Monthly Archives: May 2021

Stan, Australia’s unrivalled home of original productions, today unveiled the official trailer for the upcoming Stan Original Series Eden – and confirmed the eight-part mystery drama will premiere Friday, 11th June only on Stan, with all episodes available at once.

To watch and share the trailer, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0LOYAPh3es

From the creators of Skins and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries and written by an all-female writing team, Eden was shot on location in the stunning Northern Rivers region of New South Wales andstars Australian up-and-comers BeBe Bettencourt (The Dry) and Sophie Wilde (Bird),alongside Keiynan Lonsdale (The Flash), Cody Fern (American Horror Story), TV Week Gold Logie Award-winner Samuel Johnson (Molly) and Christopher James Baker (True Detective).

The acclaimed Australian cast also features Rachael Blake (Cleverman), Leeanna Walsman (Penguin Bloom), Simon Lyndon (Mystery Road), Maggie Kirkpatrick (The Letdown), Alexandria Steffensen (Happy Feet), Cassandra Sorrell (Her Own Music), Mark Leonard Winter (The Dressmaker), Claude Jabbour (Stateless), Geneviève Lemon (Ladies in Black), Benedict Hardie (Stan Original Series The Commons), Thom Green (Camp), Hunter Page-Lochard (Cleverman) and Dustin Clare (Spartacus franchise).

The mystery of Eden unfolds over eight thrilling episodes and follows high-achieving 20-year-old Scout (Sophie Wilde), who returns home to the beach community of Eden after her first year at Juilliard, the prestigious New York performing arts school, to find her enigmatic best friend Hedwig (BeBe Bettencourt) indefinably changed.

On a drug-fuelled night out, Scout confesses her burgeoning romantic and sexual feelings for Hedwig. Tensions escalate throughout the night and culminate in a violent struggle. Scout blacks out. When she wakes up with no memory of the evening’s end, Hedwig is gone.

Across the series, we track backwards through Hedwig’s summer and forwards to Scout’s desperate investigation into her friend’s disappearance – triggering revelation after revelation about the lives of Eden’s inhabitants that will change the town forever.

An exploration of human relationships through the lens of sex and desire, Eden was written by series creator, executive producer and writer Vanessa Gazy (Highway), alongside Jess Brittain (Clique), Anya Beyersdorf (Shakespeare Now), Clare Sladden (Freudian Slip) and Penelope Chai (Other People’s Problems).

Created in collaboration with Every Cloud Productions’ Fiona Eagger and Deb Cox (Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries), and the creator of the UK cult hit Skins, Balloon Entertainment’s Bryan ElsleyEden is produced by Fiona McConaghy (Stan Original Series The Gloaming) and directed by John Curran (Stan Original Series Bloom), Mirrah Foulkes (Judy & Punch) and Peter Andrikidis (Janet King). All eight episodes of the series have been shot by award-winning cinematographer Geoffrey Hall (Stan Original Series Bloom).

The Stan Original Series Eden is produced by Every Cloud Productions and Balloon Entertainment. Major production investment from Screen Australia in association with Screen NSW. Financed with support from all3media International, who is the global distribution partner on the series.

The Stan Original Series Eden premieres 11 June only on Stan, with all episodes available at once.

Australia’s national museum of screen culture, ACMI, has today unveiled the internationally acclaimed exhibition Disney: The Magic of Animation, celebrating nearly 100 years of the iconic studio’s creations. Shown for the first time in the Southern Hemisphere as part of the Melbourne Winter Masterpieces series, a Victorian Government initiative delivered through Visit Victoria.

Curated from a staggering 65 million original artworks housed at the Walt Disney Animation Research Library in Los Angeles, 500 carefully selected pieces – including sketches, drawings, paintings and concept art – comprise this once-in-a-lifetime exposition, which pulls back the curtain on the magic that goes into making some of the world’s most iconic films.

These rarely seen works highlight the detailed development of Disney’s most beloved animations – from Mickey Mouse’s first talkie Steamboat Willie (1928), through to the groundbreaking Fantasia (1940) and the universally celebrated Frozen (2013) – while highlighting the extraordinary evolution of animation techniques which the studio pioneered. The Melbourne iteration will also debut never-before-exhibited artwork from the Studio’s newest release Raya and the Last Dragon (2021).

“We’re delighted to open Disney: The Magic of Animation – our first major exhibition since reopening our transformed museum,” said ACMI Director CEO, Katrina Sedgwick OAM. “Disney has enchanted audiences across the world, with the universal fondness for beloved classics just as strong as the enthusiasm for modern masterpieces. It’s so special to be able to bring an exhibition to Australia that will resonate so strongly with audiences of all ages and all cultures and will be a source of joy for so many.”

