Film

TIFF Review: Director Francois Ozon returns to his roots with Summer of 85

September 24, 2020

Queer cinema has come through quite well over these past few years. We have had great examples like Call Me By Your Name, Love, Simon and Moonlight; foreign entries like BPM (Beats Per Minute), the Oscar-winning A Fantastic Woman and BAFTA-winning The Handmaiden and hidden indie gems like Princess Cyd, Beach Rats and God’s Own Country. All of these films have had critical acclaim and they […]

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Interview: The Croods: A New Age director Joel Crawford on finally getting a sequel off the ground and the coup of the original cast returning

September 22, 2020

To coincide with the global trailer launch of the hotly anticipated sequel The Croods: A New Age, our own Peter Gray caught up with the film’s director, Joel Crawford, to discuss the coup of reuniting the original cast and furthering the emotional aspect of the original story. It must be nice to talk about a […]

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TIFF Review: Those who are adventurous horror seekers would do quite well with Violation

September 21, 2020

Trigger warning: Sexual abuse One of the reasons why cinema is so well received is that it can figuratively transport you into another world. In addition to that, it can be a way of wish fulfilment. Who wouldn’t want to be a kick-ass hero? Who would not want to be in a fairy tale romance? […]

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TIFF Review: Shadow in the Cloud is an exhilaratingly silly yet undeniably entertaining genre mashup from writer/director Roseanne Liang

September 21, 2020

Trigger warning: Sexual abuse and some coarse language Before we start off this review, let’s point out the elephant in the room. The film was co-written by Max Landis, who is now known for the various accusations of emotional and sexual abuse from eight separate women. Since then, lead actress Chloe Grace Moretz has said […]

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Queer Screen Film Fest Review: Cicada is a beautiful and tragic film that wisely doesn’t preach to its audience

September 19, 2020

Given how authentic this “based on real events” tale proves to be, it’s safe to assume that writer/director/actor Matthew Fifer is baring a healthy portion of his soul and experiences in Cicada.  Likely to ring true with queer audiences – especially gay men – the film tackles uncomfortable subjects and presents promiscuous sex in an […]

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Queer Screen Film Fest Review: Stage Mother is an entertaining yet forgettable affair

September 18, 2020

In 2020, a movie detailing the drag scene and the straight Texan mother who comes to embrace it following the death of her queer son should be something worth remembering.  Even more so when said mother is portrayed by a seasoned performer like Jacki Weaver.  Sadly, as well-intentioned as Stage Mother is, it’s a forgettable […]

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TIFF Review: The magnificently mesmerizing Wolfwalkers will have audiences howling with joy

September 18, 2020

Whenever one thinks of animation studios, the main ones one would think of would be either Disney and Pixar from the West and Studio Ghibli overseas. Then on the lesser known side, there would be studios like Laika and Aardman studios. But there is one that is even more obscure and that is called the […]

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TIFF Review: Pieces of a Woman is a moving drama and stellar acting showcase for Vanessa Kirby and Ellen Burstyn

September 18, 2020

The filmography of playwright/director Kornel Mundruczo is quite interesting from a first glimpse. The standout feature is the fact that his works are usually political parables disguised as genre fare. His last two films White God and Jupiter’s Moon delved into the horror/sci-fi genre but were more about the examination of the inner workings of […]

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TIFF Review: Naomi Watts is the best thing in the underwhelming Penguin Bloom

September 17, 2020

Penguin Bloom follows the story of the Bloom family, a happy and adventurous troupe who are led on many treks by the outgoing matriarch Sam (Naomi Watts). All appears well as they are holidaying in Thailand until a once-in-a-lifetime accident occurs; leaving Sam paralysed and confined to a wheelchair.  Seen as a shadow of her former […]

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Disney and Disney+ are gearing up for your attention in the last months of 2020

September 16, 2020

  News coming out of the House of Mouse has been coming pretty thick and fast as we near closer and closer to the end of the year. So we’re going to distil down some of the key things to keep a lookout for as we edge closer to 2021. We’ve picked out a handful […]

