105233822638866551.jpg
Screen cap from promotional trailer
form y The Adventures of Barry McKenzie single work   film/TV   humour   satire  
Issue Details: First known date: 1972 1972
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

After he comes into a small inheritance, Barry McKenzie (aka Bazza) decides to visit England with his aunt, which leads to many humerus and some not-so-humorous incidents with Poms from all persuasions and classes. As Andrew Pike and Ross Cooper note: 'The narrative offers a 'vigorous parody of the Australian "ocker," anti-intellectual, xenophobic, obsessed with beer and sex but never capable of relating positively with women, using a vernacular of prodigious vulgarity and inventiveness, and totally oblivious of anything beyond his own narrow conception of the order of things' (1980, p. 340).

Notes

  • Based on the Barry McKenzie comic strip written by Barry Humphries (and drawn by Nicholas Garland), from an idea conceived by British comedian Peter Cook. The cartoons were first published in England in Private Eye magazine, and later in The Wonderful World of Barry McKenzie (Macdonald and Co, 1968). The book, however, was banned in Australia by the Minister for Customs and Excise due to the humour's reliance on indecency. Interestingly, the Australian Government (under Prime Minister John Gorton) fully funded the film version of the book two years later through the newly created Australian Film Development Corporation. In 1974, another prime minister, Gough Whitlam, appeared as himself in the sequel, Barry McKenzie Holds His Own.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Link: Australian Screen (e-clips) (Sighted 10/12/2010)

Works about this Work

From Barry McKenzie to Priscilla : The Evolution of the Aussie Comedy Hero Luke Buckmaster , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 12 August 2015;
‘What Route Are You Taking?’ The Transnational Experience of the Barry McKenzie Movies Tony Moore , 2014 single work criticism
— Appears in: Continuum : Journal of Media & Cultural Studies , vol. 28 no. 5 2014; (p. 629-639)
'In this article I focus on the offshore life of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie and its big budget sequel to demonstrate the value of Australian cultural history to the field of screen studies and researchers interested in the transnationality of Australian cinema. The concept of historical mobilities and ‘routes’ helps us move beyond discourses of the Australian film revival, home-grown types and tropes and colony versus mother country to consider the creative influence of cosmopolitan bohemian and avant-garde movements in which the film-makers honed their craft and aesthetics, the offshore creative context, notably British satire, and the experience of cross-border travelling itself – and obstructions to that act – which is the central thematic and narrative concern of both films...'
The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Rewatched – Crude but Charming Luke Buckmaster , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 29 August 2014;