“Part of The Walt Disney Company’s local and loved strategy is to create new opportunities to share our unique and global stories with local audiences. This is at the heart of everything we do to entertain, connect and inspire. We are incredibly excited to share the Disney: The Magic of Animation exhibition with the people of Melbourne at the iconic ACMI museum, in the centre of the city. Bringing this exhibition to Australian shores invites guests to connect with the depth and breadth of our stories, and beloved characters in a more relevant, and meaningful way. We hope that those who attend will be delighted and inspired by the artistry showcased, bringing to life our Disney stories and its magic, here in Australia,” said Kylie Watson-Wheeler, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, The Walt Disney Company Australia & New Zealand.

“We are so excited to be opening our exhibition at ACMI and sharing these treasures from the Walt Disney Animation Research Library collection with Australian audiences. The exhibition features behind the scenes production artworks which were created during the development of our Disney animated films. Guests will have a rare opportunity to see how the film makers and artists develop our stories and work through different ideas and concepts along the way to creating the films we know so well. The artworks are inspiring and touching and show the diversity of artistic talents that go into the making of our films. We hand selected these artworks from our collection of over 65 million works, to give guests the special experience of going behind the scenes at the Walt Disney Animation Studios,” added Kristen McCormick, Art Exhibitions & Conservation Manager of Walt Disney Animation Research Library.

“From Mickey Mouse to The Lion King, no matter your age – the wonderful world of Disney has reached us all, I encourage Victorians to visit this Australian-first exhibition at ACMI this winter. Disney: The Magic of Animation is set to be a blockbuster – not only will we see Victorians filing in to see it, it will also attract visitors from around the country which is exactly what we need as Victoria continues its recovery,” said Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson.

Lauded across the globe, from Paris to Tokyo, Seoul to Singapore, Disney: The Magic of Animation is a remarkable compilation of artworks by the creative team of artists and film makers at the Walt Disney Animation Studios. It will spark joy, curiosity and nostalgia in visitors young and old.

The opening of Disney: The Magic of Animation is the first time a major exhibition has taken place since the museum’s $40 million redevelopment, backed by the Victorian Government.

Disney: The Magic of Animation opens at ACMI today. Tickets can be purchased online at acmi.net.au

Summary:  In the puppet state of Manchukuo in the 1930s, four Communist party special agents, after returning to China, embark on a secret mission. Sold out by a traitor, the team find themselves surrounded by threats on all sides.

Year: 2021

Cinema Release Dates: 1st May 2021 (Australia), 30th April 2021 (USA)

VOD Release Dates: TBA

Country: China

Director: Yimou Zhang

Screenwriter: Yongxian Quan

Cast: Jiayin Lei, Naiwen Lei, Haocun Liu, Hailu Qin, Yi Sha, Ailei Yu, Hewei Yu, Hanyu Zhang, Yi Zhang, Yawen Zhu

Running Time: 120 mins

Classification: MA15+ (Australia)

OUR CLIFF WALKERS REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ Cliff Walkers Review:

As a film lover I have never really been much of a James Bond fan. As a kid I can remember sitting down with my father and watching Bond films with him. Dad was a Bond connoisseur and I remember sitting there wishing I could get as much enjoyment out of them as he seemed to. But I never did, instead all I could ever see was a cheesy character in a world that never seemed real.

As a result when I was growing into a film lover myself I rarely gave much acknowledgment to spy films in general. That as it turned out was a pretty stupid thing to do because as I have found out over the years there are some brilliant spy films out there that don’t feature Bond, what have I also learnt though is that I prefer my spy films to be more on the realistic side of things.

When it comes to realism you can’t go past the brand new Chinese spy thriller Cliff Walkers. Set in Northern China during the 1930s it tells the story of four spies sent behind the Japanese enemy lines to conduct a mission that will allow the world to see the Chinese people’s suffering.

The group led by Zhang Zianchen (Zhang Yi – The Sacrifice) soon finds themselves in a position where they no longer who they can trust. This tightens the bond between Wang Yu (Qin Hailu – Return Ticket), Chu Liang (Zhu Yawen – Red Sorghum) and Xiao Lan (Liu Haocun – One Second) but also makes every move they make dangerous, especially when they find themselves separated and having to try think what they ruthless enemy will do next.

