Wake in Fright (1971)
Average Rating: 8.6/10
Reviews Counted: 32
Fresh: 32 | Rotten: 0
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 9/10
Critic Reviews: 11
Fresh: 11 | Rotten: 0
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 1,794
Awe-inspiring, brutal and stunning, Wake in Fright is the story of John Grant, a bonded teacher who arrives in the rough outback mining town of Bundanyabba, planning to stay overnight before catching the plane to Sydney. But, as his one night stretches to five, he plunges headlong toward his own destruction. When the alcohol-induced mist lifts, the educated John Grant is no more. Instead there is a self-loathing man in a desolate wasteland, dirty, red-eyed, sitting against a tree and looking at
Oct 5, 2012 Limited
Jan 15, 2013
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Slim de Grey
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Mark "Jacko" Jackson
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Wake in Fright is essential viewing for anyone interested in the roots of male violence.
A Conradian parable of a man succumbing to the wild, the film is remarkable for its raw, pointed dithe suggests, and you'll find the beast concealed behind the mask of propriety.
If you have any interest whatsoever in discovering the true classics of Australian cinema, there are far worse places you could start than with Wake in Fright.
Like the majestic camera movement with which it opens, Wake In Fright is a film that travels in slow, inexorable circles, presenting its paranoid nightmare of entrapment as Kafka down under.
The movie is a combination of existential horror story (a man winds up in a small-town hell and can't leave) and an examination of male violence and the ease with which men can fall into it.
This tale of sun-baked savagery has lost little of its audacity or ferocity while it languished unseen.
The raw, sweaty 1971 film is not a pretty portrayal of life in the outback, where men are crude, hard-drinking mates with no ambition beyond rough-house fun...
Brutal, but in a deceptively causal manner, Wake in Fright submits one the sharpest depictions of Outback life I've come into contact with, imagining the vast land as a sun-baked prison from which there is no escape.
A movie that shows us plenty of unsettling stuff but also knows that what viewers imagine is much more disturbing than what any movie can show.
This outrageously overlooked masterpiece is a wake-up call to film scholars who will now have to rethink what came first ‒ this film or Peckinpah's 'Straw Dogs," which basically charts the same territory?
"Wake in Fright" works both as an early instance of "Ozploitation" cinema and as a harsh critique of Australian colonialism and the absurdity of trying to bring so-called civilization to this vast arid wilderness.
Kotcheff, working from a novel adapted by Modesty Blaise screenwriter Evan Jones, ratchets up the sick humor and ghastly ribaldry to nail-biting heights.
Orchestrates landscape, music, demonic faces, and lots of blood, sweat, and vomit into a stark bacchanalia of men having fun.
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