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Absent Without Leave

Film (Trailer and Excerpts) – 1992

In 1992 Australian soap star Craig McLachlan (Neighbours) landed in New Zealand, to tackle one of his earliest starring roles in a movie. McLachlan plays Ed — a WWll soldier who goes AWOL — in a story 74-year-old writer James Edwards drew from his own life. When Ed is shipped overseas with no leave, he feels obliged to make sure that his recently pregnant wife Daisy (Katrina Hobbs, from Home and Away) is OK before he departs. But then the days become weeks. For director John Laing the road movie offered a chance to explore changing gender roles, as women discovered life beyond house and family.

....a young man and a woman cast headlong into the minefield of love and marriage, growing up at a time when there was no time for either, and in a society where the traditional roles of men and women were changing.
– Director John Laing describes what appealed to him about the story, in the Absent Without Leave press kit

Produced by

Meridian Film Productions


Made with funding from the New Zealand Film Commission, in association with NZ On Air


Song 'So Blue is the Sea' composed by Don McGlashan