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Exploring Surviving the Outback

"Surviving the Outback" is a thrilling journey of survival, resilience and adventure, recreating a historical event to test the limits of human endurance.

Keywords: Survival, Australian Outback, Adventure, History, Skill Test, German Aviators, 1932, Michael Atkinson, Stranded, Civilisation, Documentary. Three words: Survival, Adventure, History

"Surviving the Outback" is an engaging documentary directed by Michael Atkinson and released in 2018. The film follows Atkinson as he places himself in the historic predicament of two stranded German aviators in 1932. The objective is to see if his skills as a survival instructor, pilot, and adventurer will allow him to escape to the nearest civilisation.


The documentary takes the audience on an intense journey as Michael Atkinson pushes his survival skills to the limit. He ventures into the harsh Australian Outback, replicating the dangerous situation faced by two German aviators who found themselves stranded there in 1932. With limited resources and the vast, unforgiving wilderness ahead, Atkinson's quest to reach civilisation is filled with trials and tribulations.

More Film Analysis

"Surviving the Outback" leaves no stone unturned in its exploration of survival tactics. The documentary delivers a deep dive into the practical skills needed to survive in such conditions, while also showcasing the psychological endurance required. The film is well-researched, with Atkinson thoroughly studying the predicament of the German aviators to accurately relive their experience.

Historical and Factual Context

The documentary is based on the true story of German aviators Hans Bertram and Adolph Klausmann, who were stranded in the Australian wilderness for over a month in 1932. Their aircraft had to make an emergency landing, leaving them to survive in the harsh conditions of the Kimberley region in Western Australia.

Key themes in the film

  • Survival in harsh conditions
  • Adventure and exploration
  • Resilience and determination
  • Historical reenactment

Film Comparisons

"Surviving the Outback" could be compared to other survival documentaries like "Into The Wild" or "127 Hours". However, its unique angle of recreating a historical event sets it apart.

Noteworthy Moments

One of the most memorable moments in the documentary is when Atkinson manages to make a fire using primitive methods, demonstrating the importance and difficulty of this basic survival skill.


"Surviving the Outback" has been well received by audiences and critics alike. With an impressive IMDB rating of 7.9, viewers have praised the film for its gripping narrative and insightful look into survival tactics.


"Surviving the Outback" is a must-watch for adventure enthusiasts, history buffs, and anyone interested in survival stories. It's a thrilling documentary that demonstrates the human spirit's resilience and resourcefulness in the face of adversity.

More film information:


  • IMDB score: 7.9
  • Rotten Tomatoes score: N/A
  • Metacritic score: N/A
  • Film festival awards: N/A



  • Michael Atkinson: Survival Instructor, Pilot, Adventurer and Director of the film.



  • Australian Outback – Kimberley region in Western Australia

Key Questions Raised by the Film:

  • What are the essential skills needed for survival in harsh conditions?
  • What can historical survival stories teach us about resilience and determination?
  • How does the human spirit cope in the face of extreme adversity?

I wonder what the film would be in another art form

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  1. If this film was a famous book, it would be "Robinson Crusoe" by Daniel Defoe – a tale of survival and resourcefulness.
  2. If this film was a famous song, it would be "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor – a testament to resilience.
  3. If this film was a famous piece of art, it would be "The Persistence of Memory" by Salvador Dali – symbolising the passage of time in a barren landscape.
  4. If this film was a famous celebrity, it would be Bear Grylls – known for his survival skills.
  5. If this film was a color, it would be the rusty red of the Australian Outback.
  6. If this film was a music style, it would be rock – representing the ruggedness and raw emotion of survival.