Skip to main content


Canada, 1973 (MIFF 1974)

Director: Donald Shebib

Originally titled Get Back, this Canadian film, directed by Donald Shebib, explores the tensions and rivalries between members of a gang planning an armed robbery. Five people come together to carry out the crime, but dissension, sexual intrigue and even death break up the partnership.

Will and Coker work in a nickel smelting plant north of Toronto, where they plan to snatch the payroll. Their group includes Ellie, Will's daughter, her boy-friend Chino, and a friend of his, Toby, who drifts in from surf-board riding in California. Immediately, though, things start to go wrong. The hero falls in love with his friend's girl; the old man, Coker, dies, and a feud develops between the two young men.

But the four of them stick to their original plan, despite the pressures that have broken the group apart. So their attempt at a final solution moves into its last, desperate act.

'There are several superlative performances; Shebib and his scriptwriter further flesh out the crime-doesn't-pay formula by allowing their small-time hoods to function only as individuals, and by treating their quirks and foibles with a rare degree of unsentimental humanism; and the images of the snow-bound robbery transcend even the ending of Losey's The Criminal in their bleak, suggestive power.'

Jan Dawson, Sight and Sound

See also...


In Don Shebib's first film since Between Friends, he focuses on the life and career of a successful young stockbroker. Roger, who is thirty, has just been made vice-president of his brokerage firm ... More »


An experimental film in search of a new perception of reality. ... More »


Made from some sixty days and nights of filming of routine police work in Montreal, Station 10 is a view of life in the inner city that few ordinary citizens are likely to see in any other way. It is ... More »


Social workers in touch with youngsters on the streets, are called "Streetworkers" in Canada. The film shows them in action, and listens to their ideas about a positive approach to the problems of ... More »


The rat population of the world (estimated at one rat per man) is a constant danger to health. It spreads disease, contaminates our drinking water, our food. The film studies a colony of wild rats ... More »


This is an affectionate tribute to John Grierson, who founded and led the British documentary film movement in the Thirties, and who later established in Montreal, what grew into the largest ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director