2 user 6 critic

The Back of Beyond (1954)

A documentary film which follows a mailman as he travels along the Birdsville Track in the Outback.



, (dialogue & narration) | 3 more credits »
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win. See more awards »


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?



Credited cast:
Tom Kruse ... Himself
William Henry Butler ... Himself
Jack the Dogger ... Himself
Old Joe the Rainmaker ... Himself
The Oldfields Of Etadunna ... Themselves
Bejah ... Himself
Malcolm Arkaringa ... Himself
Georgina Barlow ... Herself (uncredited)
Helen Barlow ... Herself (uncredited)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Helen Hamp ... Girl Lost in Desert
Pauline Kruse ... Girl lost in desert


A documentary film which follows a mailman as he travels along the Birdsville Track in the Outback.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Shell Film Awarded the Grand Prix Absolute, Venice Film Festival, 1954 See more »




See all certifications »



Release Date:

1954 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

A Carrier Called Kruse  »


Box Office


£12,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The harsh weather conditions of 50+ degrees Celsius heat damaged all the sound tapes and they could not be used in post-production sound recording. All the voices had to be looped in afterwards at the studio in Sydney. See more »


Referenced in Tom Kruse Tribute (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Real life in the Australian Outback
26 March 2005 | by See all my reviews

This is a movie that shows what half a century ago, life was in the outback of Australia's desert.

A hostile location at anytime but back then an old Leyland truck, a flying doctors radio (antique design) was the way those hardy soles lived their lives. It's about life on the Birdsville Track as it was then. Tom Kruse and his 1936 Leyland Badgermail truck feature along with many of the people living along the track at that time.

Later in 1999 another movie "Last Trip from Birdsville" was made to commemorate Tom Kruse the truck driver in the 1954 movie, his last mail run, a re-enactment in 1999.

The Back of Beyond (1954), directed by John Heyer, was made by the Shell Film Unit. 3 The Shell Unit was set up in 1948 with Heyer in charge. Earlier Heyer had been a senior producer with the Federal Government's Film Division (later called the Commonwealth Film Unit, now Film Australia) - and indeed had been instrumental in its setting up in the last months of the second world war. Heyer was given a brief by Shell to make a "prestige" documentary that would capture the essence of Australia. He chose as his subject a weekly Birdsville Track mail run.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial