DON’T WORRY, HE WON’T GET FAR ON FOOT

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Gus Van Sant Stars: Joaquin Phoenix, Jonah Hill, Rooney Mara, Jack Black, Udo Kier, Kim Gordon, Beth Ditto, Mark Webber, Tony Greenhand, Carrie Brownstone. The late US cartoonist John Callahan is not a household name, and is largely unheard of outside of the United States, which makes this quirky and unconventional biopic a bit of a hard sell. Callahan died in 2010. Set in Portland Oregon during the late 70s and early 80s this biopic looks at the life of Callahan (played here in a career best performance by Joaquin Phoenix), an Continue reading

JIRGA

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Benjamin Gilmour Stars: Sam Smith, Sher Alam Miskeen Ustad, Mohammad Mosam, Kefeyat Lag Humani. This low budget drama is the sophomore feature film from Australian writer/director Benjamin Gilmour, and follows his 2007 drama Son Of A Lion, which was set in post 9/11 Pakistan. Gilmour is familiar with the region and has chosen to set his new film in Afghanistan. Jirga deals with an Australian soldier who returns to the region several years later on a personal mission of redemption. Years earlier during a raid on a village, Mike Continue reading

YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Lynne Ramsay Stars: Joaquin Phoenix, Ekaterina Samsonov, Alex Minette, Judith Roberts, John Doman. Glaswegian filmmaker Lynne Ramsay’s moody and grim films have always dealt with damaged characters (We Need To Talk About Kevin, etc) and difficult and confronting subject matter. Her fourth feature is no different. You Were Never Really Here is based on the slim tome from Jonathan Ames (Bored To Death, etc), a twisted noir about Joe (Joaquin Phoenix, from Walk The Line, Gladiator, etc) a damaged former soldier and FBI agent who Continue reading

WAYNE

Reviewed by GREG KING Documentary Director: Jeremy Sims. This well made, well-researched and entertaining documentary traces the life of Australia’s motor cycle racing world champion Wayne Gardner from his humble beginnings in the Sydney suburb of Woollongong through to his rise to the top of his sport. It is a tale of ambition, speed, dangerous risks, adversity, success and love. Gardner was born in the working-class town of Woollongong, and, inspired by the classic movie On Any Sunday, from an early age he felt the need for speed. “I just wanted to go Continue reading

THE MERGER

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Mark Grentell Stars: Damian Callinan, John Howard, Kate Mulvany, Rafferty Grierson, Fayssal Bazzi, Josh McConville, Angus McLaren, Penny Cook, Nick Cody, Sahil Saluja, Harry Tseng, Ben Knight, Stephen Hunter, Aaron Gocs. Football is the lifeblood of many small rural towns across Australia and provides a sense of community and belonging. There have been a few films that have explored the world of Aussie Rules football – The Great McCarthy (1975); The Club (1980), which was based on David Williamson’s satirical play about the Continue reading