Well, there are many aspects of Australian life I just don’t get, and one of those is the veneration of Ned Kelly. But then it does have the distinction of being the subject of the first feature film ever made. Today we look at a movie that explores the life of Ned Kelly, the true story of the bushranger … well maybe not the whole truth …or even a little bit of it.
So to set the scene, in 1867 Australia, and a young Ned Kelly (Orlando Schwerdt) is trying to find his place in a rural world with no education and a mother Ellen (Essie Davis) with an ‘interesting’ view of raising children. She sells the boy to Harry Power (Russell Crowe) a bushranger who introduces the boy to the violent world, including shooting Sergeant O’Neill (Charlie Hunnam) a member of the constabulary. After spending time in jail and away from his family Ned (George MacKay) returns home and gets brought back into the world he once escaped.
TL;DR – This is a truly bizarre but entirely compelling show, that blends fiction and reality with a deft hand
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
A couple of years ago there was this odd film that exploded into the world out of nowhere, it was an exploration of Queen Anne full of intrigue and irreverence. When something like that blasts out into the world you try to find out what the creators will do next, so when I heard the latest series around Catherine the Great was writing by Tony McNamara one of the writers of The Favourite I had to give it a watch and it was a good choice.
So to set the scene, Catherine (Elle Fanning) is a starry-eyed young noble who has had the fortune to be matched with the current Emperor of Russia, Peter III (Nicholas Hoult). She brings him a branch as a present of her love, living in this world of fantasy right up until the local archbishop ‘Archie’ (Adam Godley) checked to see if she was still a virgin. The realities of the Russian court were nothing like she had thought, with violence and bitterness at every turn. Still, she found comfort in her maid Marial (Phoebe Fox), the odd wisdom of Aunt Elizabeth (Belinda Bromilow), and the books of Orlo (Sacha Dhawan). Maybe she could find a place here in this strange land … or maybe yet, could not this strange land bend to her will. Now we will be looking at the series as a whole and as such there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – At times funny, at times perplexing, and at times very dark, it explores the world of immense power and those who want to obtain it, and the damage that can do.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
We live in a world where thanks to technology we can explore galaxies far away,
to fantasies imagined in every which way, but sometimes reality can be stranger
than anything we can muster. Today we are exploring a film that is set around
the power politics of last years of the House of Stuart as different people
position themselves in an ever-shifting
world. This would be interesting enough in itself, but in both a less and in
some cases more dramatic way this is what really happened (or at least what was
alleged to have happened) in real life. It is a snapshot of absolute power, but also of sadness, and
TL;DR – Today we countdown my Top 10 films of all time; from towns where there are a lot of ‘accidents’, to all forms of Sci-Fi, to do you know the man with six fingers on his right hand, and everything in between.
Recently I watched the CineFix crew countdown their Top 10 films, and it had me thinking what are mine? Now it was at this point where I of course naturally spiralled as how can you reduce thousands of films that you have seen into only a Top 10. Just before I threw my hands up in resignation and chucked in the towel I happened to catch an episode of Movies with Mikey on how he determined the best sequel. With this in mind I wondered if there was a set of criteria that I could use to categorise the films into a list that I would be happy with, and after some work, I came up with the following criteria that work for me.
Films that are beautifully constructed
Films that mean something to me
Films that are always re-watchable
Films that have added to my love of the craft of cinema
With this criterion in mind I went through all the likely candidates and with a bit of a struggle I think I have been able to come to a final list, well at least until I change my mind next week, which is always a chance.
TL;DR – Ok straight off the bat this is not as good as the last two, but it is still a pretty good outing for the X-Men, and leagues ahead of the Last Stand
Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars
P.S. there is a post credit scene
So here we are with the six main film in the X-Men franchise, we’ve had one franchise killer, we’ve had one reboot, and a resurgence, so can Apocalypse continue the strong trend of First Class and Days of Future Past? Well no. Now I’m not saying it is a bad film, honestly it is just a disappointing one at times.
TL;DR – A masterpiece of action and cinema, something you should go see just for the spectacle.
Score – 5 out of 5 stars
Wow, just wow, George Miller knows how to put on a visual spectacle. Now I should mention at this point that I have never seen any of the other Mad Max’s (outside of those clips you see from time to time on TV) so while I had a basic understanding of the lore, I (for better or worse) did not come into this film with nostalgia baggage, which is good because you don’t need any of that to enjoy this film.