the positions are reversed as it's 'Welsh pom' Harry Secombe who's the stranger in town in yet another film set Down Under that mentions the heat but neither the aborigines nor the enormous spiders.
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5/10
modest comedy
malcolmgsw20 October 2019
This is the last feature film of that much loved actor Harry Secombe.He did tour Australia and was extremely popular there.Hence this film.It is an adequate time filler.
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10/10
A must see Australian Classic
uspats12 August 2006
Being and Australian I can relate to this movie especially as I was educated at a Country School. The Hotel is the center of town and all business, talk and public discussion goes on there, especially back in the 1960's. And so it goes that all business about the town was conducted in the hotel and if you were a "wowser" (you didn't have a beer) you were on the outer. Stanly (the new teacher from england) soon learns about "having a beer", and is subsequently accepted into the community. I would like this movie and its message to be passed on to future generations so lets get into the 21st Century and bring it out on DVD. -U2SPATS
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8/10
Feel.good
marktayloruk28 December 2020
One of.those films that makes you.suspect that life might be worth living.We need a lot more of them especially at times like this! Why did Maggie Fitzgibbon retire so early?
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