film

film November 3, 2018

Bohemian Rhapsody

While Rami Malek shines as Queen frontman Freddie Mercury, Bohemian Rhapsody plays it so safe and is so sexually sanitised it fails to truly rock us.

television October 27, 2018

‘Triple threat’ Maya Rudolph

Known for her masterful Saturday Night Live impersonations and starring role in the comedy hit film Bridesmaids, Maya Rudolph is now tackling the subject of married mundanity in the new series Forever. But while her own life is far from dull, her priorities for work and family remain very simple. “For me, when I became a mum, I changed, and my needs changed. I didn’t want to be away from my kids … If something I’m loathing is taking me away from my kids, then I shouldn’t be there.”

film September 22, 2018

‘Dark Tourist’ documentary-maker David Farrier

Where once he was Tickled, New Zealand documentary-maker David Farrier has most recently devoted himself to visiting ghoulish sites of so-called ‘dark tourism’. Here, he talks about murky ethics, Kiwi sensibilities and the pressure to react the ‘right’ way. “There’s one point where I’ve got a gun to my head and I laugh, because I’m sort of nervous. “Some people will say to me that it was really inappropriate to laugh at that point … [But] that’s what happened. It’s uncomfortable laughter. We wanted to leave all that in.”

film September 29, 2018

Ladies in Black

Bruce Beresford’s Ladies in Black is not just a homage to classical filmmaking and 1950s Sydney, it is also a window into the cultural richness brought by post-World War II refugees. If only it had pushed darker themes further.

film September 15, 2018

The ‘whiteness’ of Crazy Rich Asians

Crazy Rich Asians is a breakthrough moment for Asian representation in Hollywood, but even in this rom-com the cloud of imperialism and colonialism is never truly lifted.

film September 8, 2018

Filmmaker Lynne Ramsay’s musical inspiration

Film director and screenwriter Lynne Ramsay frequently turns to books to find engaging stories, as with her adaptation of Jonathan Ames’ novella You Were Never Really Here, but it’s music that truly inspires her. “Sometimes you need to explain that sound is the bigger picture. I’m a frustrated musician at heart, because the mix to me is one of the most exhilarating parts to making a film.”

comedy August 25, 2018

The many sides of Eddie Izzard

Eddie Izzard burst onto the comedy scene in make-up and heels, later proving his chops as a dramatic actor. On the eve of the release of The Flip Side, set in South Australia, he talks about taking risks, being gender queer and his newest passion – running for British parliament. “I want people, moderate people like me, to get politicised, because it’s going to get rough and we’d better work out how we’re going to make it work. It’s up to us.”

film August 18, 2018

Spike Lee’s ‘BlacKkKlansman’

Where Spike Lee’s films usually brim with passion and intellect, his portrayal of black activism and racism in BlacKkKlansman becomes more slapstick than sinister.

film August 11, 2018

Danny Glover on acting and activism

Actor Danny Glover is probably best known for his on-screen roles spanning nearly 40 years, but his appearance in Australia to address a trade union conference comes after a lifelong commitment to civil rights and labour activism. “I was invited here again, by First Nations people, 22 years ago. I went to visit men who were incarcerated and, like in my own country, they were disproportionately people of colour. Then I knew a little bit more about Australia.”

film July 28, 2018

Director Thomas M. Wright and ‘Acute Misfortune’

On the eve of the release of his directorial debut, Acute Misfortune, adapted from Erik Jensen’s book about artist Adam Cullen, Thomas M. Wright talks about how his reaction to Cullen turned from revulsion to deciding he was the perfect subject. “Adam seemed to stand for so many things that I just can’t. And I think, particularly, cloaking that behaviour and those attitudes behind a veil of art is just fucked.”

film July 21, 2018

Why Spike Lee’s laughing at the Ku Klux Klan

Spike Lee’s new film BlacKkKlansman tells a true story of an African–American policeman infiltrating the Ku Klux Klan. Its themes of blaxploitation, racism and oppression, says the filmmaker, perfectly reflect the political climate we live in now. “When Kevin [Willmott, the film’s co-writer] and I came on board, our No. 1 concern, as storytellers, was to connect this period piece to present day. We had to con-nect. So, we did our research.”