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
Beyond Empire : Australian Cinematic Identity in the Twenty-First Century Benito Cao , 2013 single work criticism
— Appears in: Studies in Australasian Cinema , September vol. 6 no. 3 2013; (p. 239-250)
'Australian cinema has played and continues to play an important part in the formation and formulation of Australia. This article explores the relation between Australia and empire through the analysis of three iconic cinematic characters: Barry McKenzie, Mick Dundee and Kenny Smyth. The point of departure is the notion that Australianness has been constructed as an identity caught between empires, between the old (British) empire and the new (American) empire. Australian cinema itself has been for most (if not all) of its history caught between the British Empire and the American Empire. Yet, recently there are signs that Australian films are repositioning Australia as part of the Global Village, suggesting that Australian national identity might be moving beyond the imperial articulations of Australianness. The evolution of the relation between Australia and Anglo-Empire symbolized by the three characters studied here hints at the possibility of a twenty-first century post-imperial Australiannes.' (Author's abstract)
Behaving Badly : The Coming-of-Age of a National Cinema Alice Healy-Ingram , 2013 single work column
— Appears in: Telling Stories : Australian Life and Literature 1935–2012 2013; (p. 350-356)
I Love You, Mate Rebecca Harkins-Cross , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 14 2012; (p. 38-39)
Who's Afraid of the Working Class? We Are Rebecca Harkins-Cross , 2011 single work column
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 13 2011; (p. 33, 37)
Passionate Amateurs : The Experimental Film and Television Fund and Modernist Film Practice in Australia Lisa French , Mark Poole , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Studies in Australasian Cinema , 24 August vol. 5 no. 2 2011; (p. 171-183)
'Most histories of the dynamism of the Australian film industry in the 1970s explore feature films, but a vital part of the creativity and energy of the revival occurred in the non-feature sector. A significant site of experimentation and originality in form, content and technique was the Experimental Film and Television Fund (EFTF). From its inception in 1970, The Australian Film Institute (AFI) managed the fund until 1977 when the Australian Film Commission (AFC) assumed control of it. Drawing on a series of interviews with key players involved in the fund during the AFI's tenure, and research for the book, Shining a Light: 50 Years of the Australian Film Institute (French and Poole 2009), this article traces this significant period of the history of Australian film production, and proposes that the AFI played an important role in promoting modernist film practice, and the Australian film revival, through its management of the EFTF.' (Editor's abstract)
How Australian is It? Alison Croggon , 2010 single work essay
— Appears in: Overland , Spring no. 200 2010; (p. 55-62)
Larrikin Ockers and Decent Blokes : The National Type in Australian Film Comedy Felicity Collins , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Creative Nation : Australian Cinema and Cultural Studies Reader 2009; (p. 154-165)
The Director on Some of His Films Bruce Beresford , 2008 single work column
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 27 - 28 September 2008; (p. 15)
y Not Quite Hollywood : The Wild, Untold Story of Ozploitation! Paul Harris , Collingwood : Madman Entertainment , 2008 Z1636275 2008 single work criticism (taught in 1 units)

Not Quite Hollywood is the story of Ozploitation.

More explicit, violent and energetic than anything out of Hollywood, Aussie genre movies such as Alvin Purple, The Man From Hong Kong, Patrick, Mad Max and Turkey Shoot presented a unique take on established cinematic conventions.

In England, Italy and the grindhouses and Drive-ins of North America, audiences applauded our homegrown marauding revheads with their brutish cars; our sprnky well-stacked heroines and our stunts - unparalleled in their quality and extreme danger!

Busting with outrageous anecdotes, trivia and graphic poster art - and including isights from key cast, crew and fans - including Quentin Tarantino - this is the wild, untold story of an era when Aussie cinema got its gear off and showed the world a full-frontal explosion of boobs, pubes, tubes...and even a little kung fu!

The Two Bazzas Keith Connolly , 2008 single work review
— Appears in: Senses of Cinema , 2008 no. 48 2008;

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
The Story of Bazza and Us Gabriella Coslovich , 2007 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 27 January 2007; (p. 3)
Strewth! Bazza Speaks Volumes Gabriella Coslovich , 2007 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 10-11 February 2007; (p. 18-19)
Gabriella Coslovich puts The Adventures of Barry McKenzie under the spotlight thirty-five years after its original film release.
y 'The Adventures of Barry McKenzie' Ayesha Waters , Perth : Centre for Research in Culture and Communication (Murdoch University) , 2006 Z1664372 2006 single work criticism Research undertaken by a student of the Centre for Culture and Communication (Murdoch University) into the 1974 feature film The Adventures of Barry McKenzie. Includes aspects relating to the production phase, critical reception, principal performers and production crew, references and a synopsis.
y The Barry McKenzie Movies Tony Moore , Strawberry Hills : Currency Press , 2005 Z1229014 2005 single work criticism (taught in 1 units)

'Bruce Beresford's a colourful film about an 'innocent abroad' as he blunders his way through the London of the 1970s was panned by the critics but a huge success with audiences. The film became the first Australian movie to make a million dollars, thereby playing a crucial part in the resurgence of the Australian film industry in the early 1970s by demonstrating the commercial viability of local production. It also did very well commercially in London, where it established a record for any Australian film released there.

