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Mr. Reliable: A True Story Details


Based on one of the most bizarre hostage-situations ever, this Australian comedy-drama is set in the late '60s when the youth were beginning to rebel against war and government. Set in 1968 Sydney during a scorching summer the whole mess begins when convicted car thief Wally Mellish gets out of prison, rents a hovel on the town's outskirts and gets involved with Beryl, the single mother of a two-year-old daughter. They move into together and dim-bulbed Wally, wanting to show his affection steals the shiny ornaments from a pair of Jaguars. Unfortunately he is not a clever thief and the police soon show up at his door. Not wanting to return to prison, Wally panics and grabs his gun. Thinking he is holding Beryl and her daughter hostage, the police soon surround the house and start a lengthy siege. Unfortunately, the police commissioner, aware of youthful civil unrest spawned by an unprovoked police attack on peaceful anti-war demonstrators a few weeks before realizes that situation requires kid-glove handling and so orders his deputy to negotiate with Wally. Word quickly gets out and soon the media stampedes to the situation. This in turn attracts hoards of tourists and opportunistic street vendors to create an unparalleled circus outside. Meanwhile, in the house, Wally and Beryl are delighted by their new found fame and decide to celebrate by getting married and having the police commissioner himself act as best man. The state premier, appalled by the brouhaha and afraid for his own career, demands that the commissioner be more aggressive and as a result gets taken hostage himself. It only gets stranger from there, but that is half the fun. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi


Colin Friels
as Wally Mellish
Jacqueline McKenzie
as Beryl Muddle
Paul Sonkkila
as Police Commissioner Norm Allan
Barry Otto
as Premier
Lisa Hensley
as News Reporter
Ken Radley
as Gordon Morgan
Frank Gallacher
as Don Fergusson
Neil Fitzpatrick
as Rev. Paton
George Shevtsov
as Jakovitch
Aaron Blabey
George Shevtsov
as Jakovitch
Neil Fitzpatrick
as Rev. Paton
Frank Gallacher
as Don Fergusson


Nadia Tass
Jim McElroy
Terry Hayes
Terry Hayes
Don Catchlove
David Parker
Phil Judd
Peter Carrodus
Jon Dowding
Production Designer
Philip Drake
Art Director
John Schiefelbein
Sound/Sound Designer
Bob Donaldson
First Assistant Director
Liz Mullinar
Dennis Kiely
Line Producer