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Film Review: The Secrets We Keep is a thought-provoking examination on the aftermath of violence

September 16, 2020

Whilst Yuval Adler‘s The Secrets We Keep has quite a nasty temperament, it’s a testament to his and Ryan Covington‘s script that it never overindulges in its wince-worthy material. Set in a post-WWII America where the horrors of Nazi camps and prisoner brutality are a distant though still painful memory, Maja (Noomi Rapace), a Romani […]

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TIFF Review: Shiva Baby is one of the funniest films of 2020

September 15, 2020

Rachel Sennott stars as Danielle, a young bisexual Jewish woman, traipsing through life going through a phase of self-defeat as she essentially performs sex work for money; all under the guise of sexual empowerment excused by her gender studies degree. The mindset of Danielle is set up in a succinctly and hilariously tired fashion as she has sex with her […]

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Film Review: Trolls World Tour‘s sunny disposition is just what families need during these uncertain times

September 14, 2020

Prior to COVID-19 taking a hold of the industry in a capacity the world was unprepared for, Trolls World Tour was primed for a first quarter release – hell, Sydney was even planning a premiere with director Walt Dohrn and star Anna Kendrick in attendance – ready to capitalise on the somewhat-unexpected success of the […]

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TIFF Review: Get the Hell Out is an exhausting yet ultimately amusing zombie horror comedy

September 13, 2020

There are genre conventions that we see all the time in film that whenever they show up, we cannot help but smile at the sight of it. One of them is seeing the hero succeed in their journey; another is seeing the protagonist triumph over oppression and adversity and another is seeing a zombie getting […]

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TIFF Review: A Good Man is an empathetic and understanding look into the life of a trans man wanting to have a child

September 13, 2020

When news of the latest project by writer/director Marie-Castille Mention-Scharr was announced, this reviewer was intrigued yet quite trepidacious [sic]. The premise of the story itself is inspiring but the casting of the titular role can be seen as quite problematic. The major reason for being is because of the lack of proper representation for […]

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TIFF Review: One Night in Miami is an electrifying film directorial debut for Regina King

September 12, 2020

In America 1964, the audience is introduced with its four main players. Renowned boxer Cassius Clay (Eli Goree) had just defeated Sonny Liston to become heavyweight champion of the world; Muslim minister and human rights activist Malcolm X (Kingsley Ben-Adir) is still fighting for the cause for Black people; pop musician Sam Cooke (Leslie Odom […]

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TIFF Review: Holler is a remarkable coming-of-age drama and directorial debut from Nicole Riegel

September 11, 2020

Jessica Barden stars as Ruth Avery, a high school student who lives in Jackson, Ohio with her older brother Blaze (Gus Halper). She is intelligent and resilient but due to her living conditions, she is looked down upon by people at school to the point that she has to resort to stealing books (i.e. Madame […]

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Interview: Director Christopher Landon on his Freaky new film, the Happy Death Day franchise, and injecting humanity into the horror genre

September 11, 2020

  As the trailer for Christopher Landon‘s body-swap horror-comedy Freaky premieres across the globe, The AU Review’s Peter Gray was fortunate enough to chat with the director, touching on the casting of Vince Vaughn and Kathryn Newton, his love of the horror genre, and if we can expect a third Happy Death Day. After seeing […]

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Film production set to ramp up in Australia as Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis gets underway in Queensland

September 10, 2020

“We’re back to, as Elvis liked to say, ‘taking care of business’”. And with that statement, Oscar-nominated director Baz Luhrmann once again controls the reins of Elvis, a musical drama detailing the life and music of the iconic Elvis Presley. After an unexpected delay in filming due to the unprecedented world events, cameras will roll […]

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The 2020 Queer Screen Film Festival goes online

September 8, 2020

This year’s annual Queer Screen Film Festival, the little sister to February’s Mardi Gras Film Festival, will be held entirely online, allowing for anyone across the country to join the celebration. Running across 11 days from Thursday 17 September to Sunday 27 September, this year’s program features over 40 feature films, documentaries and shorts. With […]