'Based on Barry Humphries comic-strip character, which appeared in the British satirical magazine Private Eye in the 1960s, the screenplay was written by Humphries and Beresford, the story line deriving from the culture clash between the Australian innocent 'Bazza' McKenzie and the English - from a taxi driver who takes Barry from Heathrow to Earls Court by way of Stonehenge, to the decadent upper classes with their public school fetishes, the swinging scene of pop music promoters and Jesus freaks, and eventually the hallowed halls of BBC television. ' (Publication summary)

The Mythical Australian : Barry Humphries, Gough Whitlam and 'New Nationalism' Anne Pender , 2005 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Australian Journal of Politics and History , vol. 51 no. 1 2005; (p. 67-78)
'Gough Whitlam's decision in 1974 to appear in Barry Humphries's film about a larrikin abroad, Barry McKenzie Holds His Own, marks a potent moment in Australia's post-imperial history - a moment when the politics of Australian theatre and the theatre of Australian politics directly coincided. In their different spheres, Humphries and Whitlam dramatised the waning British connection felt by Australians. Whitlam's own version of 'new nationalism' was brash and confident enough to embrace the eccentricities and vulgarities of Humphries's satire. Yet Whitlam's 'new nationalism,' like Humphries's satire, was highly ambivalent. Humphries's first film, The Adventures of Barry McKenzie, was a direct product of the new nationalist enthusiasm that had brought Whitlam to power. Although it was savaged by the critics, the film was a box-office success. Intellectuals such as Patrick White, Manning Clark and Geoffrey Dutton lavished praise on Humphries and his satirical portrayal of Australian anxieties about culture and national identity. Humphries portrayed the underlying dilemma that Whitlam faced in refashioning the image of modern Australia: how to throw off the symbols of colonialism and find meaningful symbols to replace them. In the process, both the politician and the humourist rediscovered a particular and enduring affection for the mother country.'
Killing the Gatekeeper : Autonomy, Globality and Reclaiming Australian Cinema Matthew Clayfield , 2004 single work criticism
— Appears in: Senses of Cinema , October-December no. 33 2004;
'Recent Australian films still struggle to define a viable “national identity” – but is this even necessary?' (Publisher's abstract)
Cross-Cultural Differences between Neighbours : Teaching Australian Cinema in New Zealand Stephen Crofts , 2004 single work criticism
— Appears in: Thinking Australian Studies : Teaching Across Cultures 2004; (p. 349-365)
'Bazza' is a Good Simple Comedy Paddy McGuinness , 1972 single work review
— Appears in: The National Times , 23-28 October 1972; Creme de la Phlegm : Unforgettable Australian Reviews 2006; (p. 143-145)

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
The Two Bazzas Keith Connolly , 2008 single work review
— Appears in: Senses of Cinema , 2008 no. 48 2008;

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
Bazza Arrives On the Silver Screen Batman , 1972 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 19 August vol. 94 no. 4817 1972; (p. 6)

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
Bazza Brings It Up Sandra Hall , 1972 single work review
— Appears in: The Bulletin , 21 October vol. 94 no. 4826 1972; (p. 45)

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Rewatched – Crude but Charming Luke Buckmaster , 2014 single work review
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 29 August 2014;

— Review of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie Barry Humphries Bruce Beresford 1972 single work film/TV
y The Barry McKenzie Movies Tony Moore , Strawberry Hills : Currency Press , 2005 Z1229014 2005 single work criticism (taught in 1 units)

'Bruce Beresford's a colourful film about an 'innocent abroad' as he blunders his way through the London of the 1970s was panned by the critics but a huge success with audiences. The film became the first Australian movie to make a million dollars, thereby playing a crucial part in the resurgence of the Australian film industry in the early 1970s by demonstrating the commercial viability of local production. It also did very well commercially in London, where it established a record for any Australian film released there.

'Based on Barry Humphries comic-strip character, which appeared in the British satirical magazine Private Eye in the 1960s, the screenplay was written by Humphries and Beresford, the story line deriving from the culture clash between the Australian innocent 'Bazza' McKenzie and the English - from a taxi driver who takes Barry from Heathrow to Earls Court by way of Stonehenge, to the decadent upper classes with their public school fetishes, the swinging scene of pop music promoters and Jesus freaks, and eventually the hallowed halls of BBC television. ' (Publication summary)

The Story of Bazza and Us Gabriella Coslovich , 2007 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 27 January 2007; (p. 3)
Strewth! Bazza Speaks Volumes Gabriella Coslovich , 2007 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Sydney Morning Herald , 10-11 February 2007; (p. 18-19)
Gabriella Coslovich puts The Adventures of Barry McKenzie under the spotlight thirty-five years after its original film release.
y Lethal Humour: Nick Garland, Barry Humphries and 'The Adventures of Barry McKenzie' Anne Pender (interviewer), London : Menzies Centre for Australian Studies , 2003 Z1355072 2003 single work interview
The Director on Some of His Films Bruce Beresford , 2008 single work column
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 27 - 28 September 2008; (p. 15)
The Mythical Australian : Barry Humphries, Gough Whitlam and 'New Nationalism' Anne Pender , 2005 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Australian Journal of Politics and History , vol. 51 no. 1 2005; (p. 67-78)
'Gough Whitlam's decision in 1974 to appear in Barry Humphries's film about a larrikin abroad, Barry McKenzie Holds His Own, marks a potent moment in Australia's post-imperial history - a moment when the politics of Australian theatre and the theatre of Australian politics directly coincided. In their different spheres, Humphries and Whitlam dramatised the waning British connection felt by Australians. Whitlam's own version of 'new nationalism' was brash and confident enough to embrace the eccentricities and vulgarities of Humphries's satire. Yet Whitlam's 'new nationalism,' like Humphries's satire, was highly ambivalent. Humphries's first film, The Adventures of Barry McKenzie, was a direct product of the new nationalist enthusiasm that had brought Whitlam to power. Although it was savaged by the critics, the film was a box-office success. Intellectuals such as Patrick White, Manning Clark and Geoffrey Dutton lavished praise on Humphries and his satirical portrayal of Australian anxieties about culture and national identity. Humphries portrayed the underlying dilemma that Whitlam faced in refashioning the image of modern Australia: how to throw off the symbols of colonialism and find meaningful symbols to replace them. In the process, both the politician and the humourist rediscovered a particular and enduring affection for the mother country.'
Larrikin Ockers and Decent Blokes : The National Type in Australian Film Comedy Felicity Collins , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Creative Nation : Australian Cinema and Cultural Studies Reader 2009; (p. 154-165)
Bazza Turns 30 2003 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Age , 7 March 2003; (p. n. pag.)
An article written in response to the release of the 30th anniversary edition of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie.
y Not Quite Hollywood : The Wild, Untold Story of Ozploitation! Paul Harris , Collingwood : Madman Entertainment , 2008 Z1636275 2008 single work criticism (taught in 1 units)

Not Quite Hollywood is the story of Ozploitation.

More explicit, violent and energetic than anything out of Hollywood, Aussie genre movies such as Alvin Purple, The Man From Hong Kong, Patrick, Mad Max and Turkey Shoot presented a unique take on established cinematic conventions.

In England, Italy and the grindhouses and Drive-ins of North America, audiences applauded our homegrown marauding revheads with their brutish cars; our sprnky well-stacked heroines and our stunts - unparalleled in their quality and extreme danger!

Busting with outrageous anecdotes, trivia and graphic poster art - and including isights from key cast, crew and fans - including Quentin Tarantino - this is the wild, untold story of an era when Aussie cinema got its gear off and showed the world a full-frontal explosion of boobs, pubes, tubes...and even a little kung fu!

y 'The Adventures of Barry McKenzie' Ayesha Waters , Perth : Centre for Research in Culture and Communication (Murdoch University) , 2006 Z1664372 2006 single work criticism Research undertaken by a student of the Centre for Culture and Communication (Murdoch University) into the 1974 feature film The Adventures of Barry McKenzie. Includes aspects relating to the production phase, critical reception, principal performers and production crew, references and a synopsis.
How Australian is It? Alison Croggon , 2010 single work essay
— Appears in: Overland , Spring no. 200 2010; (p. 55-62)
Australian Screen Comedy : An Overview David McKie , R. J. Thompson , Sue Turnbull , 1996 single work criticism
— Appears in: Continuum : Journal of Media & Cultural Studies , vol. 10 no. 2 1996; (p. 7-10)
Killing the Gatekeeper : Autonomy, Globality and Reclaiming Australian Cinema Matthew Clayfield , 2004 single work criticism
— Appears in: Senses of Cinema , October-December no. 33 2004;
'Recent Australian films still struggle to define a viable “national identity” – but is this even necessary?' (Publisher's abstract)
Cross-Cultural Differences between Neighbours : Teaching Australian Cinema in New Zealand Stephen Crofts , 2004 single work criticism
— Appears in: Thinking Australian Studies : Teaching Across Cultures 2004; (p. 349-365)
Who's Afraid of the Working Class? We Are Rebecca Harkins-Cross , 2011 single work column
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 13 2011; (p. 33, 37)
Passionate Amateurs : The Experimental Film and Television Fund and Modernist Film Practice in Australia Lisa French , Mark Poole , 2011 single work criticism
— Appears in: Studies in Australasian Cinema , 24 August vol. 5 no. 2 2011; (p. 171-183)
'Most histories of the dynamism of the Australian film industry in the 1970s explore feature films, but a vital part of the creativity and energy of the revival occurred in the non-feature sector. A significant site of experimentation and originality in form, content and technique was the Experimental Film and Television Fund (EFTF). From its inception in 1970, The Australian Film Institute (AFI) managed the fund until 1977 when the Australian Film Commission (AFC) assumed control of it. Drawing on a series of interviews with key players involved in the fund during the AFI's tenure, and research for the book, Shining a Light: 50 Years of the Australian Film Institute (French and Poole 2009), this article traces this significant period of the history of Australian film production, and proposes that the AFI played an important role in promoting modernist film practice, and the Australian film revival, through its management of the EFTF.' (Editor's abstract)
I Love You, Mate Rebecca Harkins-Cross , 2012 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , no. 14 2012; (p. 38-39)
Beyond Empire : Australian Cinematic Identity in the Twenty-First Century Benito Cao , 2013 single work criticism
— Appears in: Studies in Australasian Cinema , September vol. 6 no. 3 2013; (p. 239-250)
'Australian cinema has played and continues to play an important part in the formation and formulation of Australia. This article explores the relation between Australia and empire through the analysis of three iconic cinematic characters: Barry McKenzie, Mick Dundee and Kenny Smyth. The point of departure is the notion that Australianness has been constructed as an identity caught between empires, between the old (British) empire and the new (American) empire. Australian cinema itself has been for most (if not all) of its history caught between the British Empire and the American Empire. Yet, recently there are signs that Australian films are repositioning Australia as part of the Global Village, suggesting that Australian national identity might be moving beyond the imperial articulations of Australianness. The evolution of the relation between Australia and Anglo-Empire symbolized by the three characters studied here hints at the possibility of a twenty-first century post-imperial Australiannes.' (Author's abstract)
To Russell Davies : A letter from Cardiff i "Dear Dai: I'm writing to you from Location", Clive James , 1977 single work poetry
— Appears in: Fan-Mail : Seven Verse Letters 1977; (p. 13-21) Other Passports : Poems 1958-1985 1986; (p. 69-76) The Book of My Enemy : Collected Verse, 1958-2003 2003; (p. 133-140)
How Bazza Turned the Tide of Cultural Cringe... Phillip Adams , 1992 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 12-13 September 1992; (p. rev 3,6)
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