Can a bunch of cuckoos run a factory like clockwork' The efficiency expert finds out when he comes to the rescue of a cash-poor, family-run footware factory.
During the Sixties, a troubled British efficiency expert travels to Spotswood, a suburban Australian town, in order to improve productivity at an ailing moccasin factory. The company is owned by a sweet-natured old man who values his workers' happiness over bottom line profits, and as a result, he's quickly going out of business; only by selling off pieces of property over the last few years has he been able to show a profit. After making his observations, the visiting expert recommends sacking a great many of the employees in order to keep the company afloat. The owner reluctantly agrees and starts filling out pink slips, but the outsider begins to doubt his evaluations as he gets better acquainted with the friendly, fun-loving workers. He comes to realize that his decisions may be based on the manipulation of cold, hard figures -- but they affect the everyday lives of real human beings.
Shot in Eastmancolor; recorded in Dolby stereo; 97 minutes.
Rated MPAA PG.
Shown in the 1991 Cannes Film Festival Market.
Shot in Dolby Stereo.
"Spotswood" is Mark Joffe's second film. He started his career directing projects for Australian television, and debuted as a feature film director in 1988 with the thriller "Grievous Bodily Harm". Ellery Ryan was the Director of Photography on both of Joffe's films.
Actor Alwyn Kurts, who plays the genial factory owner, had already retired from performing when he returned to do this film.