FILM REVIEW: THE CHILLS: THE TRIUMPH & TRAGEDY OF MARTIN PHILLIPPS

  Martin Phillipps is a brave, post-punk poet. The leader of the New Zealand band, The Chills has had a long and varied career writing heavenly pop tunes that are filled with dark undercurrents. The Chills: The Triumph and Tragedy of Martin Phillipps is a revealing look at an eccentric protagonist in his own tragicomic story. Phillipps is an artist…

FILM REVIEW: DAVID CROSBY: REMEMBER MY NAME

  David Crosby was a Byrd who became a “difficult cat”. In Remember My Name he is an old dog armed with a guitar in one hand and a spliff in the other. This musician and artist is very candid about his full and colourful life in this feature-length documentary. This film is ultimately an entertaining and insightful…

FILM REVIEW: LEFTOVER WOMEN

  Love and marriage go together like a horse and carriage. But what do you do if you’re a single woman who is over a certain age living in China? The documentary, Leftover Women, is an illuminating look at three individuals who grapple with various stigmas and expectations, in a society where women are encouraged to marry…

FILM REVIEW: MARTHA: A PICTURE STORY

  They say if you do something you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. American photographer, Martha Cooper fits this to a tee. She has had a long and storied career capturing some fine images of urban landscapes, and changing towns and communities. Martha: A Picture Story is like a love letter to this accomplished septuagenarian….

FILM REVIEW: TOLKIEN

  There is no question that author, J.R.R Tolkien is worthy of a bio-pic. The writer is responsible for some of the most beloved fantasy epics including: The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. This bio-pic is a rather pedestrian telling of some of his life events and as such, is unworthy of such a creative and lauded mind as…

BLU-RAY REVIEW: LA BAMBA

  La Bamba is a big bopper. The film is a music bio about the late, great artist, Ritchie Valens, whose death has become known as the “Day the music died.” This film is a rather rose-tinted and fitting tribute to the golden child of rock ‘n’ roll music. This eighties film was written and…

FILM REVIEW: ALL IS TRUE

  It’s fair to say that most people know Shakespeare and his plays. But very little is known about the old Bard himself. All Is True is a bio-pic about ye olde William i.e. the writer in his twilight years. The result is a story that relies on some speculation and doesn’t always live up to its…

FILM REVIEW: WAITING- THE VAN DUREN STORY

  The name “Van Duren” may not mean much to most people. But to Greg Carey and Wade Jackson this Memphis musician is king. The pair went on a journey to discover more about this artist. The result, Waiting: The Van Duren Story is like Searching for Sugar Man, because it sees some fans searching for a creative genius and the format allows…

BLU-RAY REVIEW: THE MERGER

  Australians let us all rejoice for we all love our sports. The comedy film, The Merger, knows this and celebrates this part of our culture. The result is a well-intentioned look at how people from all walks of life can come together for a good game of footy. This film – directed by Backyard Ashes’…

BLU-RAY REVIEW: AN ANGEL AT MY TABLE

  There are a lot of films about writers and their lives. Consider: Capote, Salinger, The Man Who Invented Christmas and more. An Angel At My Table fits into this tradition. It’s a biopic devoted to New Zealand’s most famous author, Janet Frame. This bio-pic is a very detailed and slow-burning account of her life. This…