- Buy, Swap & Sell: April 20
- Buy, Swap & Sell: April 19
- UFO sighting in Fawkner?
- Jim's movie cheat sheet - April 20
- New release movie reviews - April 17
- 'I just want a beer with my mates'
- Conscription or compulsory volunteering for jobless?
- Jim's cheat sheet - April 11
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What we're talking about
- Mick Wood on UFO sighting in Fawkner? Well, if you can't get in by boat..... more
- Nicholas on UFO sighting in Fawkner? Whatever the inhabitants of that thing are they're surely motion sick more
- Lynsey on UFO sighting in Fawkner? Pity you were using your iPhone (asper conversation on the radio). I have a camera on the raedy by my side in the car now ... more
- the serial pest on UFO sighting in Fawkner? Mmmm...dogs barking. Crickets chirping. A fleck in the sky. Sounds like a Fawkner family's been into some backyard moonshine. more
- tracy on UFO sighting in Fawkner? bulltwang first its moving not so fast across the sky and then its stays still not way up in the sky but about human height ... more
- Graeme on UFO sighting in Fawkner? Shared on Facebook Melbourne UFO group more
- james mason on 'I just want a beer with my mates' political correctness ????Sad day for our nation that cant even trust our proud men and woman of our defence force to have a ... more
- Steve on 'I just want a beer with my mates' BIGGEST AMOUNT OF BULL TISH I HAVE EVER HEARD. BEING EX SERVICE IT WAS AN HONOUR TO WEAR MY UNIFORM AND HAVE A FEW DRINKS ... more
- Lucinda on 'I just want a beer with my mates' Surely in RSL's it should be fine, but i agree not in a licence pub in the city ie young and jacksons type of thing. Weren't ... more
- JimmyJack on 'My son has a problem with porn' What a load of tosh, sorry Tom, wasn't able to hear the call so only going on from what is here. This Susan McLean sounds ... more
- ian on 'My son has a problem with porn' Lack of parental control. more
- David R on 'My son has a problem with porn' Should a government issued/sanction laptop come installed with the Government supported/paid-for Internet protection ... more
- Tony voorhaar on Man comes forward over dooring When are people and gov't going to learn bikes and cars don't mix. Get rid of the bikes. more
- Christine on Man comes forward over dooring Again the minority are the loudest. The roads are for cars, who pay to be on the roads. I feel sorry for the people ... more
- Dingoes Breakfast on Man comes forward over dooring No cyclist should be allowed to ride on public roads without paying 3rd party insurance to the government and registration ... more
- LukeB on Man comes forward over dooring Actually, that footage is exactly what happens when a bike rider kicks the door of a car, or punches a car driver ... more
- Luke on Man comes forward over dooring Bike riders are near impossible to see & they also don't watch where they are going or pre-empt any trouble. They are their ... more
- Joanne on Man comes forward over dooring There will be no winners here. 1. Should the taxi driver have been allowed to let a passenger depart the vehicle from that ... more
- Lee on Man comes forward over dooring They are all in the wrong here. Cyclist shouldn't have been riding in the gutter, but since she was she should have gone a ... more
- Lukew on Man comes forward over dooring I think the rider should bear some of the responsibility here. If I was riding my bike in that situation, I would be ... more
New release movie reviews - 10 January
HITCHCOCK ***1/2 (99 minutes) M
The unalloyed joy of seeing one of the greatest actors of all time hamming it up as one of the greatest directors of all time is but one of the delights offered by this cheeky, deeply affectionate pic. As "master of suspense" Alfred Hitchcock, Anthony Hopkins masters the master's jovial baritone and playful manner as he waddles around the Paramount set trying to make his seminal classic, the 1960 shocker Psycho. A glossy, easily digestible film that blends Hollywood nostalgia with an engaging narrative about the rough-and-tumble of old-school film-making, Hitchcock works smoothly as an entertaining triple tribute: to Hitchcock, who fought studios and censors to realise his desire to reinvent himself as a risky, provocative director after a string of hugely successful, safe Hollywood films; to Psycho, the peerless cinematic artwork that is to the horror genre what The Day the Earth Stood Still is to sci-fi; and, primarily, to Alma Reville, Hitchcock's wife, creative collaborator and - as hinted by Helen Mirren's sly, cutting, winning performance - his better half. First-time feature director Sacha Gervasi (Anvil) shoots and directs with a brightly-lit, pastel prettiness; his stylistic flourishes are a tad clunky (as when Hitch converses with Ed Gein, the inspiration for Psycho's Norman Bates), but it's not enough to mar this elongated valentine that successfully pulls focus on the smart woman who helped shape Hitchcock, both as an artist and as a man.
GANGSTER SQUAD *** (113 minutes) MA
Pretty much everything you'd want from a good gangster movie is dutifully delivered here: blazing machine guns; exploding cars; corrupt politicians; a nasty villain who wants to rule the city; dedicated cops happy to break the law in order to uphold it. Think Brian De Palma's The Untouchables, only without the artistic pretense. Frustrated cop Josh Brolin leads a group of bad boys - played by Michael Pena, Ryan Gosling,Anthony Mackie, Giovanni Ribisi and Robert Patrick - to bust the plans by Sean Penn's ambitious mobster to rule Los Angeles. Set just after the Second World War, director Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland; the very funny, crude 30 Minutes or Less) frames the film's violence and fetishistic sequences relishing the firepower of Thompson sub-machine guns as a morally driven defense of the American Dream. The chief cops are war veterans who fought for freedom, only to see their city threatened by a wannabe dictator, so they see their fight on the streets as motivated by the same principle. A big-nosed Penn is at his scenery-chewing best as fact-based Mafia bad guy Mickey Cohen, Gosling relishes his turn as the cop who loves getting his hands dirty while Ribisi (soon to be seen as David Koresh in Waco) manages to make the film's most cliched character bearable (he's a tech expert with a loving family, so guess what happens to him?). The film was shot on hi-def video by the great Australian cinematographer Dion Beebe (Praise; Chicago; Collateral), and while it certainly doesn't look anywhere near as terrible as Michael Mann's gangster epic Public Enemies (2009), there is still a cartoony, saturated texture to many of the scenes. For the most part it serves the film's noir style well, but the format has its limitations - especially when shooting Emma Stone, who plays the film's love interest. Dolled up as she is as a gangster moll, video simply flattens and muddies what should glow - a far cry from the way noir femmes were filmed. Note: After the horrendous multiplex shooting in Aurora, Colorado on Friday July 20 2012, the film's initial release date (7 September) was shifted to January so that a scene featuring a shooting in a cinema could be excised and replaced.
PARANORMAN ***1/2 (93 minutes) PG
In this superbly animated Goth story for tweens, middle-American bully bait Norman (voiced by Adelaide's Kodi Smit-McPhee) sees and speaks to dead people, an ability that puts him at the centre of the action when an old witch's curse results in zombies causing havoc in his small timber-locked town. Despite the dominance of digital, ParaNorman demonstrates - as did films such as Coraline, The Corpse Bride, Wallace & Gromit and The Nightmare Before Christmas - that stop-motion animation has a texture and warmth that can't (yet!) be replicated by computer. Regrettably though, while 2012 was a huge year for digitally animated features, it didn't fare so well for stop-motion works. While both Paranorman and Tim Burton's Frankenweenie share a visual beauty as well as reasonably low-budgets ($60m and $40m respectively), they did weakly, taking $100m and $66m apiece.