Tagged: Ewen Leslie

When an unidentified woman is found brutally murdered, evidence discovered at the scene links to a 20-year-old unsolved crime. What begins as a routine investigation exposes something more insidious, as political corruption and shady business dealings intertwine with sinister crimes and occult practices.

The thrilling eight-part series stars Emma Booth (Glitch) and Ewen Leslie (The Cry) Martin Henderson (Grey’s Anatomy), Aaron Pedersen (Mystery Road) and Rena Owen (Siren), with a stellar director lineup including Michael Rymer (American Horror Story), Greg McLean (Stan Original Series Wolf Creek) and Sian Davies (Wentworth).

The Mule

Entertainment One and THE MULE filmmakers are thrilled with the results of their decision to release THE MULE first to digital on November 21, followed by Blu-Ray, DVD and digital rental on December 3 in Australia.

This strategy, which allows the film to be seen immediately on any device, at any time, saw THE MULE open in, and maintain, the #1 position on the iTunes charts in the Independent genre. It is currently the iTunes #2 Thriller, #2 Drama and #4 Comedy, and ranked #8 on the iTunes charts against all films on store, in the company of a number of heavyweight blockbusters.

THE MULE DVD and Blu-Ray has also received significant support and engagement from retail and rental partners. It has shipped close to 11,000 units three weeks out from Christmas, a time of year dominated by blockbusters.

Along with a national marketing campaign, the local release of THE MULE was supported with a Sydney and Melbourne publicity tour, which included screenings and public Q&A sessions. Events for the film extended to a world first virtual premiere; an experience for fans to join the filmmakers, cast, as well as their international guests, in communal movie-watching and live tweeting. Fans from around the globe pressed play on Sunday 7 December at 3pm EST simultaneously with Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell, Ewen Leslie, John Noble, Georgina Haig and Chris Pang, resulting in #TheMuleLive trending as the 4th highest topic Australia wide on Twitter, where it continued to trend for 90 minutes.

Louise Balletti, Head of Digital at Entertainment One said Results for THE MULE are on target with our forecast for our elevated campaign. We are thrilled that people have engaged in this new way, and we’re very pleased with the outcome”.

Australian critics have embraced THE MULE; including 4 stars from Margaret Pomeranz (At The Movies) calling it savvy, funny, and at times vicious… a tense, well-acted and very original thriller”, 3.5 stars from Leigh Paatsch (News Limited) stating “The Mule never buckles under the weight it must carry” and 4 stars from Luke Buckmaster (The Guardian) labeling it fiendishly smart and entertaining comedy”.

THE MULE is available now on Blu-Ray, DVD and Digital Download in Australia and New Zealand. The film is also available digitally in USA and Canada.

ABOUT THE MULE:
Directed by Angus Sampson and Tony Mahony, THE MULE is a darkly comic ride through crime, corruption and one man’s ability to defy his bodily functions. Penned by Leigh Whannell (Saw, Insidious), Angus Sampson and Jaime Browne, it stars Hugo Weaving alongside Sampson and Whannell, plus an ensemble cast including Ewen Leslie, Geoff Morrell, Georgina Haig, Noni Hazlehurst and John Noble.

The Mule

Summary: Inspired by true events, The Mule tells the story of a naive man who is detained by federal police with lethal narcotics hidden in his stomach. Alone and afraid, ‘the Mule’ makes a desperate choice; to defy his bodily functions and withhold the evidence… literally. By doing so he becomes a ‘human time bomb’; dragging cops, criminals and concerned family into his impossible escapade.

