The Siege of Pinchgut 1959


I always thought that this was a very unappealing title – in fact in the USA it became ‘Four Desperate Men’ – but neither of these were very good from a promotional angle in my opinion.


Anyway the film starred Heather Sears and Aldo Ray. 

Heather Sears at that time had just played the title role in ‘The Story of Esther Costello’  and then a starring role in the very successful ‘Room at the Top’

Later  in 1961 she played Christine in ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ – a straight  non musical Hammer Films Production with Herbert Lom excellent as the Phantom – and Michael Gough in an unpleasant role.

She ventured to  Australia to act in the last Ealing film The Siege of Pinchgut  in which she played a girl hostage (daughter of the caretaker of the tiny island fort of Pinchgut in Sydney Harbour)

This last weekI have been staying in Sydney visiting our daughter and family and passed by Pinchgut Island so was able to take a good look at it. Would have been very difficult to escape from here without assistance.


In the film she forms a romantic liaison with an escaped convict ( aided and abetted by his brother and two accomplices) who have taken the caretaker and his family prisoner. He has done this to try to clear his name.

The film ends in a dramatic shoot-out with the authorities. 

The Siege of Pinchgut 1958

This film has, though, become a classic of the Australian cinema.

The Siege of Pinchgut 1958 2

ABOVE – an action scene on the island

The Siege of Pinchgut 1958 3


ABOVE – Tensions run high

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