Film & TV

Interview: Australian director Gregor Jordan on adapting Tim Winton’s Dirt Music and how the global pandemic is altering the industry

May 21, 2020

  The latest film from acclaimed Australian director Gregor Jordan (Two Hands, Ned Kelly), Dirt Music is a gritty, sexy drama with a haunting love story at its heart set against the powerful backdrop of Western Australia’s evocative landscape.  Based on the novel by Tim Winton, the cinematic adaptation will be coming to Australian cinemas […]

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Film Review: Hearts and Bones – Hugo Weaving shines in tender Australian drama

May 21, 2020

The dynamic relationship people share with personal trauma is examined in this emotionally complex and sensitively written debut feature by Australian filmmaker Ben Lawrence. Memories and the role they play in our lives sits at the core of Hearts and Bones, giving Lawrence and co-writer Beatrix Christian plenty of tough, poignant material to work with […]

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Film Review: The Assistant is uncomfortable but necessary viewing

May 19, 2020

Though disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein does not physically appear in The Assistant, nor does his likeness or even his name, this quietly disturbing drama from Australian filmmaker Kitty Green very much has him in mind. There’s a humiliation and systemic mentality that rings true throughout the film’s brisk 85 minute running time as it […]

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Is David Spade Netflix comedy The Wrong Missy worth watching?

May 18, 2020

The latest film to be trotted out onto Netflix’s new rotation is The Wrong Missy. Straight up, you should know that this project comes courtesy of Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison Productions team, so that might immediately throw up some questionable flags to begin with. Bankrolled by the streaming giant, predominantly set in Hawaii (presumably as […]

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Caliphate Netflix

Is Netflix’s Caliphate worth watching?

May 18, 2020

Streaming on Netflix now, Caliphate is an eight-episode thriller shot between Sweden and Jordan, following a planned ISIS terror plot in Stockholm while at the same time examining the much deeper issue of radicalisation. With a long-running show like Homeland wrapping up (rather well, might I add) after eight seasons, it’s expected that some fans […]

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Joker, 1917, Ford v Ferrari and more digital downloads are $5 right now

May 15, 2020

If you don’t want to play the waiting game and count the days before the likes of Joker and 1917 hit streaming services than this week is going to be good to you. For the next few days, from now until Wednesday 20th May, a digital download frenzy called Mega Movie Week is on, slashing […]

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Review: HBO’s new film Bad Education is “the most Australian movie about Long Island ever made”

May 14, 2020

The newest feature film for us to enjoy from the company of our own homes during isolation is one that was never acquired for big screen distribution. Coming from HBO Films (following the largest acquisition deal of the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival), Bad Education is the dramatised telling of a true story of corruption […]

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MIFF introduce Digital Film Festival 68½

May 7, 2020

In the face of the global disruption to the entertainment market, the film industry is finding new and innovative ways to keep cinema enthusiasts connected, and today the Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) announced MIFF 68½ – a reimagined celebration of film online. Following the festival’s cancellation, MIFF Artistic Director Al Cossar and his team […]

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First Impressions: Netflix’s second season of Dead To Me continues to complement its comedic personality with a wealth of emotion

May 7, 2020

*This review will contain spoilers pertaining to Dead To Me’s first season* It goes without saying that if you haven’t finished season one of Netflix’s deliciously comedic Dead To Me (or watched it all, shame on you if so), this second season is not for you to play catch up.  And after the unexpected note […]

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Film Review: Assume the position and get ready for a wild ride with Butt Boy

May 7, 2020

Don’t be put off by the title! Butt Boy tells the story of Chip Gutchel (Tyler Cornack, also performing double duty in the director’s chair), a bored IT engineer, who has a reawakening after a routine prostrate exam. Some harmless anal pleasure grows into a dangerous addiction, as he becomes responsible for a missing child. […]

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Is Alex Garland’s high concept sci-fi thriller Devs worth watching?

