MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2017 – REVIEWS

ALL FILMS REVIEWED BY GREG KING LAST UPDATED AUGUST 13, 2017 FINAL PORTRAIT. In 1964, renowned portrait artist and sculptor Albert Giacometti passed away soon after completing his final painting. He had painted a portrait of American journalist James Lord, who had come to Paris for a brief visit. The portrait was only supposed to take a couple of days, but the increasingly frustrated Lord spent a couple of weeks with the mercurial artist in his Paris studio. Final Portrait is a passion project for writer/director Stanley Tucci who has been nurturing the film Continue reading

QUEEN OF THE DESERT

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Werner Herzog Stars: Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Robert Pattinson, Damien Lewis, Jenny Agutter, David Calder. This queen of the desert is not a bus named Priscilla. Rather she is a modern thinking, fiercely independent, headstrong and intelligent British woman named Gertrude Bell who is apparently right up there with the famed T E Lawrence as an important figure in contemporary Arab history. An explorer, writer, archaeologist and traveller, she had an enormous impact on the politics of the Middle East at the beginning of the 20th Continue reading

LIFE

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Anton Corbijn Stars: Dane DeHaan, Robert Pattinson, Joel Edgerton, Ben Kingsley, Alessandro Mastronardi. In 1955, photographer Robert Stock took that iconic photograph of actor James Dean strolling through the rain in Times Square. It was a photograph that immortalised the young star and created a timeless image of the actor's brooding presence and rebellious nature. This Australian-Canadian co-production, written by Australian novelist Luke Davies (Candy, etc) tells the story behind that iconic photograph and the brief, unusual and Continue reading

THE ROVER

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: David Michod Stars: Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson, David Field, Scoot McNairy, Anthony Hayes, Nash Edgerton, Susan Prior, Gillian Jones. David Michod broke through to the consciousness of Australian and international audiences with his gritty crime drama Animal Kingdom. Expectations were high for his follow up film, and while The Rover doesn't quite hit the same heights as Animal Kingdom it is a stylistically interesting if bleak, violent and downbeat drama set in the not too distant future and this genre piece may well divide audiences. Continue reading

WATER FOR ELEPHANTS

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Francis Lawrence Stars: Robert Pattinson, Reese Witherspoon, Christoph Waltz, Hal Holbrook, Paul Schneider. While it may not be the greatest show on earth, this blend of romance and circus drama is still a pretty good melodrama. Based on the 2006 bestselling novel by Sara Gruen, and solidly adapted by veteran screenwriter Richard La Gravenese, Water For Elephants is set against the background of a circus, travelling around the eastern states of the US during the depression. It is 1931, and times are hard, even for Continue reading