Director Yimou Zhang (House Of Flying Daggers) does an amazing job bringing a naturalistic style to this film. The scenes shot in deep snow look so real as an audience member you find yourself shivering and even the car chases involving historical cars look sensational on the big screen – and while Hollywood directors often go easy on historical cars Zhang does not.

What lifts this film to a whole new level though is the suspensefulness that creeps through this film from start to finish. From the moment the four agents land in Northern China their lives are in danger and it shows on the screen. Watching the film you find yourself trying to guess whether the next person they meet is bad or good, and to the credit of the screenplay the film never gives that away until it absolutely needs to. The result is some wonderful ‘golden-age-of-cinema’ moments when characters suddenly reveal a gun and their true colours.

I was also amazed by some of the acting performances in the film. Yu Hewei (Three Kingdoms) is sensational as the ambiguous Zhou Yi and part of the fun of this film is trying to work out whether he is good or bad. There is also a stand-out performance by Liu Haocan who brilliantly plays the innocent but deadly Xiao Lan – so interesting is her character that you almost wish the film’s producers would do some spin-offs centring around her.

I feel that I do have to warn people that there are some hard to watch scenes in Cliff Walkers. Some of the torture sequences may be hard for some audience members to watch, but if you are an avid fan of thrillers then this is one film that you certainly shouldn’t miss.

Dave’s rating Out Of 5

Average Subculture Rating:

IMDB Rating:

Impasse (2021) on IMDb

Other Subculture Cliff Walkers Reviews:

N/A

Trailer:

Tom Hardy returns to the big screen as the lethal protector Venom, one of MARVEL’s greatest and most complex characters. Directed by Andy Serkis, the film also stars Michelle Williams, Naomie Harris and Woody Harrelson, in the role of the villain Cletus Kasady/Carnage.

The film is set for release in Australian cinemas on September 16th.

Summary:  After a one-night stand, a successful married man finds himself entangled in a cunning police detective’s latest investigation.

Year: 2020

Cinema Release Dates: 6th May 2021 (Australia), 18th December 2020 (USA)

VOD Release Dates: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Deon Taylor

Screenwriter: David Loughery

Cast: Oakley Bull (Haley Younger/Haley Older), Mike Colter (Rafe Grimes), Sam Daly (Officer Stallman), Michael Ealy (Derrick Tyler), Kali Hawk (Micaela), David Hofin (Officer Lowe), Rasneet Kaur (Lira), Damaris Lewis (Tracie Tyler), Sabina Mach (Sabina), Compton Menace (Bumpy), Geoffrey Owens (Bill Cranepool), Danny Pino (Carter Heywood), Filipp Revega (Officer Mike), Kirill Revega (Officer John), Lance Stephenson (himself), Hilary Swank (Detective Val Quinlan), Tyrin Turner (Tyrin Abenathy)

Running Time: 102 mins

Classification: MA15+ (Australia), R (USA)

OUR FATALE REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ Fatale Review:

Back in the 1990s and early 2000s Hollywood went through a phase where it loved to mix ‘sex-up’ it’s crime thrillers. The result was classic films like Basic Instinct and of course every teenage boy’s dream – Wild Things. Of course though like all Hollywood phase for every sexy crime thriller that hit its mark there were another twenty that fell from the way-side… and you can find most of those ones in the DVD section of The Reject Shop these days.

To me, director Deon Taylor’s (Black And Blue) feels like a throwback to those films. The film centres around the seductive Detective Val Quinlan (Hilary Swank – Boys Don’t Cry) who ends up in bed with Derrick Tyler (Michael Ealy – Think Like A Man) when the two’s paths cross in the city of sin – Las Vegas.

What Derrick doesn’t tell Val is that he is married and she only finds that out about him when she is called out to the scene of an attempted murder that just happens to happen at the house of Derrick and his wife Tracie (Damaris Lewis – The Rewrite). The high-rolling Derrick is stunned that somebody has tried to murder him and he is beyond nervous of that fact that Val is now in contact with his wife.

The worst enemy of this film is its trailer. I’ll admit that I enjoyed Fatale as a film but having seen the trailer before I saw the film I had some of my experience spoilt by the fact that I already knew too much of what was going to happen. Deon Taylor and screenwriter David Loughery (Lakeview Terrace) have created a good crime thriller with all the right twists and turns to keep their audience guessing but sadly some of those reveals have already been revealed in the trailer.

Still as far as crime thrillers go Fatale does work pretty well. There is enough suspense to make you wonder about nearly every character that is in Derrick’s life while cinematographer Dante Spinotti (Heat) captures some wonderful shots of the opulent house (and its views) that a majority of the film was shot in.

