Smash Palace is a Kiwi cinema classic and launched Roger Donaldson's American career. Al Shaw (a brilliant, brooding Bruno Lawrence) is a racing car driver who now runs a wrecker's yard in the shadow of Mount Ruapehu. His French wife Jacqui is unhappy there and leaves him, taking up with Al's best mate. When she restricts Al's access to his young daughter, his frustration explodes and he goes bush with the girl, desperate not to lose her too. "There's no road back" runs the tagline. New Yorker critic Pauline Kael called the film "amazingly accomplished".
God Foley, what do you want from my life? You've got my wife and the kid. Tell you what, I'll give you the shirt from my back. Here yar. She bought it.– Al (Bruno Lawrence) to Ray Foley (Keith Aberdein)
Title licensed by NZ Film Commission.
Made with funding from the New Zealand Film Commission.
Original Music, Sharon O’Neill, (a soundtrack LP was issued in 1981 but has not been re-released).
Available to rent and buy from NZ Film on Demand.