Reviews / 05.09.2019

Everybody loves a clown. After 2017's It shockingly became the highest-grossing horror film of all time, we all knew a sequel wouldn't be far away, particularly after the words "Chapter One" flashed on-screen during the closing credits. With its 1980s nostalgia, a winning ensemble cast of youngsters, and a menacing performance from Bill Skarsgard, the film deserved every dollar it raked in at the box office. Just two years later, it's time to head back to Derry where Pennywise the Dancing Clown (Skarsgard) is set to unleash a whole...

Reviews / 04.09.2019

Almost 20 years ago, a plucky little seven-year-old Latina girl named Dora debuted on Nickelodeon, determined to teach kids about riddles, puzzles, and, most importantly, the Spanish language. As we're in the age of cinematic remakes of cherished television shows, it was all but assured Dora would make her way to the big screen at some point. While the existence of the live-action remake Dora and the Lost City of Gold is far from a shock, the resulting film is one of the most pleasantly surprising experiences of...

Reviews / 29.08.2019

Picture this: a trio of wives find themselves in a bind after their mobster husbands leave them in the lurch, forcing them to take over the nefarious criminal activities to pay the bills. You don't have to picture it because we already saw this narrative in 2018 with Steve McQueen's shamefully Oscar-ignored Widows. Yet, less than a year later, here we are to do it all again with The Kitchen; a film which suffers terribly by unfortunate comparison to McQueen's masterwork. Lacking the deep characterisation, thrilling plot, and sharp...

Reviews / 17.08.2019

When a film begins with the title-card "based on an actual lie," you know you're in for an intriguing piece of cinema. Such is the case with The Farewell; writer/director Lulu Wang's sublime autobiographical sophomore film, inspired by the true story of a rather shocking deception she was forced to perform out of familial obligation. An authentic and touching look at the cultural divide between two wildly different civilisations, The Farewell offers an insight into a traditional practice many will be unfamiliar with. And perhaps rather startled by. But...

Reviews / 14.08.2019

Movies centred on a lovable canine are inherently designed to be emotionally manipulative, particularly on dog-loving audience members. If you've ever been blessed to know the unconditional love dogs provide and consequently experienced the gutwrenching pain of having to say goodbye to your beloved pooch, any film with an adorable hound at its helm will always hit you right in the feels. As you've likely already guessed, this film critic falls into that category, having been lucky enough to have faithful dogs by my side throughout my entire life....

Reviews / 08.08.2019

Despite the fact Australian troops have played a role in every major conflict of the 20th century, war movies are hardly synonymous with our local film industry. You could almost count every Australian war film with just two hands. While American cinema has exhaustively covered their disastrous Vietnam War, the tales of the 60,000 Australian troops who served in the combat have barely been touched. In the annals of Australia's military history, 1966's Battle of Long Tan is a moment that's given little coverage, spurned by the shameful fact...

Reviews / 07.08.2019

Workplace comedies have been around since the dawn of cinema. From golden age classics like His Girl Friday and The Shop Around the Corner to modern-day riots like Office Space and Anchorman, there's comedic gold to be found in situational humour in the drudgery of office life. But for all the laughs, the genre can provide some sharp commentary on the state of the imbalance of power facing those who aren't lucky enough to fall in the white male category. Such is the case with Late Night; a deviously...

Reviews / 07.08.2019

The reunion movie is almost a genre within itself. Whether it's a group of friends coming together again for the first time in years or a fractured family reconnecting after a catalytic event, these films generally involve the revelation of a few major secrets that have been festering in the shadows. Such is the appearance of new Australian film Palm Beach; a film which presents itself as a wicked weekend getaway where old friends will finally confront their equally-old demons. While there are plenty of skeletons in the closet...

Reviews / 06.08.2019

With only eight films in his illustrious career, writer/director Quentin Tarantino has left an indelible mark on cinema in the last few decades. Love him or hate him, you cannot deny the filmmaker's unique style and vision. With  Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, his ninth (and potentially penultimate) film, Tarantino offers a deeply personal piece of cinema that plays like a glorious love letter to the Tinseltown of old. In perhaps his most compassionate and affectionate work to date, Tarantino meticulously recreates Hollywood of the late 1960s in...

Reviews / 04.08.2019

In 2018, a bold new visionary director entered the psychological horror landscape and knocked our damn socks off. With the divisive (it's okay if you hated it) Hereditary, writer/director Ari Aster offered a hefty helping of nightmarish imagery, shocking moments, and a stunning performance by his leading lady, the Oscar-ignored (no, I'm not over it) Toni Collette. Just one year later, Aster returns to do it all again with Midsommar; an equally unsettling and disturbing endurance test for audiences, cemented by one of the best female lead performances you...