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Heatwave (film)

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Title: Heatwave (film)  
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Subject: 1982 in film, Judy Davis, List of films set in Australia, Bill Hunter (actor), John Meillon, Australian New Wave, Carole Skinner, Juanita Nielsen, Peter Hehir, Richard Moir
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Heatwave (film)

This article is about a 1982 Australian film. For other uses, see Heat wave (disambiguation).

Directed by Phillip Noyce
Produced by Hilary Linstead
Written by Mark Stiles
Tim Gooding
Phillip Noyce
Marc Rosenberg
Starring Judy Davis
Richard Moir
Bill Hunter
Music by Cameron Allan
Cinematography Vincent Monton
Editing by John Scott
Distributed by Umbrella Entertainment
Release date(s) 1982
Running time 93 minutes
Country Australia
Language English
Budget AU $1 million[1]
Box office AU $267,000

Heatwave is a 1982 Australian film directed by Phillip Noyce based on the murder of Juanita Nielsen. It was the second of two films inspired by this story that came out around this time, the first being The Killing of Angel Street (1981).

Plot summary

Around Christmas time a heatwave hits Sydney and an architect undertakes a controversial project.



The original script was called King's Cross and was written by Tim Gooding and Mark Stiles. The final script was by Phil Noyce and Mark Rosenberg.[2] Phil Noyce:

Heatwave was the story of a working-class Protestant boy who made good. I don't know whether audiences realised that, but we had always assumed that he was a working-class Protestant and that Judy Davis's character was a middle-class Catholic girl. She, in the Catholic saintly tradition, had adopted a social cause - had set herself up as the spokesperson and protector of the working class. He, as a working-class boy, of course, was now forced to confront the moral implications of his own success and how that affected other people. In a way, the religious and ethnic backgrounds of the two characters were just a continuation of the conflicts that we had seen in Newsfront, but Australia had by this stage moved from a principally working-class and upper-class society to a principally middle-class society. That's captured in the atmosphere of inner Sydney, its buildings and the regulations of law and government.[3]


Reflecting on the film Noyce said:

I’d have no doubt shot it differently … told the story differently, today... Maybe that’s because I’m more conservative. I might have made the connections between the conspirators more certain, rather than implied. Heatwave belongs to a different era in Australian cinema, a time when we took a lot risks. I guess that comes with youth – the youth of the director and the youth of that second new wave of filmmakers. It was a time when there was a love affair between audiences and Australian cinema, something which these days is rather on and off.[1]


The film was nominated for two AFI Awards in 1982.

Box office

Heatwave grossed $267,000 at the box office in Australia,[4] which is equivalent to $776,970 in 2009 dollars.

Home Media

Heatwave was released on DVD by Umbrella Entertainment in July 2007. The DVD is compatible with all region codes and includes special features such as the theatrical trailer, Umbrella Entertainment trailers, a stills gallery and an interview with Phillip Noyce titled Sweating It Out.[5]

See also


Further reading

External links

  • Internet Movie Database
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