Year: 2014

Australian Cinema Release Date: 21st November, 2014

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: Australia

Director: Tony Mahony, Angus Sampson

Screenwriter: Jaime Browne, Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell

Cast: Georgina Haig (Lawyer), Noni Hazlehurst (Mum), Ewen Leslie (Paris), Geoff Morrell (Dad), John Noble (Pat Shepherd), Chris Pang (Phuk), Lasarus Ratuere (Josh), Angus Sampson (Ray Jenkins), Marsha Vassilevskaia (Tiffany), Hugo Weaving (Croft), Leigh Whannell (Gavin)

Runtime: 104 mins

Classification: MA15+

 

OUR THE MULE REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Greg King: You can check out Greg’s Winter Sleep review on www.filmreviews.net.au

Stars(4)

 

David Griffiths:

Australia has always had a knack of making good retro drama films. Films like Two Hands, Dirty Deeds and even Animal Kingdom spring straight to mind. Throw in the fact that despite the amount of times he has been horribly mis-cast on the big screen Aussie audiences still seem to love Angus Sampson and you would think that The Mule is a sure fire winner for Screen Australia.

But as every film journalist seems to like reminding people to film in Australia in its darkest days. So dark at the moment that the people behind The Mule have decided to go about its release in a very unique way. Instead of The Mule being screened in cinemas right across the country it will only appear on a couple of screens before then becoming available to the mass community online. Of course all that aside you would still expect that The Mule be a decent film if the people are expected to watch it. And that’s where you might be in for a surprise.

Flashback to 1983, a simpler time in Australia and the mighty Aussies were locked in a seven race fight with America to win the America’s Cup for the first time. At the same time a little Aussie battler named Ray Jenkins (played by Angus Sampson) was involved in a battle of his own. See normally Ray was a sensible man, he listened to his mother (Noni Hazelhurst), he played footy and he fixed televisions for a dodgy boss.

But then during an end of season footy trip to Asia, which his Mum didn’t want him to go on in the first place, Ray listened to his Dad (Geoff Morrell) and his wannabee criminal mate, Gavin (Leigh Whannell), and decided to fill his stomach with condoms full of heroin. It should have been an easy crime but instead Ray messed up at Melbourne Airport and soon finds himself locked in a room with hardened Federal Agent Croft (Hugo Weaving) and the kinder Federal Agent Paris (Ewen Leslie) who decide they will hold onto Ray until he literally spills his guts. That’s when Ray decides that he can sit them out and hold out… or should that be on… until they can longer hold him.

The Mule is actually a breath of fresh air in the Australian film industry because it gets so many things right. First of all as a first time director Tony Mahony (who shares the directional duties with Sampson) pretty much nails this film. He captures the period of 1983 well (despite the odd modern train appearing) and manages to mix the right amount of violence, comedy, drama and suspense together in a way that is not too dissimilar to an early Quentin Tarrantino. It’s rare that you watch a film where you find yourself barracking for a drug trafficker but just like the legendary Australian 2 yacht, here Ray is an Aussie battler taking it right up to the ‘big giants’ that want his scalp.

Mahony is of course aided by a wonderfully written script by Sampson and Whannell. While the film doesn’t quite find itself in the realm of Two Hands it does mix its genres well and is enough to make its audience go through a whole range of emotions. There are moments when you are find yourself laughing out loud, gagging and almost vomiting at some of the things that Ray has to do with the condoms and at other times find the cinema to be in a state of suspense and it becomes unclear just how far Pat Shepherd (John Noble) and is henchmen are willing to go to silence Ray and his family. And as if the script hasn’t already delivered enough to like by then it then has a huge twist that most audience members certainly won’t see coming.

The cream on the cake in this film is the casting. The normally strong Noni Hazlehurst and Geoff Morrell once again deliver gold but it is the two leading men here who lead this ship to the winning post. It’s not too cruel to say that Sampson has been badly miscast a number of times over his career, none more obvious than in Incidious, but here Sampson delivers everything you would want to see a comedic leading man deliver. The fact that he also does well during the dramatic scenes shows that perhaps we have all misjudged Sampson over the years and he just need the right role to show us all what he is really capable of.

