- Australia (2008)
- Muriel's Wedding (1994)
- The Castle (1997)
- The Adventures of Priscilla: Queen of the Desert (1994)
- Finding Nemo (2003)
- Crocodile Dundee (1986)
- Mad Max Series (1979 - 2015)
- Red Dog (2011)
- Rabbit-Proof Fence (2002)
- Bran Nue Dae (2009)
- Paper Planes (2014)
- Tomorrow, When the War Began (2010)
- The Sapphires (2012)
- The Water Diviner (2014)
- Happy Feet (2006)
- The Black Balloon (2008)
- Looking for Alibrandi (2000)
- Tracks (2013)
As all of us Down Under kick back in our singlets, bathers and thongs, cracking open the first cold beverage of the day while we laze by the pool / beach / river; we ready ourselves for another ripper Australia Day. Good friends, good food, good fun. But for those who are unable to celebrate with us, and still want to feel the good old Aussie spirit, we've put together a list of the top Aussie films to whack on the telly today. So to all those celebrating in far off countries to those larrikins just keen to watch the fireworks tonight, here's a list of the films that make us feel Australian. Happy Australia Day everyone!
After his menacing (and now iconic) turn in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), there was arguably a lot of anticipation surrounding Adam Driver's first time hosting Saturday Night Live (1975) this weekend. And whilst the comedy show didn't make as good use of the actor as they probably could of, they did land a great spoof clip in 'Undercover Boss: Starkiller Base'.
If you are unfamiliar with the premise, Undercover Boss (2010) takes high-ranking officials from a business and inserts them in the lower levels of the company unbeknownst to the other workers, thus allowing the leaders to see how things really work from the ground up. In the SNL video, Driver's Kylo Ren therefore infiltrates the Starkiller base as a Radar Technician named Matt, equipped with 70's glasses and bleach blonde hair to mask his true identity.
Honestly, it's not only a very clever clip but also a highly amusing one too, from the way Driver mixes uncertainty and angst into the role to his delivery of lines like "Hearing Zack lost his son really struck a nerve with me. Especially because I was the one that killed him." So as you ready yourself for the long week of work ahead, remember that if you need a little pick me up, you can check out the video below for your daily dose of laughs.
“There’s a Starman waiting in the sky, he’d like to come and meet us, but he thinks he’d blow our minds.” In the wake of the late, great, David Bowie’s tragic passing this week at the age of 69 from cancer, there is perhaps no greater or more appropriate line to associate with the musical mastermind than this. For as sad and shocking as the news is, these lines will forever be a reminder of not only his ability to amaze us, but of the glorious legacy he leaves behind. Musician. Fashion Icon. Film Star. Activist for those struggling with their sexuality and identity. You name it, Bowie achieved it, and he did it all in style.
Born in Brixton, South London in 1947 to a working class family, Bowie scored his first hit at the tender age of twenty-two, with Space Oddity. What followed were career defining hits as glorious and eccentric as 'Life on Mars', 'Starman', 'Heroes', 'Let’s Dance', 'Rebel Rebel', and 'Changes'. And that’s without even mentioning his renowned collaboration with Queen on 'Under Pressure', which went on to claim the number one position on the UK charts in 1981. It wasn’t just the world of music that Bowie owned either though, with a move into films in the 1976 critically acclaimed feature The Man Who Fell to Earth, followed by ambitious and impressive turns in The Hunger (1983), The Last Temptation of Christ (1988) and of course the beloved Jim Henson picture Labyrinth (1986). With his role in the 1980 Broadway production of 'The Elephant Man', Bowie finally solidified his star as one of stage, screen, and song.
Ever since he began in the business in the 70’s, Bowie distinguished himself through not only the constant re-invention of his music, but in the lasting influence he had on the way the industry itself came to function. As pop became punk, and that flowed into new wave, hip-hop and electronic, Bowie’s mark was ever-present, as indelible as his sales numbers. Even his decision to change his name to avoid confusion with another icon of the time - Davy Jones of the Monkee’s, played into this re-invigoration, pushing him on to bigger and better monikers like Ziggy Stardust and Aladdin Zane. Pictures we will never forget. Persona’s that will never die.
It is a struggle, therefore, to find words to do a man of his standing justice. For in death, just as in life, Bowie owned his actions, unafraid and unrepentant of the secret he kept for over eighteen months. While many will go on to criticise him for not using his status to shed light on an important issue, others still will find comfort in the words of Tony Visconti, producer of his final album Blackstar, who stated; “He wanted to do it his way and he wanted to do it the best way. His death was no different from his life – a work of art.” So as we mourn this loss, let us also celebrate a life well-lived. A legacy that survives in the hearts of his family Iman Abdulmajid, Duncan Jones, and Alexandria Jones, and in those who will continue to listen to his music and watch his films. So Starman, return to space, and know that we’re glad you came and met us and blew our minds.
