SUBSCRIBE

Tag: biography

Film Reviews

Blood Brothers: Malcolm X & Muhammad Ali

Friday, September 17th, 2021 Film Reviews,

“Destiny can take your best friend as an instrument to cause you harm and your worst enemy to do you good,” says Muhammad Ali a few minutes into this absorbing Netflix documentary. He is referring to black activist, Malcolm X, who had fallen out with Elijah Muhammad, the leader of the Nation of Islam, a […]

Film Reviews

Naomi Osaka

Thursday, August 5th, 2021 Film Reviews,

We’re all familiar with newspaper stories about torn hamstrings, stress fractures, busted knees and shoulders. The Age can devote an entire page to a champion footballer’s groin strain. But until recently nobody ever mentioned an athlete’s mental health unless it was to lament some lapse in concentration at a vital stage. “A brain explosion!” is […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Jean-Honoré Fragonard

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2021 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Art is long but lockdowns are short – even if they seem interminable. With museums and galleries closed, or open by appointment only, this presents a rare opportunity to trawl back over the history of art looking for subjects that illuminate the present. We often hear that a great work of art is “timeless”, meaning […]

Film Reviews

Elvis Presley: The Searcher

Friday, July 2nd, 2021 Film Reviews,

There are many different Elvises, from the young hillbilly who set the music world alight with his very first recording to the bloated, drug-addled superstar, squeezed into a white jumpsuit with cape, playing to packed houses in Las Vegas casinos. In a week in which it’s impossible to get to the movies in many parts […]

Journals

Whiteley: the Opera

Friday, June 18th, 2021 Journals,

Ever since John Adams gave us Nixon in China in 1987, the possibilities for opera have been limitless. Unlike the Greek tragedians who were obliged to set every play in a mythical age of Gods and heroes, contemporary composers have drawn subjects from the news cycle, and from the tawdry lives of latter-day celebrities. Elena […]

Journals

Acute misfortune (for the viewer)

Friday, June 18th, 2021 Journals,

When viewers of Acute Misfortune first catch sight of Daniel Henshall playing artist maudit, Adam Cullen, they may experience a flash of déjà vu. The quiet, menacing tones of John Bunting, mastermind of the Snowtown serial murders, are back on air. Justin Kurzel’s Snowtown (2011) is a movie I have no desire to watch again, […]

Journals

Kusama: Infinity

Friday, June 18th, 2021 Journals,

Kusama: Infinity has echoes of “Eternity”, that word inscribed in chalk on surfaces all over Sydney for 35 years, by the eccentric Arthur Stace. It took Martin Sharp to make Stace into a cult figure when he reproduced that distinctive cursive script on a poster, but Yayoi Kusama has been a one-woman cult since she […]

Journals

Looby

Friday, June 18th, 2021 Journals,

“He’s due for a late flowering,” says artist, McLean Edwards. “I just wish he hadn’t burnt so many bridges on the way.” One of those bridges is Mclean himself, who has already told us he no longer has any relationship with Keith Looby. It made me think: “Do I have any sort of relationship with […]

Film Reviews

My Name is Gulpilil

Friday, June 11th, 2021 Film Reviews,

It’s not widely appreciated what an electrifying effect Nicolas Roeg’s Walkabout (1971) had on the Australian film industry. To put it bluntly, at that time there was no Australian film industry, only occasional features made in Australia by overseas directors. Michael Powell left two notable contributions: They’re a Weird Mob (1966) and Age of Consent (1969), […]

Film Reviews

De Gaulle

Friday, May 7th, 2021 Film Reviews,

Charles De Gaulle was an imposing figure, both physically and morally. Standing at 196 cms, he was a man almost everyone looked up to. As leader-in-exile of the French Resistance, the head of the provisional post-war government, and the nation’s dominant political figure of the 20th century, De Gaulle enjoyed an unshakable power and prestige. […]