Then opposite Sampson of course is Hugo Weaving who goes into complete bad guy mode playing ruthless, sexist, 1980s Federal Agent Croft to a tee. Croft allows Weaving to deliver some well timed punches to the stomach, sarcastic wit and beautifully delivered snarls alarmingly well and you hope the fact that this is one of Weaving’s best roles might mean that a few more people want to hunt down a copy of The Mule and give it a watch.

The Mule could well be Australia’s sleeper hit film of the year. It seems to take the qualities that most Australians like to see in their cinema and place it all together – the crime grit of a movie like Animal Kingdom mixed with that quirky Australian humor that saw Red Dog become such a big hit and just a hint of the battler story that made The Castle a must see. While the electronic release may frighten off some people The Mule is one Aussie film that is a must see this year.

Stars(4)

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5):  Stars(4)

 

IMDB Rating: The Mule (2014) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment The Mule reviews: For our full The Mule review please check The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #105 . You can also read Dave’s The Mule review on The Book The Film The T-Shirt.

Trailer:

The Mule Still

Entertainment One and THE MULE filmmakers are thrilled to announce the Australian feature film THE MULE will launch to Australian audiences on iTunes and other digital platforms on November 21, ensuring that the film can be seen immediately on any device, at any time. The film will simultaneously launch in the USA, Canada and New Zealand.

THE MULE filmmakers and actors Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell and Hugo Weaving will support the local release via a Sydney and Melbourne publicity tour, including event screenings and public Q&A sessions, ahead of its local launch.

This innovative release model is a unique offering for an Australian film, and will allow viewers to watch THE MULE how and when they want, on the device of their choice. THE MULE will be available for customers to pre-order on iTunes from Monday 29 September.

Troy Lum, Managing Director of Entertainment One Australia said “This style of release is testament to the vision of the filmmakers to present their film to the widest possible audience across the country and for eOne’s desire to drive new and unique ways to connect films with audiences in an ever changing landscape.”

Inspired by true events, THE MULE tells the story of a naive man who is detained by the federal police while he has lethal narcotics hidden in his stomach. Alone and afraid, ‘the Mule’ makes a desperate choice; to defy his bodily functions and withhold the evidence… literally. By doing so he becomes a ‘human time bomb’; dragging cops, criminals and concerned family into his impossible escapade.

Directed by Angus Sampson and Tony Mahony, THE MULE’S darkly comic screenplay was penned by three of Australia’s most exciting on and off screen talents; Leigh Whannell (Saw, Insidious), Angus Sampson and Jaime Browne. It stars Hugo Weaving alongside Sampson and Whannell with a fantastic ensemble cast including Ewen Leslie, Geoff Morrell, Georgina Haig, Noni Hazlehurst and John Noble. Filmed primarily in Melbourne, and Bangkok Thailand, the film received funding support from Screen Australia and Film Victoria.

THE MULE premiered to widespread acclaim at the 2014 South by Southwest festival and has been invited to enjoy its European premiere at the BFI London Film Festival in October.

Following the film’s digital release, THE MULE will be available on Blu Ray, DVD and on digital rental from December 3.

Geoffrey Rush

Fate Films, helmed by producers Jan Chapman and Nicole O’Donohue, is delighted to announce principal photography commences on The Daughter in Sydney, Australia on the 12th of September 2014. With support from Screen Australia and Screen NSW, the shoot will take place in Sydney and rural NSW.

Written and directed by critically acclaimed theatre director Simon Stone, The Daughter is a contemporary portrait of family love, dysfunction, deception and denial, inspired by Stone’s award-winning re-imagining of Henrik Ibsen’s The Wild Duck.

Stone has assembled a superb ensemble cast for his feature film debut, including Academy Award® winner Geoffrey Rush (The King’s Speech, Pirates of the Caribbean), Ewen Leslie (Dead Europe, Jewboy), Paul Schneider (Bright Star, Lars and the Real Girl), Miranda Otto (The Homesman, Reaching for The Moon), Anna Torv (Fringe, Deadline Gallipoli), with rising star Odessa Young and Sam Neill (The Piano, Jurassic Park).