Most performers, when looking back over their life, have trouble finding even one distinguished role. This was a hardship veteran actor Alan Rickman never faced. The second British great to pass this week from cancer, strangely enough also at the age of 69, Rickman was a tour de force in the cinematic arena from the day he began as the infamous Hans Gruber in Die Hard (1988), all the way until his final performance in the drone-thriller Eye in the Sky (2015). Throughout this time he filled our world with the smoothest and snarkiest bass tenor ever put to screen, and made us realise even the worst in people in the world can be somewhat lovable. For that, we will be forever grateful.
Born in Acton, West London as the second of four children, Rickman was a late bloomer into the world of the silver screen. His father tragically passed away from lung cancer when he was only eight years old, leaving his single mother Margaret, to take care of the family. In his early days Rickman showed a keen interest in graphic design, obtaining a degree in the area from the Royal Academy of Art, before setting up his own company and design studio called Graphiti. As a 26-year-old Rickman's focus changed though and he entered a world he would never return from, applying to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and eventually working with the Royal Shakespeare Company. His breakout came just a few years later when he tread the boards in the Tony Award nominated play 'Les Liaisons Dangereuses'. It was his casting as the smooth and sly German terrorist Hans Gruber though, in one of the biggest blockbusters of that era - Die Hard (1988), which solidified his innate talent and unique charm. Most notably in his showdown on set over a refusal to throw actress Bonnie Bedelia to the floor, thus challenging the "woman as eternal-victim" stereotype Hollywood was prone to accept.
He continued this pro-active stance and thoughtfulness in a long and heralded career, breathing life into characters as vast and varied as cinema itself. From stealing hearts in Truly, Madly, Deeply (1990), to maniacally wielding swords against swashbuckling heroes in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991), the acclaimed British thespian found fans flocking to join his corner. He even served his time in cult classics such as Kevin Smith's Dogma (1999), and the weird and wacky Galaxy Quest (1999). If there was ever a point that Rickman's career came to a head though, it was with the decision to take on the role of Severus Snape in the Harry Potter (2001 - 2011) series. Eight films, ten years, and what feels like the blink of an eye passed, as Rickman became the icon for a generation of kids who felt more at home in the world of wizards, than they did in reality. Many have raised a wand in honour of their fallen hero in the last few days, and many a wand will continue to be raised in the years to come, as they introduce their kids, and grand-kids to the wonderful world he so graciously helped create.
So I leave you with one of the questions that have plagued fans since they heard the news of his passing just days ago. What do you say when the death of a beloved actor, who helped define your childhood, makes you realise that we all grow up, we all get old, and we all must say goodbye? So if there is anything that Alan Rickman should be remembered for, it is that he chose his roles not to stand-out, to show-off, or to invite glory upon himself. Instead he chose them because every character deserves a good performance - even the bad (Hans Gruber), the depressed (Metatron), or the misunderstood (Snape) ones. Because every character deserves some magic.
Out with the old and in with the new as they say. So as we bid our farewells to the blockbuster year that was 2015, we welcome with open arms the superhero smashdown that will be 2016. Now there's a lot to look forward to in this New Year, from the seven or so comic book flicks due out, to our return to Marlin, Nemo, and their blue-finned friend Dory's tranquil world under the sea. Magic and memories shall abound.
But before we get there I want to say a big thank-you to all those fans and followers who have stuck with Cinematicism throughout its first six months. It's been a tough but exceptional ride, and you certainly make it all worth it. From the long nights that turned into early mornings and everything in between, you've made me up my filmic game in ways I never would have imagined. Thank-you for your support, your praise, and yes, even your criticisms too. Every bit counts. So here's to another year just like it.
So with that, it's time to pull out the party poppers and crack open the champagne. Here's to 2016 and everything good that it brings! And, if you happen to be scared about what may lay ahead in the New Year, from how many times you may fall down, or fail, or just want to give up, I will leave here for you the wise words of wisdom Mark Watney speaks in The Martian (2015)...
"At some point, everything's gonna go south on you and you're going to say, this is it. This is how I end. Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work. That's all it is. You just begin. You do the math. You solve one problem and you solve the next one, and then the next. And if you solve enough problems, you get to come home."
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