Capital Celluloid 2014 - Day 46: Sat Feb 15

Wake in Fright (Kotcheff, 1971): Rio Cinema, 11.30pm

This is a Cigarette Burns film club production and  a special screening of this genuine cult movie on 35mm. You can find more details on their Facebook page here and this is their introduction:

Hands down one of Australia's true cinematic gems, from the man who brought us First Blood and The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz we get an apocalyptic trek through the darkest depths of life in a thrown away mining town. Trapped in Donald Pleasence's whirlwind of booze and live for the moment devastation, a passing schoolteacher is pushed to extremes, desperate to escape... As much as we all love Pleasence in Puma Man, his performance in Wake in Fright is without question a lifetime best. We are beyond excited to be presenting the only 35mm screening of this powerhouse, this side of Hadrian's Wall. Once we are finished with it, off it goes back to the Australian National Film and Sound Archive. This is your ONE chance to see this on celluloid. 

Chicago Reader review:
Ted Kotcheff (First Blood, The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz) directed this forgotten Australian masterpiece (1971) about an arrogant Sydney schoolteacher (Garry Bond) who's slowly driven mad after a prolonged stay in the Yabba, a desolate mining town in the middle of the Australian outback. After gambling away every dollar he has, Bond succumbs to the aggressive hospitality of the locals, and they condition him to their brutish lifestyle, which seems to consist mostly of constant drinking, random fistfights, anarchic destruction of other people's property, and kangaroo hunting. A Conradian parable of a man succumbing to the wild, the film is remarkable for its raw, pointed depiction of human behavior. Push a man too far, Kotcheff suggests, and you'll find the beast concealed behind the mask of propriety.

Drew Hunt

Here is the Masters of Cinema trailer.

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