Kathryn Bigelow: Eclipsing the boys at their own game


Winner for Best Director and Best Pictur

Profile – Kathryn Bigelow: Eclipsing the boys at their own game

Article: Actor Focus: Luke Thornley


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Article: Actor Focus: Luke Thornley

Interview: Alex McAleer (Fringe World)


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Interview: Alex McAleer (Fringe World) 

Article: Alicia Vikander – The Woman From S.W.E.D.E.N


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Article: Alicia Vikander – The Woman From S.W.E.D.E.N

Interview: Fringe World Fix – Ali Brice from Graeme of Thrones


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Interview: Fringe World Fix – Ali Brice from Graeme of Thrones 

Article: Sue Brooks and Radha Mitchell Go Walkabout with Looking For Grace


5. LOOKING FOR GRACE Radha Mitchell (Denise), Odessa Young (Grace)

Article: Sue Brooks and Radha Mitchell Go Walkabout with Looking For Grace

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Article: WAM and the Rise of Kucka

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Article: Fat Freddy’s Drop Back Themselves With New Material

Article: Graeme Richards – Painting A Picture


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Article: Graeme Richards – Painting A Picture

Article – Shane Jacobson: Australia’s Leading Man & Loveable Larrikin


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Article – Shane Jacobson: Australia’s Leading Man & Loveable Larrikin

Interview: Sean Mackay (Black Stone From the Sun)


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Interview: Black Stone From the Sun

Interview: Nick Owen


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Interview: Nick Owen

Article: Iggy Azalea – Anything But the Realest


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Article: Iggy Azalea – Anything But the Realest

Zack Snyder’s Worst to Best Movies


Article:

Zack Snyder’s Worst to Best Movies

Tom Cruise’s 10 Greatest Roles


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Article:

Tom Cruise’s 10 Greatest Roles

Christopher Nolan (filmmaker) Profile – Grand Scale Filmmaking


Occupation: Director, writer, producer

Born: July 30th, 1970

Nationality: British (UK)

Works: The Dark Knight trilogy (Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises), Memento, Following, Insomnia, The Prestige, Inception

Christopher Nolan throughout his career has tirelessly worked to re-create the idea of authorship. His modern and expansive cinematic scope in every frame has proven his worth as one of the most influential and popular directors in modern cinema. Nolan, along with his brother and writing partner Jonathan, continually strive to break the bonds of modern Hollywood cinema, with The Dark Knight and Inception instantly considered to be modern masterpieces. His unique abilities with cinematography and stunt sequences prove the existence of artistic vision within modern action cinema.

Christopher Nolan.

Christopher Nolan.

In his interpretation of the Batman legend, his penchant for creating an aura of realism out of fantastical elements has created a gritty, terrifying yet culturally relevant depiction of a famously fantastical character. Nolan’s control over his works is proven in his militarised origin story and development of believable cult figures. Batman Begins and The Dark Knight have taken Bruce Wayne, an arrogant yet determined warrior, and built him into a cunning, fearless and selfless saviour of Gotham. Batman’s universe (dubbed the ’Nolanverse’ due to his intelligent style) is a gravely sombre yet recognisable scene of post 9/11 threats and heroes developing a desire to protect those to need them. Nolan Creates a realistic universe out of beautiful yet haunting locations such as the maze-like structure of Chicago city streets, intricate photo realistic sets and alluring perspective tricks through miniature cityscapes.

Nolan on set.

Nolan on set (The Dark Knight trilogy).

His use of realism in film-making has created an authenticity rarely seen in the era of digital/blue- screen technology. Creating action set pieces through stunt work and elaborate, story-boarded set pieces, the creation of sequences such as the rotating hotel ceiling fight in Inception and the truck chase/flip through Gotham streets in The Dark Knight are developed with a seamless visceral quality not explored since the renaissance of practical effects in the 1960’s/70’s/80’s with gripping formalist cinema such Alien/AliensThe Terminator2001: A Space Odyssey and The Fly. His maze-like structures and other symbolic/visual elements reflect the intricacies of his eye for ground-breaking elements of film production. The idea of several layers inside the subconscious mind is an intricate and stylish concept explored through heist, film noir and chase film elements. The art-deco style created in each layer of Nolan’s visual splendour involves a strict use of smooth colour patterns/tones, symmetry and the composition of important symbolic foreground and background elements; creating multiple dimensions through the intricacies of multi-layered city streets and skyscrapers.

Trademarks: Epic scopes, writes with brother Jonathan Nolan, recurring cast members, non-linear timelines

Nolan on The Prestige.

Nolan & Christian Bale (The Prestige).

