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Goin' Down the Road
IMDB Rating: 7.5/10 from 657 votes
Release: 3 February 1972 (Hungary) /

Goin' Down the Road

Genre: Action, Drama, Foreign
Director: Donald Shebib,
Stars: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Synopsis: Story of desolation as two friends travel from Nova Scotia to Toronto in hope of finding a better life. Drifting from job to job: bottling plant, car wash, bowling alley, newspaper delivery, and in between enjoying the night life of the big city. Their previous life is looking better all the time. This movie is a time capsule of Toronto's Yonge Street - record stores (defunct A&A's), bars, and old neighbourhood side streets. Written by Sven Kahrkling <[email protected]>

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Critic Reviews


I first saw this movie about 25 years ago and was absolutely struck by it's authentic feel. I'm about the same age as the 2 main actors, Doug McGrath and Paul Bradley and although I was born in Ontario, I clearly recall the tremendous influx of 18 - 25 year old men from Newfoundland and Nova Scotia during the 60s and 70s. I worked with several of them and as far as they were concerned, Ontario was the promised land. When they arrived, they were invariably stunned by the promise of it all. High wages, new cars, nice clothes, bright lights, and parties. Everything a boy from the pastoral East coast of Canada dreams of. They loved it all and were about the most friendly people you could ever hope to meet. They worked hard and loved to party.

At times, it was like there was a revolving door between Ontario and the Maritimes. Some of these young men were as steady as rocks and were destined to stay, marry, have children and live out their lives in Ontario. Others were impatient and quickly grew disillusioned. They'd simply pack up and move further West to the next new promised land, British Columbia. Still others came to Ontario with dreams of wealth and standing that they felt they could never attain in the Maritimes. When the dream failed to materialize, they returned to their East Coast homes, disappointed but happy that they gave it a try.

In retrospect, it was like I was caught in the center of a huge social experiment. The wave of young men from the maritimes came unexpectedly in the early 60s and and disappeared just as quickly in the early 70s. It was a period of global readjustment and personal introspection. People wanted to see if there was something more and went out to find it.

When I first happened upon this movie, I thought I was watching a documentary. It has the look and feel of a documentary and this effect is reinforced by the actors who deliver their lines in a manner that seems unrehearsed. The movie is a totally and completely accurate portrayal of the fate that met many young male adventurers from the maritimes.

This is a good movie. It shows up every few months in the wee hours of the morning. The next time you see the title, turn it on a prepare for an interesting trek through the social and cultural landscape of the 1960s.

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