May 7, 2020

Devs is the sort of television mini-series that demands your full attention. This is for a couple of reasons. The first being that the subject matter of deterministic universes and philosophical questions of free will are topics that will leave you in deep thought long after the show ends. The second being that this show […]

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Film Review: 1983’s Ozploitation classic Hostage is little more than a Lifetime movie with sporadic moments of exploitation thrown in

May 5, 2020

Given the fact that Hostage has something of a reputation for being one of Australia’s biggest Ozploitation films, you’d be forgiven for assuming it would live up to its supposed status.  And whilst the opening credits suggest the film to come will be one heavy on uncomfortable violence – there are sudden, furious flashes of […]

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TV Review: Amazon Prime Video’s Upload is a thought-provoking comedy on the realities of the afterlife

May 1, 2020

As easy as it is to compare Upload to a program such as The Good Place – given that both series’ deal with the afterlife – Greg Daniels‘ romantic-comedy-cum-mystery is more a commentary on capitalism, a topic it tackles as successfully as it does ineffectually. Set in the not-too distant future (2033, to be exact), […]

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Film Review: The Flood overcomes its melodramatic narrative thanks to topical sensitivity

May 1, 2020

The opening scrawl of The Flood states that at least 18,000 people who have been displaced by persecution, conflict and violence in their own habitats around the world have died in the last 5 years alone in their bid to reach Europe.  It’s a shocking statistic regarding those trying to enter another country, but in […]

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Travel by Taste: 11 food shows on Netflix to binge through

April 28, 2020

Although we’re currently unable to head on out to a far-flung destination and indulge ourselves in local flavours, we’ve still got ‘armchair travel’. Whether you’re glued to the TV or cooking up a recipe in the kitchen, using your senses to immerse yourself in another culture, as vividly as possible, is the closest we can […]

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Sydney Film Festival joins major film festivals across the world for We Are One: A Global Film Festival

April 28, 2020

Tribeca Enterprises and YouTube jointly announced today We Are One: A Global Film Festival, an unprecedented 10-day digital film festival exclusively on YouTube, bringing together an international community of storytellers to present festival programming for free to audiences around the world. Set to begin on May 29 on YouTube.com/WeAreOne, the festival will feature programming curated by […]

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Is the new Netflix film Extraction starring Chris Hemsworth worth watching?

April 26, 2020

Extraction sees Aussie Chris Hemworth team up with writer Joe Russo (of the Russo Brothers) and debut director Sam Hargrave for a brutal and bloody action thriller for Netflix. This isn’t a unique story, it sees a teenage kid of a Mumbai drug lord get nabbed and held for ransom by an opposing drug lord. […]

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4K Ultra HD Review: 1917 is visually spectacular and undoubtedly a polished feat of filmmaking craft

April 22, 2020

Given 1917‘s rather simplistic plot – a pair of infantrymen having to cross the treacherous No Man’s Land in order to prevent a doomed attack during the height of World War 1 – it makes sense that director Sam Mendes (Skyfall) would opt for a more complex manner to detail the story.  Single camera shots […]

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TV Review: The Chosen is a faith-based series that deepens with interest the further it goes along

April 16, 2020

I’ll admit that faith-based material isn’t always the most attractive prospect for me.  Sure, you have your Last Temptation of Christ‘s and your Passion of the Christ‘s, but His story is one that doesn’t particularly entice me; most likely born from my personal relation to religion as a whole. That being said I certainly won’t […]

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Film Review: Come As You Are provides the jolt the road-trip-comedy model so desperately needs

April 13, 2020

Though the blueprint behind Come As You Are is quite insultingly familiar – three sexually-charged men on a road trip that’s as heavy on situational humour as it is on their own self-discovery – director Richard Wong proves that appearances are indeed deceiving. The core structures of the road-trip-comedy are in place, but Come As […]

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Tribeca Film Festival Review: A Better You is a charming, self-reflective look on the social-media age

