6.5/10
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14 user 19 critic

Sleeping Dogs (1977)

Not Rated | | Action, Drama, Thriller | 13 July 1978 (Australia)
A New Zealand man recently estranged from his family gets unwittingly caught up in a revolution.

Director:

Roger Donaldson

Writers:

Christian K. Stead (novel) (as Karl Stead), Ian Mune (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sam Neill ... Smith
Nevan Rowe ... Gloria
Ian Mune ... Bullen
Warren Oates ... Col. Willoughby
Ian Watkin Ian Watkin ... Dudley
Clyde Scott Clyde Scott ... Jesperson
Donna Akersten Donna Akersten ... Mary
William Johnson William Johnson ... Cousins (as Bill Johnson)
Don Selwyn Don Selwyn ... Taupiri
Davina Whitehouse ... Elsie
Melissa Donaldson Melissa Donaldson ... Melissa
Dougal Stevenson Dougal Stevenson ... News Reader
Bernard Kearns Bernard Kearns ... Prime Minister
Raf Irving Raf Irving ... Reporter
Tommy Tinirau Tommy Tinirau ... Old Maori Man
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Storyline

Recluse Smith (Sam Neill) is drawn into a revolutionary struggle between leftist guerillas and the New Zealand government. Implicated in a murder and framed as a revolutionary conspirator, Smith tries to avoid violence while caught between warring sides. Written by Mike Welsch <m.welsch@az05p.bull.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

New Zealand A Police State - Could It Happen Here?

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

New Zealand

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 July 1978 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Coup d'État See more »

Filming Locations:

New Zealand

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Box Office

Budget:

NZD 450,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Warren Oates was paid $5000 for his appearance as Colonel Willoughby. Director Roger Donaldson had wanted to cast Jack Nicholson, but the latter's agent turned down the role when informed of the film's low budget. See more »

Goofs

After Bullen crashes the red car, the front left headlight is alternately damaged/undamaged in subsequent shots. See more »

Quotes

Smith: [after discovering how he was framed as a terrorist] You bastards, you bastards.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Cowboys of Culture (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Thrill Me Once Again
Mark Williams
Courtesy of EMI New Zealand
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Another favorite of mine!
26 May 2011 | by crystalartSee all my reviews

Today I finally got a DVD of "Sleeping Dogs" and got to watch it in a wide-screen version for the first time.

As a big fan of Warren Oates, I was first interested in this film because of his character.

His film "Dillinger" is frequently mentioned, and I also recall his excellent work in "Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia", "Black Thunder" and "Badlands".

In "Sleeping Dogs", it's impossible to ignore Sam Neill as he struggles to survive forces outside his control.

I don't know if it's his first film or not, however it's the first one I recall ever seeing him.

Coincidentally, I'm also watching the new DVD release of "Max Headroom", and it's hard to keep the two films from intermixing.

Repressive governments, random violence, all the things that make films like both of these fun to watch again and again.

In this genre, I would also add "Brazil".

"1984" goes without saying.


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