Set in the last days of a dying logging town, Christian (Schneider) returns to his family home for his father Henry’s (Rush) wedding. Reconnecting with his childhood friend Oliver (Leslie) and Oliver’s family, wife Charlotte (Otto) and daughter Hedvig (Young) he unearths a long buried secret. As he tries to right the wrongs of the past, his actions threaten to shatter the lives of those he left behind years before. Will they survive the truth?

The film will be produced by Fate Films with Jan Chapman (Academy Award® winner The Piano, AFI Best Film winner Lantana and Palme d’Or nominated Bright Star) and Nicole O’Donohue (ACCTA Award nominated The Last Impresario and AACTA Award-winning feature film Griff the Invisible). When Chapman and O’Donohue saw Stone’s production of The Wild Duck at Sydney’s Belvoir Street Theatre they were drawn to the powerful story which instantly felt cinematic.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Simon whose work we have admired for some time, as well as an exceptional cast and crew to bring this truly emotional and resonant story to the screen.”

Roadshow Films, who has backed the project from its development, will distribute in Australia and New Zealand. Mongrel Film has acquired international sales. Roadshow Films Managing Director Joel Pearlman said, “Simon has achieved renown for his stage direction and we are thrilled to be supporting his entree into feature film directing, supported as he is by the strongest possible production team and phenomenal ensemble cast.”

AACTA Awards

The cream of Australian cinema will soon converge on Sydney for the AACTA Awards, so let’s take a look at the 2013 AACTA Award nominees.

Best Film

  • Dead Europe
  • The Great Gatsby
  • Mystery Road
  • The Rocket
  • Satellite Boy
  • The Turning

Best Direction

  • Baz Luhrmann, The Great Gatsby
  • Ivan Sen, Mystery Road
  • Kim Mordaunt, The Rocket
  • Directing Ensemble, The Turning

Best Lead Actor

  • Leonardo DiCaprio, The Great Gatsby
  • Sitthiphon Disamoe, The Rocket
  • Ewen Leslie, Dead Europe
  • Hugo Weaving, The Turning

Best Lead Actress

  • Rose Byrne, The Turning
  • Carey Mulligan, The Great Gatsby
  • Tasma Walton, Mystery Road
  • Naomi Watts, Adore

Best Supporting Actor

  • Marton Csokas, Dead Europe
  • Joel Edgerton, The Great Gatsby
  • Thep Phongam, The Rocket
  • Angus Sampson, 100 Bloody Acres

Best Supporting Actress 

  • Elizabeth Debecki, The Great Gatsby
  • Isla Fisher, The Great Gatsby
  • Mirrah Foulkes, The Turning
  • Alice Keohavong, The Rocket

Best Original Screenplay

  • Colin & Cameron Cairnes, 100 Bloody Acres
  • Morgan O’Neill & Tim Duff, Drift
  • Ivan Sen, Mystery Road
  • Kim Mordaunt, The Rocket

Best Adapted Screenplay

  • Christopher Hampton, Adore
  • Louise Fox, Dead Europe
  • Baz Luhrmann & Craig Pierce, The Great Gatsby
  • Writing Ensemble, The Turning

Best Documentary

  • I Am a Girl
  • Once My Mother
  • Red Obsession
  • Shadow of a Doubt 

Best Cinematography

  • Geoffrey Hall, Rick Rifici & Rick Jakovich, Drift
  • Damian E. Wyvill, Goddess
  • Simon Duggan, The Great Gatsby
  • Andrew Commis, The Rocket

Best Editing

  • Matt Villa, Jason Ballantine & Jonathan Redmond, The Great Gatsby
  • Ivan Sen, Mystery Road
  • Nick Meyers, The Rocket
  • Editing Ensemble, The Turning

