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A Matter of Convenience (1987)

TV Movie  |  Comedy
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 17 users  
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Set and mainly shot on location in St Kilda of the late 1980s, this is a loving evocation of a time and environment that may have slipped away. Valma, verging on midlife, wants a baby with ... See full summary »



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Title: A Matter of Convenience (TV Movie 1987)

A Matter of Convenience (TV Movie 1987) on IMDb 7.5/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Alphonse Toronto
John Clarke ...
Joe McGuiness
Kym Amad ...
Dalibor Satalic ...
Adriana Frosi-Petersen ...
Mrs. Toronto
Cliff Ellen ...
Chicken Man
Nick Lathouris ...
Tom Galacci (as Nicos Lathouris)
Marion Heathfield ...
Stephen Parratt ...
Kirk Alexander ...
Registrar 1
Peter Hosking ...
Registrar 2
Roger Purvis
Stephen Scully ...
(as Stephen Sculley)
George Kapiniaris


Set and mainly shot on location in St Kilda of the late 1980s, this is a loving evocation of a time and environment that may have slipped away. Valma, verging on midlife, wants a baby with her partner Joe, who is a gentle, loving and well-meaning wannabe writer, but who has had absolutely no success in achieving self-sustainability, and is far from a good prospect as a reliable father. Even when he tries really hard, he finds himself in the job from hell ('a chicken factory? - is that where they make chickens?'). Alphonse is a 'businessman' who has 'a new business every year'. This year his main income comes from arranging 'marriages of convenience' ("when was marriage ever convenient??" - Alphonse) to help new immigrants fast-track to Australian residency and citizenship. Usually, Alphonse arranges 'marriages' between otherwise unmarriable immigrant women and gay Australian men - the latter because "there is no risk of funny business", and who are paid for their husbandry until the ... Written by jcarroll-5 (

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User Reviews

I love this movie - the players, the script, the setting - a pity it never went commercial.
26 October 2004 | by (Canberra, Australia) – See all my reviews

If you've seen Peter Weir's "Green Card" (1990) then you've heard the story; there is a lot of similarity between the two films. But in my view, Ben Lewin's (Lewin = some Ally McBeal episodes) earlier movie is meatier in every way. And I am really pleased that it's set in St Kilda and understands that district. Debra-Lee Furness ("Shame") is impressive as Valma - you can see why Hugh Jackman got involved - and John Clarke, a NZ-origin funnyman with a very very very dry sense of humour well-known on Oz TV (eg. "The Games" 2000), is perfect as her hopeless lifemate Joe. His chicken-factory sequence is brilliant, it almost made me a Vegan. Jean-Pierre Cassell, the marriage broker, appeared opposite Jean Seberg in "The Five Day Lover" about 1967 - it was interesting to see him playing a similarly sleazy character 20 years on, but hair-challenged. The two DIMA (INS to you across the water) officials are just right as red-tape-bureaucrats-with-a-heart. If you can find this movie, see it. If you can't, put some pressure on the producer, Noel Price, to get it out there.

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