What I also enjoyed about Fatale was the performances of its leads. Hilary Swank looked like she was having a hell of a fun time playing the dangerous vixen while Michael Ealy takes a huge step forward in his career with a performance that more than shows that he was ready to take over the leading man status on a film.Fatale is a guilty pleasure film. It is the kind of film that I found myself enjoying while I was watching but it is one of those films where people are going to give you a funny look when you admit to liking it. It has suspense, some great twists and turns but I would seriously consider avoiding the trailer before you head into the cinema to watch it.

Dave’s rating Out Of 5

Average Subculture Rating:

IMDB Rating:

Fatale (2020) on IMDb

Other Subculture Fatale Reviews:

N/A

Trailer:

Summary:  17-year-old Zoe Hull uses her wits, survival skills, and compassion to fight for her life, and those of her fellow classmates, against a group of live-streaming school shooters.

Year: 2020

Cinema Release Dates: TBA

VOD Release Dates: 5th May 2021 (Australia), 14th January 2021 (USA)

Country: USA

Director: Kyle Rankin

Screenwriter: Kyle Rankin

Cast: Sahara Ale (Dawn), Cyrus Arnold (Kip Quade), Pierce Atchison (Chaz Harding), Nate Boyer (Commander Riggins), Eli Brown (Tristan Voy), Tori Carew (Katie), Demeris Comeger (Keith), Barbara Crampton (Mrs. Crawford), Catherine Davis (Anna Jelick), Braeden De La Garza (Connor Cope), Mary Deese (Mrs. Greene), David Docobo (Will), Desarae A. Dotson (Claire), Linda Eicher (Barbara), Sydney Gilbertson (Grace Evans), Hanna Glen (Jan), Thomas Jane (Todd Hull), Shelley Kaehr (Ms. Voy), Sebastian Konarski (Officer LaBelle), CG Lewis (Roy Moake), Isabel May (Zoe Hull), Shelby Mayes (Cora Brenner), April McCulloch (Lauren Cope), Joe Michaely (Mr. Yates), Radha Mitchell (Jennifer Hull), Britton Sear (Chris Jelick), Olly Sholotan (Lewis Washington), Kenneisha Thompson (Deputy Monique), Jackie Tien (Missy Walsh), Cindy Vela (Ms. Nunez), Treat Williams (Sheriff Tarsy), Tom Williamson (Mr. Coombs)

Running Time: 109 mins

Classification: MA15+ (Australia), 15 (UK)

OUR RUN HIDE FIGHT REVIEWS

David Griffiths’ Run Hide Fight Review:

Dave’s rating Out Of 5

Average Subculture Rating:

IMDB Rating:

Run Hide Fight (2020) on IMDb

Other Subculture Run Hide Fight Reviews:

N/A

Trailer:

Umbrella Entertainment in association with Monster Pictures will release the most ambitious sci-fi film ever produced in Australia, OCCUPATION RAINFALL, to home entertainment on June 16.

Following a major theatrical release earlier this year that saw OCCUPATION RAINFALL play in over 200 cinemas across Australia, Luke Sparke’s highly anticipated follow-up to the 2018 feature OCCUPATION is finally headed home to Blu-ray, DVD & Digital.

A film of such epic scale as OCCUPATION RAINFALL is deserving of the deluxe treatment on home entertainment and Umbrella Entertainment & Monster Pictures answer the call with a Collector’s Edition Blu-ray. Loaded with Special Features, ranging from multiple Audio Commentary tracks to Deleted Scenes to Featurettes that take you behind-the-scenes of the film and much more, this is without a doubt the definitive release of OCCUPATION RAINFALL.

Blu-ray Special Features

• 2 x Audio Commentary Tracks
–with writer/director Luke Sparke
-with writer/director Luke Sparke, producers Carly Imrie & Carmel Imrie, actor Zac Garred and VFX Supervisor Alex Becconsall
• 8 x Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by writer/director Luke Sparke
-Montage/ Wessex & Amelia
-Alien Spy in the Base
-Wessex & Amelia Reunite
-Haye’s Room
-Wessex & Amelia
-To the Lost
-Matt Talks to Alison
-Matt Hears Baby Alison
• Behind-the-Scenes (Featurette)
• Making The Music – Attack on Sydney (Featurette)
• Red Carpet Premiere (Featurette)
• TV Spots
-15 Second Spot
-30 Second Spot
• Theatrical Trailer
• Reversible Sleeve Artwork

Blu-ray Specifications

• Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 (16×9)
• Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1