Squeeze a Flower

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Squeeze a Flower
Directed by Marc Daniels
Produced by George Willoughby[1]
Written by Charles Isaacs
Starring Walter Chiari
Jack Albertson
Rowena Wallace
Music by Tommy Leonetti
Cinematography Brain West
Edited by Stanley Moore
Production
company
Distributed by British Empire Films
Release dates
13 February 1970
Running time
102 Minutes
Country Australia
Language English
Budget $750,000[2]

Squeeze a Flower is 1970 Australian comedy film directed by Marc Daniels and starring Walter Chiari.

Plot[edit]

Brother George is the only monk at the Italian Monastery who knows the secret recipe of the popular liqueur that is the sole source of income for the monastery. When he feels their sole distributor, a local wine merchant, isn't giving the Monastery a fair price, he leaves and moves to Australia. There he works at a vineyard picking grapes and starts making the Liquor in his spare time.

George then comes to the attention of the Winery owner Alfredo Brazzi and the two agree to a partnership to make the liqueur. Alfredo is unaware George is a monk and that he sends 50 Percent of the money back to his Italian monastery.

Alfredo and his son-in-law Tim constantly try to steal the secret recipe. They recruit June for their skulduggery, but she falls in love with George, also unaware of his religious calling. Finally, the Italian wine merchant travels to Sydney, willing to make a deal with Brother George. The merchant ends up paying double the price he had previously rejected.[3]

Cast[edit]

  • Walter Chiari – Brother George
  • Jack Albertson – Alfredo Brazzi
  • Rowena Wallace – June Phillips
  • Dave Allen – Tim O'Mahoney
  • Kirrily Nolan – Maria O'Mahoney
  • Alec Kellaway – the Abbot
  • Michael Laurence – Brother James
  • Alan Tobin – Brother Peter
  • Charles McCallum – Brother Sebastian
  • Harry Lawrence – Vequis
  • Roger Ward – bosun
  • Alex Mozart – truck driver
  • Sandy Harbutt – grape pickers
  • Amanda Irving – grape picker
  • Jeff Ashby – Bert Andrews
  • Penny Sugg -stewardess
  • Sue Lloyd – receptionist
  • Barry Crocker – waiter
  • Lea Denfield – flower seller
  • Pat Sullivan – laboratory assistant
  • Bobby Limb
  • Dawn Lake

Production[edit]

The film was meant to be the first in a proposed series of ten films made jointly by NLT Productions and Group W. NLT Productions was a television production company in Sydney and was supported by Motion Picture Investments, a company associated with various Australian businessmen including Sir Reginald Ansett.[4] Group W was a division of the American Westinghouse Broadcasting Company.[2]

Leading cast and crew were imported: the director, writer and producer were all American and the lead actors were from overseas: Italian Walter Chiari, American Jack Albertson and Irish David Allen. It was Allen's first major film role.[5]

Filming began in mid February 1969and only took a month. Shooting took place in the studio of Ajax Films in Sydney and on location in St Patrick's College, Manly, and Mount Pleasant vineyard in the Hunter Valley.[2][6]

Walter Chiari had previously made They're a Weird Mob (1966) in Australia. He married his girlfriend during the shoot.[7]

Release[edit]

The film's premiere in Sydney was attended by Australian Prime Minister John Gorton but the movie was not well received, commercially or critically.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Foreign actors for Australian film.". The Canberra Times (National Library of Australia). 3 January 1969. p. 10. Retrieved 10 December 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d Andrew Pike and Ross Cooper, Australian Film 1900–1977: A Guide to Feature Film Production, Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1998, 246
  3. ^ "Italian monk with a secret liqueur recipe.". The Australian Women's Weekly (National Library of Australia). 18 February 1970. p. 26. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  4. ^ "Mr ANSETT ON BOARD.". The Canberra Times (National Library of Australia). 13 March 1969. p. 3. Retrieved 10 December 2013. 
  5. ^ "Comedian returns.". The Canberra Times (National Library of Australia). 18 February 1969. p. 3. Retrieved 10 December 2013. 
  6. ^ ""SQUEEZE A FLOWER".". The Australian Women's Weekly (National Library of Australia). 21 May 1969. p. 17. Retrieved 11 September 2012. 
  7. ^ "Happiness is a man called Walter Chiari.". The Australian Women's Weekly (National Library of Australia). 2 April 1969. p. 3. Retrieved 11 September 2012. 

External links[edit]