Put another shrimp on the barbie! Sorry, it wouldn’t be right to not make at least one terrible Australian-related joke, but in any case, this week we’ve got ten Ozploitation (or at least Oz-made) flicks for you to shake a dingo at! Sorry, two. Strewth, this is tough. As usual, the box art goes straight to the Netflix page.
10. Alien Visitor (1995)
Rolf de Heer (BAD BOY BUBBY, ENCOUNTER AT RAVEN’S GATE) has quietly been making some of the more unique films for the last couple decades, and his tale of an alien who chastises a man for ecological damage is no exception. More a character drama than an action film, ignore the lame cover art and give it a chance.
9. Nightmares (1980)
Not to be confused with every other film called NIGHTMARES, this flick about a possibly deranged actress who witnessed her mother’s death was also released as STAGE FRIGHT — not to be confused with every other film called STAGE FRIGHT.
8. 100 Bloody Acres (2013)
It didn’t find much of an audience when it was released here in the U.S. last year, but Cameron and Colin Cairnes’ gory back comedy about a group of kids that stumble on a fertilized business with a super-secret ingredient is a lot of fun, and deserves a wider reputation.
7. Dead End Drive-In (1986)
One of the big names in Ozploitation is Brian Trenchard-Smith, who shows up twice in our list, first with this futuristic take about a drive-in full of undesirables…
6. BMX Bandits (1983)
…and next with this tale of BMX riders against bank thieves that features an early performance by Nicole Kidman.
5. The Horseman (2008)
A great Australian thriller about a father (Peter Marshall) determined to get revenge for the death of his daughter. A highly recommended, brutal vengeance flick that fans of DEATH WISH and HARDCORE should definitely check out.
4. Wake in Fright (1971)
Ted Kotcheff directed this dark tale of a schoolteacher in a small town in the outback that was good enough to get re-released by Drafthouse Films.
3. The Hunter (2011)
Willem Dafoe is sent to hunt the last Tasmanian tiger in Daniel Nettheim’s beautifully-shot thriller. With Sam Neill.
2. The Snowtown Murders (2011)
Based on a series of murders in a small Australian town, Justin Kurzel’s hypnotically vicious film packs more of an emotional punch than just about anything I’ve seen in the past year. Taking the tact of showing snippets of events rather than an easily coherent storyline, SNOWTOWN delves deeply into the relationship between a psychopath who murders those whom he’s morally repulsed by, and the teenage boy he takes under his wing. It’s not for all tastes by any means, but anyone who can walk out of SNOWTOWN without some reaction is probably someone to stay away from.
1. Breaker Morant (1980)
Regarded as one of the best war films of all time, Bruce Beresford’s tale of three lieutenants on trial for war crimes as a distraction ranks alongside the likes of PATHS OF GLORY and THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI even if its unfamiliar setting (the Second Boer War) makes it a lesser-known entity to U.S. viewers. Edward Woodward stars, with Bryan Brown and Jack Thompson.
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