The moment Network Ten announced a Wake In Fright miniseries, the haters let loose on the project.
Meanwhile, the 1961 book is considered a seminal novel.
So, to be fair, the makers of this miniseries were probably right to worry. Luckily for them (and us), this series will grip you from the opening scene.
Wake In Fright begins with a shot of a young man running for his life through the desert.
Covered in blood and sweat, it’s clear he’s found himself in a terrible situation.
We then wind back the clock three days to see John Grant, played by the impressive Sean Keenan, finishing up his last day as a school teacher in the small town of Tiboonda.
Desperate to get home and see his girlfriend in Sydney, John hightails it out of the sticks, but hits a kangaroo on the way, rendering his car useless.
Stuck in the nearby town of Bundanyabba while he waits on repairs, John mingles with the locals, unaware things are not as they seem.
While Wake In Fright has the weight of history on its side, it’s also boosted by a top-shelf cast.
Sean, a scene-stealer in Hoges: The Paul Hogan Story and Puberty Blues, has truly reached leading-man status.
Meanwhile, David Wenham is at his menacing best as Jock Crawford, an unlikeable cop. Alex Dimitriades also stars as Evan “Doc” Tydonas.
While the two-part series will inevitably be compared to the film, they’re different beasts.
But one thing they do share is that both will have you glued to the edge of your seat.