|Directed by||Phillip Noyce|
|Produced by||Phillip Noyce|
|Written by||John Emery
|Music by||Robert Murphy|
|Edited by||David Huggett|
|Distributed by||Home Cinema Group|
Backroads is a 1977 Australian film directed by Phillip Noyce. Two strangers – one white (Jack), one black (Gary) – steal a car in western New South Wales and drive around the coast. The original characters came from a story by Adelaide writer John Emery, with whom Noyce had worked on a short film. Australian reviews of the film were mixed, and it opened commercially in only one cinema.
Jack and Gary steal a car and head off around the back roads of Western New South Wales. They pickup a trio of fellow travellers - Gary's uncle Joe, a French hitchhiker and an embittered woman. Joe drunkenly shoots a stranger and they are chased by police. The police arrest Joe and Jack and shoot Gary.
- Bill Hunter as Jack
- Gary Foley as Gary
- Zack Martin as Joe
- Terry Camilleri as Jean Claude
- Julie McGregor as Anna
- Essie Coffey as Aboriginal Woman
- Allan Penney as Shopkeeper
John Emery had written once of Noyce's short films at film school, Caravan Park and pitched him another story, The First Day of Spring about a young aboriginal. They developed the script together.
The film was shot on location near Bourke and Brewarrina in western New South Wales and was funded in part by a $25,000 grant from the Creative Development Branch of the Australian Film Commission. Shooting finished in April 1977.
The film received mixed reviews in Australia but achieved a better response overseas.
- Andrew Pike and Ross Cooper, Australian Film 1900–1977: A Guide to Feature Film Production, Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1998, p 313
- "Backroads (1977) on ASO - Australia's audio and visual heritage online". Australianscreen.com.au. Retrieved 15 September 2010.
- David Stratton, The Last New Wave: The Australian Film Revival, Angus & Robertson, 1980 p204-205
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