Finally we get to another Ozploitation film. This time it comes in the form of a dystopian society that hasn't learned to "NEVER HUNT A MAN" in Turkey Shoot or Escape 2000 from Brian-Trenchard Smith. The full movie is finally on YouTube so be sure to watch this one. It's a hoot.
Immunity to poison gas - 2.5 out of 10
Turkey Shoot was released in Australia in 1982 but didn’t grace America's shores until 1983, when it was re-titled Escape 2000. It is one of the more beloved films to come out of the Ozploitation era. Director Brian-Trenchard Smith is making his second appearance on Stinker Madness, his first being The Man From Hong Kong. He will undoubtedly by back, probably between 5 and 10 times. This guy gets it done with none.... money that is. The standard of a BTS (Brian Trenchard-Smith) production is a look and feel much bigger than the budget.
The film also has a rare distinction of being a Hemdale production. Apparently not one of the best Hemdale productions as later films produced by the company, Platoon and The Last Emperor won back to back Academy Awards for Best Picture. David Hemmings, at the time co-owner of Hemdale Productions, ended up having to direct some of the second unit sequences as the production schedule was cut from an original 44 days to 28 days. Oddly on a previous film BTS was chosen to take over for Hemmings, had Hemmings continued to go over schedule. The tension was apparently multiplied by Hemmings having an affair with one of the cast. At some point they were both in a production office and BTS dumped a beer on Hemmings, which turned out to be the end of the feuding.
The film was made under the 10BA Australian tax exemption scheme, which allowed, at the time this film was made, a 150% tax concession. Many films using this unique financial backing would usually spend a little more to bring in foreign actors to muster overseas appeal.
Which brings us to our lead, Stephen Railsback of Dallas Texas. Railsback gained notoriety for playing Charlie Manson in the miniseries Helter Skelter. He also had a role in another poplular miniseries From Here To Eternity. I loved him in Stuntman. Fans of the stinkers will know him as the lead in Lifeforce.
Olivia Hussey also had her moment in the television spotlight. She played Mary mother of Jesus in the television event, Jesus of Nazareth. She had also won a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Juliet in Franco Zeffirelli’s Romeo and Juliet, which is the one we all had to watch in school before that dickface Baz Lurman got in on the action and made Romeo and Juliet harder to watch, which was previously thought impossible. Hussey is being mentioned due to me seeing some pictures of her in her 20s. She is a candidate for the Time Machine Hit List.
Trenchard-Smith has stated that this is supposed to be a satire. Fun that we should get to evaluate it after Starship Troopers which performs admirably at its satirical task. We shall see how he fares in comparison to Verhoeven. The rumor is, the Escape 2000 version is missing a couple minutes of the most extreme and gratuitous visuals the film originally had to offer. I am hoping as this is a Turkey Shoot labeled Blu-ray, that it’s the original content. This is supposed to be Australia’s most shocking offering from the period and has been labeled as one of the trashiest films ever made.
KAEOF: Roger Ward from Mad Max.