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Film Review: Bill & Ted Face the Music is a genuinely joyous slice of nostalgia that proves worth the wait for long-standing fans

September 8, 2020

As someone who was a kid when the first two Bill & Ted films were released (Excellent Adventure in 1989, Bogus Journey in 1991), and watched them on a regular basis throughout my childhood, I’m very much in the target demographic for the unexpected sequel that is Bill & Ted Face the Music.  As 1980’s-leaning […]

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Film Review: Buffaloed is a vehicle for Zoey Deutch’s star quality and infectious enthusiasm

September 7, 2020

Zoey Deutch is a star, and as her infectious enthusiasm and penchant for live-wire-fuelled comedy proves in Buffaloed, the world is simply waiting to catch up to her.  In the same manner as someone like Anna Kendrick, Deutch does so much with so little, going-for-broke with a fearlessness that often elevates both the material she’s […]

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Film Review: The New Mutants is painfully full of dialogue and not enough horror scares

September 4, 2020

The New Mutants was going to be Fox’s attempt at re-invigorating the X-Men franchise, or at least, it probably was before it got bogged in production issues and a merger with Disney. The film, now released some two years later, gets dropped into cinemas whilst a pandemic is happening, which is probably a metaphor for […]

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The mission that changes everything begins in latest No Time To Die trailer

September 4, 2020

There’s been a bit of radio silence on the 007 front ever since No Time To Die was one of the first major studio releases to react to the coronavirus pandemic and shifted its original April release to November 2020.  Now that the film’s local November 12th date seems locked and loaded, the promotional trail […]

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Film Review: Mulan opts to be more than just a carbon copy of its animated counterpart

September 4, 2020

Given that the character of Hua Mulan has long been one depicted in poetry, novels, and film for almost as long as she has been a Chinese folklore figure, it’s wiser to view Mulan as another variation of her story, rather than a direct remake of Disney’s 1998 animated favourite. Whereas recent Disney live-action overhauls […]

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Film Review: The Eight Hundred is at once a distinctive yet conventional entrant in the war film genre

August 31, 2020

We’re twenty minutes into Hu Guan‘s epic The Eight Hundred before the credits cease on screen.  Then the film informs us that we are on Day 1 of what is to be a four-day siege – not to mention a further 2 hours in its running time. The titular Eight Hundred refers to the 400 […]

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Photo Gallery: The Sydney Premiere of TENET is Australia’s First Covid-19 Red Carpet

August 31, 2020

Welcome to “the new normal”! United Cinemas at Sydney’s Circular Quay hosted Australia’s first socially distance Red Carpet movie premiere with the screening of Christopher Nolan’s blockbuster TENET. Imogen Anthony walked the Red Carpet with local celebrities from Married At First Sight, Love Island and The Bachelor. Nathan Atkins was there to capture the guests.

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Win a DVD set of the complete series of Schitt’s Creek

August 27, 2020

Out this week through Acorn Media, you can now enjoy the entire hilarious Canadian series Schitt’s Creek thanks to a jam packed 12 disc DVD box set. That’s no less than 80 episodes across 6 seasons, from the award winning, critically acclaimed and much loved show that stars Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara (who in […]

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Win a double pass to see Bill & Ted Face The Music in Australian cinemas

August 26, 2020

We have ten double passes to give away to the upcoming release of the third film in the classic and hilarious Bill & Ted film series – Bill & Ted Face The Music – starring Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves as the titular characters. After a brief delay due to cinema shutdowns, it’s one of […]

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Film Review: Tenet is an ambitious, visually stunning, inherently interesting, mind-numbingly confusing tale

August 22, 2020

There’s a scene relatively early in Christopher Nolan‘s ambitious time-bending actioner Tenet where Clemence Poesey is explaining to John David Washington‘s confused character – known only as The Protagonist – about the supposed science behind his forthcoming operation; “Don’t try to understand it” she assuredly states. And it’s that advice that audiences best take when […]

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