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d-JCB

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22 reviews in total 
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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
A haunting tale of Australian history..., 17 March 2015
8/10

Gallipoli (TV series) (2015) - Glendyn Ivin

8/10

fantastic Aussie series directed by the talented Glendyn Ivin & written by Christopher Lee, stepping up to the plate with quality story telling, cinematography & production values up to the international standards… this is not a patriot story, this is a brutal recall of events that happened at Gallipoli in 1915 focusing on 4 young Aussie boys who enlisted to fight the Turks alongside the British, Kiwis, French & Indians… what unravels is an 8 month campaign of death, struggle, sickness, blistering heat & ice cold winter…

throughout there's a lot of humanity shown within the young Anzac's right up to the commanding officers, even with what seems like impossible odds to overthrow the Turks & get to higher ground… with over 80000 casualties, even more from the Turkish side, the beautiful landscape is the setting for a bloody battlefield that seems to never end or with much progress, until the last body drops to the ground …

it was great to see this story told in such a bold manner, with an amazing score by Stephen Rae, stunning cinematography by Germain McMicking & brilliant performances across the board, especially the leads Kodi Smit-McPhee, Nicholas Hope & Harry Greenwood, this is a tour De force of our nations history, something that we all should remember or should i say "lest we forget"… a haunting tale that all Aussies should embrace as a reminder of what the diggers sacrificed for our nation & the king of England…

props goes to all the local involved i know who helped make this such an amazing series Anthony Littlechild Thomas Formosa-Doyle Kat Schachte Lee Norris Robert Connolly Chris Hocking Emma Bortignon

Leviathan (2014)
stunning & brutally honest masterpiece from the heart of Russia..., 17 March 2015
9/10

Leviathan (2014) - Andrey Zvyagintsev

9-10/10 & added to my best of 2014 list, top 5 for the year + my masterpiece collection list…

this film played at Cannes and for the fortunate people who saw it there, the buzz was amazing at the festival… it did pickup "Best Screenplay" at Cannes, "Best Foreign Language Film" at the Golden Globes & will most likely win "Best Foreign Language Film" at the Oscars tomorrow night…

This is a very Russian story, from what I've witnessed & speaking with Russian friend Anastasia who saw it at Cannes… but it's the kind of story the Russian government wouldn't like to be released cause it puts the corruption on display for the world to see. This story focuses on a small sea side town in Russia where the mayor is taking over the property of a local who build the house himself 30 years ago… it's a class war where if you are nobody of power, you get trampled, and in this case with a brutal conclusion…

with stunning cinematography in this desolate environment, symbolizing the loss of hope in this small part of the world, whale carcasses beaches as apart of the landscape… you get a taste of local life here, where they go shooting for a traffic officer's birthday, shooting pictures of ex Russian leaders, stating that Putin is still too new, needs to ripen before he can be added to the list… there's interesting side stories of infidelity & by close a huge shift of trust within the community with a tragic event…

all encompassed with a score of works by Phillip Glass, this is a tour e force of a film, showing how evil & unforgiving some people are, the human condition is on show in full force, with all it's contradictory intricacies… one of the films of 2014 for sure, not many masterpieces released in 2014 but this film by Zvyagintsev, the rising voice in Russia proves there's a lot more top shelf quality to come!

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Yôji Yamada's remake of Ozu's Tokyo Story is a modern masterpiece of this classic Japanese story, 22 October 2014
9/10

9/10

watched an amazing film this morning… just when i was trying to get to sleep after another "up till sunrise" night… it's called Tokyo Family by Yôji Yamada, a tribute to legendary Japanese director Yasujirô Ozu and his most famous film, Tokyo Story from 1953… it's quite similar in idea, where older parents from a country sea side town come to Tokyo to visit their kids / grand kids, but no one really has time for them… Tokyo has this high paced way of living, while in the country the old folks just kick back and enjoy life go by…

the relationship between the father and son reminded me of my situation with dad who recently passed away - my personality & outlook in life is like mine while the fathers is like my dad… also there's a death in the film where the whole family has to go thru, very sudden like dad's circumstances…

it destroyed me, but in a good way cause it allowed be to grieve a bit more, cause I've been resisting it a bit since dad's funeral… it really is a heart breaking film, and like death it is hard for all family members to endure… in the film the funeral & wake were very beautiful, respectful… all the family got together like we all did… it finishes on a positive note that life must go on, the father becomes more accepting of the son & vice versa… thru this death in the family they break their stand off between each other and bond in their own unique way…

instant 9/10 & keen to watch it again… u should too, to see the contrasts between generations, traditions & cities… old times compared to modern times… something that will be timeless, just like Yamada modernising the Ozu 50s masterpiece with another masterpiece that will be also treasured for generations to come…

