Shazam! review: a heartfelt superhero film that resonates

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Film, Reviews, Screen |
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There are plenty of moments of joy still to be found wedged inside many of the precision-engineered blockbusters rolling off the contemporary Hollywood production line. The microscopic fight inside a free-falling handbag in 2015’s Ant-Man, say, or the moment in 2017’s Spiderman Homecoming when both superhero and high school plot lines converge – on prom

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Budget 2019: Infographic on arts input into Australia

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Last night’s Federal Budget once again showed the LNP ’s adhoc and grudging tolerance of the arts. The organisation representing the major performing arts companies, AMPAG, is one of nine arts sector bodies that has created an infographic showing national participation in the arts and how its economic impact contributes $4.2 billion to Australia’s GDP. According to AMPAG (it represents the 28 major performing arts companies lucky

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Budget 2019: What is Australia’s Cultural Policy?

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Last night’s federal budget documents offered stark insights into our nation’s culture by setting out Australia’s political priorities in financial terms. In the absence of a written policy, how do these political decisions reveal the unwritten values that frame our cultural life? asks arts industry advocate Esther Anatolitis. Surprisingly, identifying those values is much easier than

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Woman at War film review

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Film, Reviews, Screen |

Woman at War is a delightful and whimsical Icelandic movie with a plot that is more serious than expected from its billing as a “comedy/thriller/drama”. Halla is the eponymous ‘Mountain Woman’ who is an activist fighting a power company who are trying to finalise a mysterious deal with Chinese investors. In between sabotaging power lines and skilfully evading capture from the local

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Why French Film Queen Juliette Binoche is having a moment

Let the Sunshine In
Festivals, Film, News & Commentary, Screen |

Some film stars play variations of themselves; others disappear into their roles. Somehow Juliette Binoche manages to do both: you’re never entirely unaware that you’re watching the French arthouse stalwart, and yet she manages to embody a spectrum of human emotions unreachable to lesser actors prone to overcompensation and overacting. Between a recent retrospective of

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Deborah Williams and changing the world through Creative Diversity

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Deborah Williams is an award-winning actor, writer, theatremaker and executive director of the UK’s Creative Diversity Network. She is in Australia this week to present a keynote speech at the Fair Play Symposium for Diversity Arts Australia in partnership with Creative Victoria. She will be also speaking at Belvoir Theatre, Sydney today from 4 -6pm. My road

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Mike McLeish on the ‘The Drop Off’ and the pleasures and pain of making a web series

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News & Commentary, Screen, TV |

Mike McLeish, actor, singer, and music theatre star is best known for his unforgettable channelling of a charmingly Machiavellian Paul Keating in the mega-hit musical Keating. As performers have done for centuries, he and his wife – and fellow performer and writer – Fiona Harris, have had to create their own opportunities. They are now into the second series of their self-produced series The Drop Off

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Hugh Jackman’s appearance on 7:30 highlights the problems of starry-eyed cultural journalism

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News & Commentary, TV |

The ABC’s 7:30 program is a reliable source of quality journalism, offering dignified current affairs investigations at a time in the evening when other networks race to the bottom – zooming in on tasty dishes in My Kitchen Rules and lifeguards pounding the sand in Bondi Rescue. Last week 7:30 investigated franking credits, the aftermath

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Greta film review: Isabelle Huppert enlivens rote psychological thriller

Isabelle Huppert
Film, Reviews, Screen |
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Isabelle Huppert stalks Chloë Grace Moretz through the streets of New York City in the fitfully lurid, occasionally stylish and ultimately inconsequential little thriller Greta. The film is not without its charms, chief among them a scenery-chewing performance from Huppert. She plays Greta Hideg, a self-confessed lonely old woman who has taken to leaving handbags

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