true story

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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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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SXSW Film Review: Shooting Heroin is a noble idea marred by melodramatics

March 17, 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. A noble idea marred by melodramatics that often take away the importance of the film’s message, Shooting Heroin can’t help but feel like […]

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Seberg

Film Review: Kristen Stewart’s commanding performance overcomes Seberg‘s narrative flaws

January 29, 2020

Only one week after elevating the B-grade material of deep-sea thriller Underwater, Kristen Stewart further proves her innate ability of hoisting what little she has to work with on a script page to something of sublime quality in Seberg.  A biographical drama detailing a specific time period in the life of American actress Jean Seberg […]

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Film Review: Judy is as heartbreaking as it is joyous

October 11, 2019

There’s at least one Oscar-grab movie released every year designed with the intent on pushing its lead performer to the front of the nominee queue.  Judy appears to be that movie for 2019.  And that’s certainly not a criticism against the film as it’s a fine biopic in its own right, but Renee Zellweger‘s dedicated […]

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Film Review: Red Joan sadly fails to ignite its potential

June 5, 2019

For a movie based on a true story about an elderly British woman revealed to be a long-term spy for the Russians, one headlined by the ever-reliable Judi Dench, Red Joan sadly fails to ignite its potential. Based on a novel inspired by Melita Norwood (dubbed “The Granny Spy”), who was both a British civil […]

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Film Review: The Mule (USA, 2018) is a middle-ground effort from Clint Eastwood

January 22, 2019

Given that this is Clint Eastwood‘s first starring role in six years (his last being 2012’s under-the-radar sports drama The Trouble With the Curve), one would be forgiven for expecting something far more grand and notable than what is ultimately on offer; its push into prime Oscar season releases not helping matters either. Whilst this […]

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Film Review: In Like Flynn (Australia, 2018) is predominantly fizzy and shamelessly cheesy

October 10, 2018

Director Russell Mulcahy, the Melbourne filmmaker whose career has seen him graduate from Elton John music videos to varied levels of cinematic quality (the 1984 wild boar in the outback horror flick Razorback, the ill-advised Kim Basinger vehicle The Real McCoy, and the Geoffrey Rush drama Swimming Upstream just a few of his efforts) is […]

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Film Review: Damien Chazelle has crafted something truly impeccable with First Man (USA, 2018)

October 8, 2018

It seems almost baffling that Neil Armstrong’s account of being the first man on the moon hasn’t been told prior to Damien Chazelle‘s First Man.  Clearly an intimidating figure but still reserved, sensitive and aloof enough to not be placed upon a pedestal as some flawless being, Chazelle’s film seeks to uncover the more human […]

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Film Review: 12 Strong (USA, 2018) is as dynamic as it is earnest

March 7, 2018

Depending how you look at it, 12 Strong‘s insistence on bypassing the usual heavy-handed political messages and overt emotional punches that pertain to war genre films will either be a welcome or rejected additive.  It’s a film that’s pretty standard (at least in comparison to genre greats like Saving Private Ryan and Black Hawk Down), […]

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Film Review: American Made (USA, 2017) is a sharply paced outing that proves a welcome return to form for Tom Cruise

August 17, 2017

Simultaneously stepping away from the action brands they’re both primarily recognised for, there’s a sense of material re-engagement for director Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Edge of Tomorrow) and star Tom Cruise with American Made.  Telling a story that’s less reliant on aesthetic spectacle and star power, Gary Spinelli’s account of […]

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Film Review: The Founder (M15+) (USA, 2016) is an intriguing drama benefitting from Michael Keaton’s performance

November 24, 2016

Likely to come as a surprise to many that The Founder is less a success story regarding the origins of McDonalds, but more a tale on greed and the value of real estate, John Lee Hancock‘s engaging drama benefits from its stellar central performance from Michael Keaton, continuing the run he so assuredly began with […]

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