Wake in Fright
Title: Wake in Fright
Release year: 1971
Genres: Drama, Thriller
Director: Ted Kotcheff
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Gary Bond, Chips Rafferty
Rating: 4/5

After a bad gambling bet, a schoolteacher is marooned in a town full of crazy, drunk, violent men who threaten to make him just as crazy, drunk, and violent.

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A Descent into Outback Hell: Wake in Fright (1971)

2024-05-09

Wake in Fright is not for the faint of heart. This 1971 psychological thriller plunges viewers into the unforgiving Australian outback alongside John Grant (Gary Bond), a schoolteacher whose simple desire to get home gets waylaid by a devastating gambling loss. Stranded in the dusty, booze-soaked town of The Yabba, John finds himself trapped in a nightmarish descent.

The film excels in its portrayal of isolation and desperation. Director Ted Kotcheff doesn’t shy away from the harsh realities of outback life, showcasing a community fueled by toxic masculinity, heavy drinking, and a disturbing disconnect from normalcy. Donald Pleasence delivers a chilling performance as a wealthy gambler who preys on John’s vulnerabilities, while Bond portrays the descent with a heartbreaking naturalism.

While some might find the film’s brutality excessive, it’s this unflinching honesty that elevates Wake in Fright. It’s a slow burn, but one that burrows under your skin and lingers long after the credits roll. Be prepared for a challenging watch, but one that undeniably leaves a mark.

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AKA: Backwater,Bite the Bullet,Despertar en el infierno,Félelemben élni,Ferien in der Hölle,Het vreselijk ontwaken,Holiday in Hell,Hombre sin mañana,Kouya no chidoriashi,Kova loma,Le Réveil dans la terreur,Na krańcu świata,Nattens jegere,Opprøret,Outback,Outback - Le réveil dans la terreur,Pelos Caminhos do Inferno,Réveil dans la terreur,Savane,Sweat, Dust and Beer... There's Nothing Else Out Here Mate!,The Terrible Awakening,Vaarallinen loma,Wake in Fright,Wake in Fright: Réveil dans la terreur,Zapadákov,Ξύπνημα στον τρόμο,Буђење у ужасу,Опасное пробуждение,荒野の千鳥足
Al Thomas,Buster Fiddess,Carlo Manchini,Chips Rafferty,Colin Hughes,Dawn Lake,Donald Pleasence,Gary Bond,Gordon Piper,Harry Lawrence,Jack Thompson,Jacko Jackson,John Armstrong,John Dalleen,John Meillon,Liam Reynolds,Maggie Dence,Nancy Knudsen,Nelson,Norman Erskine,Owen Moase,Peter Whittle,Robert McDarra,Slim DeGrey,Sylvia Kay,Tex Foote
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