The Rover (2014)
Aussie post apocalyptic dark western delivers, 22 October 2014
7/10

7/10

been keen to watch David Michôd & Joel Edgerton's follow up to the amazing Animal Kingdom ever since i missed the screening at Cannes this year... with such mixed reports from the festival & once it was released locally i didn't know what to expect, so tried to go in with no expectations...

The Rover is a great Aussie film, which paints the picture of this desolate post apocalyptic landscape, people are shot with no second thought, food and doctors are protected with guns... the desperation is everywhere...

the dark pitch throughout just stays with you, sets a tone of tension & despair, the soundtrack is the perfect dark and moody companion along these dusty roads...

the cinematography is solid from Natasha Braier who steps up to fill Adam Arkapaw's shoes after his amazing effort shooting Animal Kingdom... her sparse and dark compositions suit this gritty outback...

Guy Pierce & Robert Pattinson's performance are on point! some of the best performances I've seen from both of these outstanding actors... Guy is quiet & brooding who only speaks when necessary, while Robert's character is a glitched out immigrant, maybe Irish, who's in deep trouble due to his brother's business dealings, which turn sour & setup this unexpected buddy film of sorts... but in no way is this a comedy, it's 2 people who want the same thing for different reasons... and the conclusion is intense... doesn't hold back on following through with this dark western of sorts...

7/10 for the moment but could go higher & added to my 2014 list. this is a solid film & recommend it for any film lovers, esp people who need to see that quality is still being produced...

3 out of 12 people found the following review useful:
Cronenberg is back in full force!!, 22 October 2014
9/10

my god has David Cronenberg returned to form... after his masterful rendition of the Don DeLillo novel Cosmopolis (2011), he's returned with a follow up film that could be some of his finest work & proving this genius isn't going to fade into obscurity...

the frantic script is a blessing by Bruce Wagner is full of fast paced dialog and satirical attitudes which reflect the golden era of Hollywood, a constant sense of unease but not as surreal as David Lynch's Mulholland Drive... showing u how repulsive Hollywood can be with it's vulgar characters and how they treat each other... the pace of the dialog & how the story shifts from confusion to outright darkness is something of a master stroke... the dark humour laid throughout this film is some of the the harshest I've heard... so offensively funny... but u wonder how much of these characters are based on fact - these attitudes, the outrageous comments & back stabbing...

it really is something... better than Cosmopolis cause of how dynamic the story & the twisting characters are... performances from Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, John Cusack, the oh so sexy Sarah Gadon (my god she is gorgeous!), and newcomer Evan Bird who steals the show...

it really is a tour de force of a film... i only wish i had the chance of seeing this at Cannes... cause it would've been great to discuss this dark yet hilariously twisted tale in detail... now ill patiently wait for you all to watch this, cause this film is a definite top contender for 2014!

Cronenberg has done it again, with 2 amazing films in a row... but i really wanna watch this one again before finalising my rating... overnight I've gone up to a 9 but it could easily go all the way...

another masterpiece from Australian master Peter Weir, 7 October 2014
9/10

as with Peter Weir's other masterpiece The Last Wave, it requires multiple viewings and lots of digestion time to fully grasp & appreciate... I've been wanting to watch Picnic at Hanging Rock for years... bought the blu ray recently & thought it was time... after finally watching it, I'm quite shell shocked at what I've just witnessed... the mood throughout this film is on a spiritual level, hypnotic at times, tension building below... the soundtrack & sound design compliment the film & create this mysticism surrounding the missing characters... the narrative is quite minimal, focusing on the mood of the film rather than what's being said... but quite often what is being said is cryptic & only leaves you with more questions...

after doing further reading, it is stated that even the novelist Joan Lindsay never confirmed if the story was based on fact or not... but many people including the producer of the film have gone to Hanging Rock & felt this unease... like they are being watched... this aspect to me is fascinating and makes this film such an achievement from the young director at the time... also worth mentioning that gorgeous the actress who played Sara, Margaret Nelson has been missing for sometime... plus the lead bitch of the school Mrs. Appleyard played by Rachel Roberts committed suicide in 1980... the more you dig with this film / novel and Hanging Rock the location, more is left unanswered...

it's most definitely one of the greatest Australian films & cant wait to see it again & give it 10/10, along with 2nd viewing of The Last Wave... until then ill be hunting down Mark Hartley's 2004 doco "A Dream Within a Dream: The making of 'Picnic at Hanging Rock" & continue my research on the film, the location, it's characters & the novelist...

