Hot on the heels of last week’s UK release of Julius Avery’s heist thriller Son of a Gun, comes another Western Australian tinged cinematic delight of a wholly different flavour. Produced by Robert Connolly and adapted from the best-selling short story collection by internationally renowned author Tim Winton, The Turning is a portmanteau film that subtly weaves a sparse narrative surrounding members of the Lang family, exploring the impact of the past and how futures are sometimes shaped in the smallest moments.
Fresh from last year’s BFI London Film Festival (where it landed an unlikely nomination for Best Film), taut heist thriller Son of a Gun is the first feature from writer-director Julius Avery, whose short film Jerrycan won the Jury Prize at Cannes in 2008. Imports Ewan McGregor and Alicia Vikander star alongside up-and-comer Brenton Thwaites, who plays a young prisoner taken under the protective wing of McGregor’s criminal hard man – accruing a debt that must be repaid on the outside.
It may be a dying art these days, but anyone of a certain age will likely remember those advertorials where punters were asked what they thought of a film as they left a screening. Well, our semi-regular Vox Pop column is updating that notion for the 21st century by attempting to gauge the mood of the Twitterverse about Australian films in the UK, putting it somewhere between criticism by consensus and an opinionated free-for-all.
Jennifer Kent’s pop-up book scarefest The Babadook landed in British and Irish cinemas on Friday (in what constituted the widest release of an Australian film here for some time). The critics may have lauded it with four and five star reviews, and early indications suggest that it has had a strong opening weekend, but lets see what the punters thought.
A little boy, a mysterious picture book, a strung-out mother still struggling to cope with the death of her husband six years earlier, and one very sinister monster, who may or may not be coming to kill them both.
“If it’s in a word, or it’s in a look – you can’t get rid of the Babadook!”
It may not be a household name, but ‘Michael White’ appears on the credits of 200-odd theatre and film productions. A key cultural player in 1970s Britain, White’s midas hand touched everything from The Rocky Horror Show to Monty Python’s Holy Grail, and introduced ground-breaking figures such as Merce Cunningham and Pina Bausch to UK audiences.
To celebrate the UK cinema release of Ivan Sen’s potent, highly-charged slow-burn western Mystery Road, this review (of sorts) meanders in search of the film’s place within forty-odd years of through lines in the Australian film industry.
In what is looking increasingly like a bumper year for Australian cinema in British cinemas, ANZAC Day (April 25) sees the release of Tracks, the long-awaited adaptation of Robyn Davidson’s memoir which detailed a nine-month solo trek across the vast Australian outback from Alice Springs across the top of Western Australia to the Indian Ocean.