Best Sound

  • The Great Gatsby
  • Mystery Road
  • The Rocket
  • Satellite Boy

Best Original Music Score

  • Jed Kurzel, Dead Europe
  • Michael Yezersky, Drift
  • Craig Armstrong, The Great Gatsby
  • Caitlin Yao, The Rocket

Best Production Design

  • Annie Beauchamp, Adore
  • Annie Beauchamp, Goddess
  • Catherine Martin, Karen Murphy, Ian Gracie & Beverley Dunn, The Great Gatsby
  • Pete Baxter, The Rocket

Best Costume Design

  • Joanna Mae Park, Adore
  • Shareen Beringer, Goddess
  • Catherine Martin, Silvana Azzi Heras & Kerry Thompson, The Great Gatsby
  • Woranun Pueakpan & Sylvia Wilczynski, The Rocket

 

AFCA

The nominations for the 2013 AFCA Awards are:

BEST FILM: Hail, Lore, The King Is Dead, The Sapphires, Wish You Were Here

BEST DIRECTOR: Wayne Blair (The Sapphires), Amiel Courtin-Wilson (Hail), Kieran Darcy-Smith (Wish You Were Here), Ralph de Heer (The King Is Dead), Cate Shortland (Lore)

BEST ACTOR: Joel Edgerton (Wish You Were Here), Matthew Goode (Burning Man), Daniel P Jones (Hail), Ewen Leslie (Dead Europe), Chris O’Dowd (The Sapphires)

BEST ACTRESS: Toni Collette (Mental), Deborah Mailman (The Sapphires), Felicity Price (Wish You Were Here), Saskia Rosendahl (Lore), Sarah Snook (Not Suitable For Children)

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Marton Csokas (Dead Europe), Liev Schrieber (Mental), Kodi Smit-McPhee (Dead Europe), Antony Starr (Wish You Were Here), Garry Waddell (The King Is Dead)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE: Essie Davis (Burning Man), Rebecca Gibney (Mental), Deborah Mailmen (Mental), Jessica Mauboy (The Sapphires), Bojana Novakovic (Burning Man)

BEST SCREENPALY: Amiel Courtin-Wilson (Hail), Cate Shortland & Robin Mukherjee (Lore), Rolf de Heer (The King Is Dead), Keith Thompson & Tony Briggs (The Sapphires), Kieran Darcy-Smith & Felicity Price (Wish You Were Here)

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: Adam Arkapaw (Lore), Germain McMicking (Hail), Germain McMicking (Dead Europe), Jules O’Loughlin (Wish You Were Here), Garry Phillips (Burning Man), Warwick Thornton (The Sapphires)

BEST EDITING: Jason Ballantine (Wish You Were Here), Martin Connor (Burning Man), Dany Cooper (The Sapphires), Veronika Jenet (Lore), Peter Sciberras (Hail)

BEST MUSIC SCORE: Steve Benwell (Hail), Antony Partos (33 Postcards), Max Richter (Lore), Cezary Skubiszewski (The Sapphires), Graham Tardif (The King Is Dead)

BEST OVERALL PRODUCTION DESIGN: Zohie Castalleno (Hail), Melinda Doring (The Sapphires), Silke Fischer (Lore), Steven Jones-Evans (Burning Man), Graham Walker (Mental)

BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM (FOREIGN LANGUAGE): A Separation, Holy Motors, Le Havre, The Kid With A Bike, The Raid

BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM (ENGLISH LANGUAGE): Argo, Beasts Of The Southern Wild, Deep Blue Sea, Hugo, Moonrise Kingdom

BEST DOCUMENTARY: All The Way Through Evening, I Am 11, Life In Movement, Paul Kelly: Stories Of Me, Searching For Sugarman

Summary: Following the death of his father in suburban Sydney, Isaac (Ewan Leslie) takes the ashes back to his father’s birthplace in Greece where he finds himself on the trail of a buried family secret.

