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Wolf Creek (2005)

Three backpackers stranded in the Australian outback are befriended by a local who turns out to be a sadistic psychopath and will plunge them into a hellish nightmare of insufferable torture.

Director:

(as Greg Mclean)

Writer:

(as Greg Mclean)
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Popularity
3,283 ( 12)

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3 wins & 26 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Gordon Poole ...
...
Phil Stevenson ...
Geoff Revell ...
...
Bazza
Aaron Sterns ...
Michael Moody ...
Andrew Reimer ...
Vicki Reimer ...
Isabella Reimer ...
David Rock ...
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Storyline

Three backpackers travel into the Australian Outback, only to find themselves stranded at Wolf Creek crater. Once there they are encountered by a bushman, Mick Taylor, who offers them a ride back to his place. Little do the three know that their adventure into the Outback, would be a complete nightmare after the backpackers find a way to escape.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Thrill Is In The Hunt. See more »

Genres:

Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong gruesome violence, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

25 December 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El Cazador  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£554,618 (UK) (18 September 2005)

Gross:

$16,188,180 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was shot by doing a couple of takes sticking rigidly to the script, and then allowing the actors to improvise. Many of the scenes in the final film include the improvised material. For example, the scene between Ben (Nathan Phillips) and the mechanic (Phil Stevenson) checking out the car, the party scenes, the bit where Ben plays with the flashlight after being stranded, and the camp fire belching contest scene. In addition much of Mick Taylor's colorful dialog was improvised by John Jarratt. See more »

Goofs

When Mick appears with his truck to help the three stranded backpackers, to the left of Ben, the legs of a crew member and the shadow he/she is casting are visible. See more »

Quotes

[Liz has Mick at gunpoint]
Mick Taylor: Now Lizzy... A rifle in the wrong hands can be you know, really dangerous. So, GIVE ME THE FUCKING...
[Liz shoots him]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The producers would like to thank ... the people of Hawker, Port Augusta, Flinders Ranges and South Australia, ... Frank, Marie and the entire Mclean family See more »

Connections

Referenced in Top Gear: Best of Australia: Part 1 (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Eagle Rock
(1971)
Written by Ross Wilson (as R. Wilson)
Performed by Daddy Cool
(Mushroom Music Publishing)
Under License from BMG Australia Limited
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Surprisingly effective and chilling.
14 January 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Let me preface this by saying that I did not view the trailer before I saw this movie, nor did I really know anything about it. I do not know if that will lessen the impact at all, but it might (not sure what they show in the trailer).

Writer/producer/director McLean shot this movie on a digital HD handy cam, giving it an amateurish feel - but it is far from amateur. The first 45 minutes feel like a completely different movie than the last hour or so, and that is one of this movie's many strengths. McLean spends time letting the audience get to know the three main protagonists, who are Liz, Kristy, and Ben. They girls, who are both from Britain, are nearing the end of their Australian excursion, and they set off with their new Aussie mate, Ben, on a road trip/backpacking trip across the country.

McLean has an eye for the unsettling, even in the mostly warm first minutes, and he uses the stark colors and landscapes of the deepening outback to give it a slowly building sense of dread. Their are a few ominous signs - a dog barking viciously at something off screen, a rather unpleasant encounter in an out of the way gas station, and an awkward conversation about UFOs and aliens. I knew it was a horror movie, and the slow buildup is a wonderful way to create true and genuine tension.

Another thing that creates tension is the fact that the three main characters are so well fleshed out, and feel so real, that the audience begins to care for them. Knowing it is a horror movie, we know that something is eventually going to happen, and beginning segment, in its quiet, tender moments, make you wonder when that is going to happen. It's all part of the extremely good package.

Another thing to like about this horror movie is that the characters, for the most part, do not do any stupid things or horror clichés; rather, they are trying to survive and they do respond in believable ways to the horrors around them. And when those horrors finally come, after an particularly amazing segue (going to sleep...sunset...waking up hogtied), they do not let up.

Part of the criticism of this movie is that it is realistically violent and brutal, but it's a juxtaposition from the first half. It's also a juxtaposition of civilized vs. uncivilized, and the sterile, uncompromising landscape of the Outback is the perfect place for this to occur. There wasn't an over the top amount of gore, which is good, because the cruelty of what the three endure is enough to churn anyone's stomach. However, the movie is not just simple exploitation - far from it, actually. It's about that deep-seated fear of the unknown, and what could happen in an unfamiliar place.

McLean, while following a somewhat formulaic idea, stays far away from the usual stupidity. The fact that we have grown to care for the three main characters is why the second half is so effective, because there are things that happen to them that are so brutal that you feel it right with them.

'Wolf Creek' is one of the few good/great horror movies I've ever seen.


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