Red Beard (1965)
one of the finest films on humanity & the art of compassion, 17 September 2014
10/10

this Akira Kurosawa film went under the radar for me, it was just another known Kurosawa film that i must see one day... watching it 2 days after my dad's funeral was actually perfect timing, cause of the theme's of death, compassion, empathy & the overall humanity of story really resonated with me... it made me even look at how i have been dealing with Dad's illness in the final weeks and raise questions of my own selfish behaviour... masterful actor Toshiro Mifune is the almost mystical wise Red Beard - the lead doctor in a small town full of peasants and generally lower class, where his presence affects everyone like a god... when his new apprentice comes to town who is full of ego & great ideas, not willing to obey Red Beard rules etc, the doctor fresh out of an acclaimed medical school has to learn some important lessons of life, and medical methods aren't in text books... unorthodox methods Red Beard teaches him to be connected with the patient and give them what they need for their soul which helps them either survive or pass away peacefully... one of the most touching films on humanity i've ever seen but without being sentimental... this film will stay with you long after watching it... after doing extended reading on this film and further thought, i pushed it up to 10/10 alongside other Kurosawa masterpieces like Ikiru and High & Low... there's still so much of his catalog i have to explore as well as re-watch (Seven Samurai, Sanjiro, Yojimbo for starters), this was his last film with his star actor Mifune but I'm slowly coming to grasp that Kurosawa has many masterpieces (not just a couple like most greats do) & one of the true greats of cinema...

2 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
a modern surrealist / existential masterpiece from Glazer - there's hope for cinema still!, 10 July 2014
9/10

9/10 - the best film I've seen in 2014... a surrealist / existential film by Jonathan Glazer, I aspire to write a feature similar to this and other recent film, Refn's "Only God Forgives" which encourages the idea of writing a surrealist film in these times more promising... a stripped back version of Michel Faber's 2000 novel, sci-fi of sorts but set in Scotland in modern times. id rather not give too much away cause it's better for the viewer to go in cold & experience it without any preconceptions, then decide how they feel, as this has divided audiences, just like how Kubrick's 2001 Space Odyssey did back in 68, same with Only God Forgives more recently... one thing can be said is there's not many films like this being made nowadays, i give Glazer serious props for doing so, and Scarlett for bringing such a strong performance, her best to date by a mile, Mica Levi's soundtrack is perfect to create the haunting mood of the film... this is not a 1 sitting film, it urges you to watch and re-watch it to discover more about it's ambiguities, abstractions & symbolism... and i cant wait to lock into this once again, this time at night with no distractions :)

9 out of 35 people found the following review useful:
compelling & analytical tale of sexual obsession, 3 April 2014
8/10

have to say that i was pleasantly surprised how compelling Lars von Trier's 4hr film on nymphomania was the other night... the film explores the topic of sex / lust / love in an analytical way, while keeping the actual acts of sex to an intensity level lower than Antichrist, tho there are some brutal moments of course... if anything this is a film that supports feminism by close, with female sexual liberty & how Charlotte Gainsbourg shares her addictive nature to Stellan Skarsgård throughout... Stellen's commentary on comparisons to sex and other topics is very effective to give the film a deeper look into how human behavior has many companions... this is LVT's most thought out / researched film as far as the content discussed goes, which makes this an educational experience as well as an erotic journey of sexual obsession - 8/10

the issue of aids medication in America, 4 March 2014
8/10

amazing performances and well deserved for Matthew McConaughey with Best Actor as Ron Woodroof - the rodeo sex / drug fueled charged cowboy with aids & Jared Leto with Best Supporting Actor as Rayon - the transvestite who teams up with Ron to start a drug supply for aids sufferers... also great performance from Jennifer Garner, first film I've seen her in considering her previous choices aren't to my taste...

well executed story showing how problematic the issue of aids suppressant drugs in the states. on a shoestring budget of $5.5M & shot in 25 days, this is a great feat of film making in these modern times where blockbusters dominate - 8/10


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