April 8, 2020

*Due to the current global crisis the planned 2020 Tribeca Film Festival has been postponed. The AU Review has been in contact with the respective representatives for available films in order to give them the coverage they intended. A commentary on the so-called perfection of social media, Eamonn Murphy‘s quirky short A Better You is […]

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Parasite

Bong Joon-ho’s award-winning Parasite is out this weekend on Stan

April 7, 2020

Months ahead of its originally slated streaming release date, four-time Oscar winner Parasite has been bumped up Stan’s schedule and arrives in just a few days. For those who are yet to see what the hype is about, Bong Joon-ho’s history-making tragicomedy will be available on Stan (in all its 4K glory) from Easter Saturday, […]

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Tribeca Film Festival Review: Query addresses the social norms of sexuality in a disarmingly comfortable manner

April 5, 2020

*Due to the current global crisis the planned 2020 Tribeca Film Festival has been postponed. The AU Review has been in contact with the respective representatives for available films in order to give them the coverage they intended. Much like the recent slate of short films that were intended for this year’s SXSW Film Festival, […]

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Film Review: Almost Love (aka Sell By) overcomes genre unoriginality with a strong ensemble and an honest voice

April 3, 2020

Best not to be fooled by Almost Love‘s incredibly generic title (its alternative UK/international moniker Sell By isn’t much better either) as Mike Doyle‘s interconnected relationship drama plays stronger than it deserves to, thanks in large part to an ensemble cast that are allowed to play to and with their own respective strengths. Set in […]

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12 things we learned from the Star Wars Episode IX feature length documentary, The Skywalker Legacy

April 1, 2020

With each Star Wars film in the latest trilogy, fans have been treated to a feature length documentary about the making of the film, alongside its home release. They have surprisingly honest and detailed, in particular The Director and The Jedi, which took time to address some of the backlash Episode VIII received. The latest […]

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Come To Daddy

Film Review: Come To Daddy is a pitch black comedic thriller bathed in gory oddity

March 30, 2020

If we have learnt anything throughout cinema’s depictions of estranged families, it’s that the more alienated you are from one another, the more unpredictable your journey will be. This proves especially true in Come To Daddy, a pitch black comedic thriller that director Ant Timpson bathes in gory oddity. There’s an unease immediately present from […]

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First Impressions: Shudder’s Cursed Films should satisfy those that appreciate horror as both a genre and a temperament

March 27, 2020

As horrific as some things are on screen, behind the cameras can be even worse.  Supernatural forces at bay have proven to be more than just fictional fodder if the lore of horror set stories are anything to go by, and Shudder’s own Cursed Films docu-series sets out to prove whether it’s fact or fiction […]

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Interview: The Skywalker Legacy Director talks about capturing the magic of Star Wars Episode IX

March 26, 2020

Last week I caught up with Director Debs Paterson, who was tasked the monumental duty of documenting everything that happened during the 7 months of filming Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker. The result is the two hour documentary The Skywalker Legacy, that accompanies the home release of the film (on digital now […]

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Film Review: Swallow is a slow-burning thriller that transcends its potentially nauseating premise

March 22, 2020

On paper, the premise for Swallow sounds almost too-grotesque to be relayed without resorting to some type of gimmick.  In reality, Carlo Mirabella-Davis‘s slow-burning thriller transcends its potentially nauseating core to deliver a deep, at times dark tale that wholly understands and respects its unique subject matter. The film surrounds the delicate Hunter (Haley Bennett), […]

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SXSW Film Review: Make Up is a self-discovery tale dressed up like a psychological thriller

March 20, 2020

*The AU Review will continue with its planned SXSW 2020 coverage.  We have been in contact with the respective representatives for available films in order to give them the coverage they intended. Perhaps diving a little too heavily into the metaphorical stance on storytelling, Claire Oakley‘s Make Up is a self-discovery tale dressed up like […]

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