ABR Arts Film

Queen of the Desert

Dion Kagan
Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Queen of the Desert recreates the life and times of British colonial explorer, cartographer, writer, and eventually Foreign Office adviser, Gertrude Bell (Nicole Kidman), whose intimate knowledge of Bedouin culture played a key role in the re-mapping of the Middle East after the collapse of ...

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Scorsese (Australian Centre for the Moving Image)

Andrew Nette
Friday, 27 May 2016

Scorsese, currently showing at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne, is not exactly the exhibition that is advertised, and that is a very good thing. Martin Scorsese's career has stretched over half a century and involves nearly sixty films. Yet anyone who has seen advance press ...

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Marguerite and Florence Foster Jenkins

Ian Dickson
Wednesday, 20 April 2016

As with London buses, one waits for ages for a film based on the life of that vocal phenomenon Florence Foster Jenkins (1868–1944), and then two arrive simultaneously. Add to the mix Maggie Smith's Miss Shepherd in The Lady in the Van and it seems to be open season on eccentric ladies of ...

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The Daughter ★★★★

Kim Wilkins
Thursday, 10 March 2016

Ahandful of storylines recur in the family drama genre. The premise of an individual returning home, with a secret that threatens to disrupt the equilibrium of a family unit, after a period of self-imposed exile in order to fulfil filial obligations is well established, if not always predictable ...

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The Lady in the Van ★★★1/2

Peter Rose
Monday, 29 February 2016

The Lady in the Van may be a great comic character, but she is one of the unlikelier Britons ever to earn a blue plaque in her honour. Yet one now adorns the façade of 23 Gloucester Crescent, the London address that she besieged for fifteen years. Alan Bennett – her landlord of sorts ...

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Trumbo ★★★1/2

Dennis Altman
Friday, 19 February 2016

In 1950 a number of Hollywood screenwriters, including Dalton Trumbo, were sentenced to almost a year's imprisonment for contempt of Congress. Their 'crime' was a failure to answer questions from the House Un-American Activities Committee about their involvement with the Communist ...

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Brooklyn ★★★★

Morag Fraser
Monday, 08 February 2016

Film publicity is rarely subtle, so don't see Brooklyn if you are looking for the love-triangle tearjerker that its release poster promises. A film with its source in the spare, luminous writing of Colm Tóibín – as perceptive about women as any man writing – is never going to be standard Hollywood ...

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Spotlight ★★★★★

Barney Zwartz
Thursday, 21 January 2016

Often I am not proud of my profession, but there are times – usually when looking beneath the stones that shore up the established order – when journalists change the world for the better. The uncovering of the extent of sexual abuse of children, particularly by Catholic priests, is ...

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Looking For Grace ★★★

Eloise Ross
Thursday, 21 January 2016

As with many fine Australian films, Looking For Grace opens with arid, spectacular landscape. Aerial shots of remote two-lane highways highlight expanses of blonde dirt, granite, and shrubbery across the Western Australian wheat belt, where the film was shot on location. These colours are ...

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Carol ★★★1/2

Andrea Goldsmith
Friday, 08 January 2016

It is a Hollywood staple: C meets T; they fall in love; obstacles stand in their way (a husband, a boyfriend, but most particularly the attitudes of the 1950s); obstacles are mostly overcome, and C and T march happily into the future together. In Todd Haynes's film, Cate Blanchett plays Carol, a ...

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