His use of symbolism to illustrate an important and original narrative structure can be seen in his first studio feature Memento, a thought-provoking thriller executed with complexity and based on Jonathan Nolan’s short story. Photographs and tattoos, illustrating Guy Pearce’s path through a decaying life of short term amnesia, symbolise his determination in tracing his forgotten steps, hoping to find his wife’s murderer. Whether it’s one man battling the villainy of a post 9/11 criminal world, Leo DiCaprio struggling to expel his love from professional duties inside his fractured subconscious, Al Pacino’s erratic mind due to his condition in Insomnia  and an attraction to stalking people on the street in Following, Nolan uses his expansive scope to illustrate the gravity of his characters’ disturbed situations. His non-linear storytelling and cross-cutting create a contrast between multiple realities and the conflicting subconscious; illustrated by the rivalry between Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman in The Prestige, building throughout this story of the dangerously competitive nature of human beings.

Thematic, visual and symbolic relevance in film and popular culture has classified Nolan as one of the defying film-makers of this generation. Whether its the electrifying illusion of the transported man, a slowly developing superhero/vigilante origin story or Heath Ledger’s Oscar worthy portrayal of the Joker, Nolan has given birth to many authentic and thought provoking examples of ingenuity in modern cinema.

Interview:

Tony Scott (filmmaker) Profile – Danger Zone!


Occupation: Director, producer

Born: June 21st, 1944

Nationality: British (UK)

Works: Top Gun, Crimson Tide, The Last Boy Scout, True Romance, Enemy of the State, Spy Game, Man on Fire, Deja Vu, The Taking of Pelham 123, Unstoppable

Since stepping out of his brother Ridley’s shadow with the revered neo-noir True Romance in 1993, Tony Scott has proven himself an influential yet polarising auteur filmmaker. With his style a prime example for many of a director’s vision distracting from the original story, others view his style as a step ahead of many crime/action film directors.

Tony Scott.

Tony Scott.

His style involves a mixture of several extreme editing and camera techniques. Considered a defining director in the modern Hollywood style of filmmaking, he continually creates the perfect tone when tackling the explicit subjects he regularly approaches. In the 2004 revenge flick Man on Fire, detailing the story of a girl kidnapped by a dangerous Mexican gang, Scott focuses on the emotional impact of this situation, rather than the action film elements of the narrative. The visuals in Man on Fire, and many other films in Scott’s filmography, reflect both the intensity of the situation and the damaged mindset of the lead character. In Man on Fire, Denzel Washington’s character Creasy is a former alcoholic and gun for hire. Frequent slow- motion shots of a bullet casing hitting Creasy’s hand and narrowly missing the slow reaction of his fingers, illustrates a shockingly distant yet slowly recovering mindset, placing him outside the realm of normality.

Tony Scott & Jerry Bruckheimer.

Scott & Jerry Bruckheimer.

Scott provides a gritty, unrefined insight into every situation. The non-linear, parallel timeline crossing actioner Deja Vu proves the effect of Scott’s ever evolving editing techniques. Cutting between Washington’s character speeding in between traffic in the past, and his communication with colleagues in the present, represents the lack of time his character has to prevent a sickening 9/11-esque terrorist attack. His stylised action is also of debate and careful consideration. The use of slo- mo and/or pulsating soundtrack illustrate the gravity of the situation. The hotel room shoot-out at the end of True Romance has been copied by many aspiring film-makers, aiming for the same effect Scott achieved. The chilling shots of white feathers and bullet ridden cops and drug dealers flying through the air created a violent shootout handled with an artistic vision not seen before in action cinema at its height. The low lighting and shaky cam style of representing a realistic situation has also influenced many film-makers, eagerly using their influences to create an emotional connection. Daniel Espinosa, director of the recent Denzel Washington action film Safe House, used Scott’s grainy, unrefined visual effects in the film to illustrate Ryan Reynolds’ character’s emotional torment when brought into a world of espionage and brutal murder in the heart of a rundown South Africa.

Trademarks: Red baseball cap, Kinetic visual flourishes, recurring cast members, camera pans

Scott & Denzel Washington.

Scott & Denzel Washington.

Washington has collaborated with Scott in many films including Man on FireDeja VuCrimson TideThe Taking of Pelham 123 and Unstoppable. His dramatic range and charisma may elevate the quality of several of their collaborations, but its Scott’s style that illustrates the true emotional torment of many of Washington’s intriguing characters. Both him and Ridley Scott regularly collaborate with A-list actors, creating many electrifying and alluring performances out of their appealing casts. The 1986 cult classic Top Gun for example, despite today being considered a plethora of homosexual undertones (mostly due to the laughable shirtless beach volleyball scene), Tom Cruise’s rebellious jet pilot Maverick is still idolised as a cheesy yet determined pop culture icon; forever riding the ‘highway to the danger zone’. Despite his recent films, such as The Taking of Pelham 123, Domino and Unstoppable, being little more  than technical experiments with a threadbare narrative, Scott can definitely call his schizophrenic technical style his own.

