Brian McFarlane

Brian McFarlane reviews 'Dirt Music' by Tim Winton

Brian McFarlane
03 June 2019

Talk about unlikely associations. My first response to the opening chapter of Tim Winton’s latest novel was how its sense of a life at a standstill, awaiting some new impulse, reminded m More

Brian McFarlane reviews 'Performing Hamlet: Actors in the modern age' by Jonathan Croall

Brian McFarlane
26 December 2018

'It is arguably the most famous play on the planet’, writes Jonathan Croall in his introduction to this absorbing study of how the play and its eponym have gripped the imagination across More

Peterloo ★★★★

Brian McFarlane
20 November 2018

What I’ve come to expect of a new Mike Leigh film is, above all, the unexpected. His first feature, Bleak Moments (1971), of which there were quite a few in that contemporary st More

2018 Australian Book Review Film Survey

25 May 2018

We invited some writers, film critics, and film professionals to nominate their favourite film – not The Greatest Film Ever Sold, but one that matters to them personally.

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Varun Ghosh reviews 'Making a Meal of It: Writing about film' by Brian McFarlane

Varun Ghosh
25 May 2018

One of my favourite podcasts at the moment is called The Rewatchables. It deconstructs movies (mainly from the 1990s and 2000s) and offers an enjoyable mix of amusement, nostalgia More

Darkest Hour ★★★★

Brian McFarlane
08 January 2018

Who knows why, but there have been at least three films in recent months focusing on the Dunkirk evacuation: Lone Scherfig’s Their Finest, Christopher Nolan’s magisterial More

Brian McFarlane reviews 'Anthony Powell: Dancing to the music of time' by Hilary Spurling

Brian McFarlane
21 December 2017

Readers of this review are warned that they are in the presence of an addict. Having read Anthony Powell’s monumental twelve-volume Dance to the Music of Time three times, I had More

Brian McFarlane reviews 'Balancing Acts: Behind the scenes at the National Theatre' by Nicholas Hytner

Brian McFarlane
27 October 2017

One of the most appropriate titles since Pride and Prejudice, Balancing Acts adroitly captures the drama and appeal of Nicholas Hytner’s account of his twelve years as More

2016 Arts Highlights of the Year

John Allison et al.
26 October 2016

To highlight Australian Book Review’s arts coverage and to celebrate some of the year’s memorable concerts, operas, films, ballets, plays, and art exhibitions, we invited a gr More

Brian McFarlane reviews 'Mad Dog Morgan' by Jake Wilson

Brian McFarlane
21 December 2015

The evocative Prologue to this book has a poetic precision that bodes well for its treatment of this too-long neglected film, and what follows more than answers such expectations.

Jake Wilson's analysis (resuscitation might be a better word) of the 1976 Australian bushranging adventure, More

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