Thursday, September 27, 2007

Forbidden Lie$ on the radio

Later today, in about 15 minutes in fact! on Eastside 89.7 FM i'll be appearing on Cinemascape, the station's weekly show about the movies. This week I'll be passing judgement on Anna Broinowski's fabulous documentary Forbidden Lie$. The film attempts to discover the truth about the best selling book Forbidden Love and its author Norma Khouri. Whether fact or fiction, the film tries to uncover one of the biggest litary cons of this generation. If Khouri's best friend was murdered in an honour killing in Jordan or if her friend ever really existed. If you are reading this now and living in Sydney...tune in!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Hidden DVD review

As the film opens on its bleak static opening image, Hidden (Cache) immediately puts the audience on edge. But then Michael Haneke continuingly confounding thriller delights in not giving the audience what it wants. Seemingly taking its inspiration from David Lynch’s Teutonic nightmare Lost Highway; Hidden follows the Laurent family as they begin to receive videocassettes and childish, yet gruesome messages, through their post box. The tapes show footage of their daily routines, secretly filmed without their consent. Georges, a television celebrity, is obviously alarmed by this invasion of his families’ privacy and starts to investigate where these packages have come from. Little does he know that a dark secret that he has kept from his wife Anne and family may well be the clue to who is harassing his family.

Shot with minimal camera movement and a complete disregard for the principals of the thriller genre; Hidden is a refreshing change from the usual Hollywood fodder we are spoon fed in the name of entertainment. To reveal the film’s conclusion would do Haneke’s masterpiece a great disservice. Some viewers will be enthralled, some will feel cheated, some will be angry but everyone is made to think.

The performances are excellent; Auteuil was fabulous last year in the thriller 36 Quai des Orfèvres and he excels here in the role of Georges. His wife Anne is played by Juliette Binoche; best known for her work in Kieslowski’s Three Colours trilogy and Chocolat. This is serious adult entertainment, the underlying political agenda, a discussion on immigration in French society shows that Haneke small family portrait has the big picture in mind. Viewing his early work like Benny’s Video and Funny Games it’s obvious that Haneke revels in expanding the limits of cinematic art. Born in Germany, Hidden is the third of his films shot in France following Code Inconnu (Code Unknown), also starring Binoche and the critically acclaimed La Pianiste (The Piano Teacher.)

In an unnerving touch the film has no music giving the effect that the audience is also watching a home video of the Laurent families’ life. We are accomplice to the sinister figure who has been filming them. Not that the viewer knows who the villain of the piece is. In Haneke’s Hidden, the truth is there to be discovered, you’re just not going to find it quickly.

For full review check out

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Lady Chatterley

Later today, Friday 14th, at the new time of 6pm I'll producing the latest Cinemascape show on Eastside 89.7 FM. This week I'll be reviewing Pascale Ferran's ponderous Lady Chatterely. Starring Marina Hands and Jean-Louis Coullo'ch; this French twist on DH Lawrence's classic English tome failed to create any spark between the two leads. A fatal mistake when the film revolves around their ensuing relationship. Tune in to hear the rest of my thoughts.