Despite his notorious cinematography and editing tricks infuriating some, he is one Hollywood director still perfecting his trademarks with each film. From Top Gun to Man on Fire, the British-born filmmaker has garnered immense acclaim from guilty pleasure efforts.

Interview:

Ridley Scott (filmmaker) Profile – The Game Changer


Occupation: Director, producer

Born: November 30th, 1937

Nationality: British (UK)

Works: Blade Runner, Alien, Thelma & Louise, Gladiator, Black Hawk Down, Matchstick Men, Kingdom of Heaven, American Gangster, Robin HoodPrometheus

“Are you not entertained!” shouts Russell Crowe as Maximus in the 2000 Academy Award winning historical epic Gladiator. This question may be frequently asked by its director Ridley Scott, as his direction strives for perfection with each film. Ridley and his brother Tony Scott are two of the most influential directors in modern cinema. Though it can be argued their recent work may not match their earlier groundbreaking achievements, they are sought-after genre directors who have created and augmented a fascinating array of unique trademarks. When people question the relevance of auteur theory, there is no doubt either one of them will come to mind.

Ridley Scott & Russell Crowe (Gladiator).

Scott and Damon Lindelof, co-creator/writer of Lost, have recently sparked many heated online debates about the ambiguity of their sci-fi blockbuster Prometheus. What some may consider plot holes, others see as a smart use of sci-fi elements; creating bold, philosophical questions without answers. Scott has used ambiguity in many of his films, developing a true sense of mystery. Many of his films use ambiguity to question the viewer’s involvement in the film viewing process. The ending of Blade Runner for example is one of the most discussed scenes in cinema history. Harrison Ford’s character Rick Deckard as far as we know may or may not be simply a tough persona used to shield himself from emotional torment. Scott creates these debates not to frustrate, but to create though provoking discussion. Ambiguity is not only a defining trait of his now acclaimed work but has led to some of the most influential films in pop culture. It has separated Scott’s films from mind numbing modern sci-fi desperate to answer every question with nonsensical answers for a target demographic.

Ridley Scott & Harrison Ford (Blade Runner).

Ridley Scott & Harrison Ford (Blade Runner).

With a number of Scott’s films critically derided upon release but considered groundbreaking decades later, will the same happen to his recent thought provoking, ambitious, violent, enigmatic and ambiguous sci-fi horror flick? History suggests that only time will tell. In the 30 year gap between Scott’s sci-fi adventures, he has approached different genres eagerly. Genre defining works of art and popcorn chomping blockbusters such as Thelma and LouiseBlack Hawk DownMatchstick MenKingdom of Heaven and American Gangster have shown Scott’s directorial elements used outside his phenomenal realm of dark, disturbing sci-fi with Alien and Blade Runner. Film Noir and westerns are clearly important to Scott. With Matchstick Men boasting an energetic Nicholas Cage performance, a femme fatale, a bag of money an troubled criminal minds behind every operation; these noir elements prove the existence of film/neo-noir as relevant to modern film-making.

Trademark: Female action heroes, recurring cast members, set-piece storyboards, epic scope

Ridley Scott & Noomi Rapace (Prometheus).

Ridley Scott & Noomi Rapace (Prometheus).

Scott loves a true message illustrating the merit behind his entertaining and subtle storytelling. His love for powerful yet sensitive female characters proves to be an alluring convention. His characters are important for the image of feminism in cinema, seeing them as regular people willing to break out of their chains and achieve their own sense of freedom. Continuing this idea in Prometheus with Noomi Rapace’s character Elizabeth Shaw as the leader of the ill fated expedition, his presumed attraction to Rapace’s ass-kicking and gothic computer hacker Lisbeth Salander in the Swedish version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, now defines Rapace as the heroin of modern cinema. Thelma and Louise, Ripley, and G. I. Jane are also part of Scott’s penchant for femininity. Thelma and Louise’s race to the end is another example of ambiguity in Scott’s filmography. Following the classic western convention of the ‘race to the border’, the ending of Thelma and Louise suggests an escape from men controlling the two main characters throughout a mediocre existence.

With Prometheus‘ ambiguous questions, based on important themes of philosophy, sexual reproduction, birth and death, and creationism, being handled with such depth, Scott’s film-making techniques and symbols have once again proven to be a major talking point. Scott’s smart, sensitive and ambiguous storytelling, despite mixed responses, has always inspired thought-provoking discussion about not only our connection to his characters, but his level of determination in consistently creating bold, violent and creative cinema.

Interview: