In this new series I'll be looking at a variety of Australian films... some classic, some not so classic. Chime in on the comments section if you've seen it and let us know what you thought of it.
"That's the trouble with you Australians, you take your games too seriously"
Stacy Keach plays a quirky, wisecracking truck driver who falls in with a hitchhiker (Jamie Lee Curtis) after he thinks he might have witnessed a murder in this Australian roadside thriller. Increasingly considered one of the classic '80s ozploitation films, Road Games is a pitch-perfect adventure across the desolate Nullabor Plain that has a lot of fun putting two familiar Hollywood faces into a stark and unforgiving Australian landscape.
It's a little cheesy but Stacy Keach seems to be having a lot of fun with such a vivid leading character part, a truck driver who refers to himself as an 'aristocrat' whilst playing harmonica along to classical music and arguing with his pet Dingo. The script also has a surprising amount of wit, and Keach comes across like Cary Grant in the Australian outback. The music, location work and cinematography actually do quite a good job of evoking Golden Era Hollywood, and Jamie Lee Curtis plays her fleeting but pivotal role with just the right combination of cheek and mystery.
I would describe Road Games as a bit like a mix of Rear Window, Duel and The Hitcher, and it delivers on thrills and creepiness without getting schlocky or gore-obsessed. We're talking glimpses of murder in lightning strikes across the desert night, wrongful accusations, mistaken identities, clifftop confrontations, dismembered bodies, kidnappings, twists, the whole lot. It's a class act all the way, and worthy of comparison to vintage Hitchcock.