At first he dismisses the revelation as superstitious nonsense, but over the course of his travels – from Greece to Paris to Budapest – Isaac is forced to confront the anti-Semitism of the past, the embedded bigotry in the bones of Europe and the nature of inherited guilt. It is on this fateful trip that Isaac will learn the truth of his family’s migration to Australia, their refusal to ever return to Greece, and the burden he continues to bear as a consequence of acts committed years before his birth.

Year: 2012

Australian Cinema Release Date: 15th November 2012

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: Australia

Director: Tony Krawitz

Screenwriter: Louise Fox, Christos Tsiolkas (novel)

Cast: Coral Amiga (Yvette), Jean-Francois Balmer (Gerry), Ania Bukstein (Amina), Elena Carapetis (Sophie), Marton Csokas (Nico), Cory Derrick (B/D Joseph), Eugenia Fragos (Reveka), Melita Jurisic (Maria), Alex Lanipekun (Red), Francois Lebrun (Leah), Ewen Leslie (Isaac), Ilianna Mavronmmati (Eleni), Kenneth Moraleda (Heng), Kodi Smit-McPhee (Josef), Yigal Naor (Syd), Thanos Samaras (Andreas), Danae Skiadi (Giulia), Olivia Stambouliah (Phoebe), William Zappa (Vassily)

Runtime: 84 mins

Classification: MA15+

Dave Griffiths’s ‘Dead Europe’ Review: Sometimes experimental cinema in Australia works. Directors such as Jim Stamatakos and Bill Mousoulis have created some wonderful films in the genre over the years, but then along came Hail, a film that showed only too well what happens when experimental cinema goes wrong. Well fans of Aussie experimental cinema rejoice because the genre is again back on track with Dead Europe a great little film that has the audience’s attention from start to finish.

Based on a novel by Christos Tsiolkas it tells the story of Isaac (Ewen Leslie – Suspended, TV’S Devil’s Dust) a Greek Australian who despite the warnings of his mother decides to visit Europe for the first time after the death of his father, Vassily (William Zappa – Redd Inc., TV’S Devil’s Dust).

Once in Greece Isaac travels with his cousin Giulia (Danae Skiadi – The Boy And The Tree, TV’S 4) and her friend, Andreas (Thanos Samaras – Tied Red Thread, Homeland). Everywhere they go they hear about the supposed curse that is supposedly on Isaac’s family because of Vassily. Soon Isaac finds himself unable to contact his brother Nico (Marton Csokas – Dream House, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) and realizes he is being haunted by Josef (Kodi Smit-McPhee – ParaNorman, Let Me In).

Dead Europe isn’t a film for everybody. Director Tony Krawitz (The Tall Man, TV’S All Saints) takes the film into some pretty dark areas. Isaac’s homosexuality is seen in graphic detail, as is a threesome between himself, Guilia and Andreas, but none of this is done for shock value and it really does move the storyline along.

What works wonderfully well with Dead Europe is the fact that the audience is given no insight into what is actually happening, and as a result you are just as in the dark as Isaac is. You find yourself desparately trying to work out whether or not the ‘curse’ is real and you will really rack your brain to try and figure out what the whole storyline around Josef is all about. What makes Dead Europe an even better watch is that Tony Krawitz also uses some creative shots and sequences to get the story up onto the screen.

Acting wise the entire cast are standouts. Ewen Leslie and Marton Csokas will be warranting some award nominations come award seasons while they are well supported by Danae Skiadi who really announces herself as an actor with a big future ahead of her. The other big surprise is Kodi Smit-McPhee, films such as Let Me In proved just how good this young actor could be, but with Dead Europe you feel that he takes another massive step forward in his career.

Dead Europe will have a few people scratching their heads but it is certainly well worth a look.

Other Dead Europe Reviews By Subculture Writers:http://www.helium.com/items/2384828-movie-reviews-dead-europe-2012

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

IMDB Rating: Dead Europe (2012) on IMDb