BOOK REVIEW: NATASHA LESTER – HER MOTHER’S SECRET

  Her Mother’s Secret is a story about a strong female heroine, written by a woman for female readers. Natasha Lester, the author of the best-selling A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald, brings us another historical fiction novel, once again telling the story of female protagonist making good in the man’s world, set in New York City in…

ARTS REVIEW: ADMAN: WARHOL BEFORE POP

  For most people the iconic artist, Andy Warhol is synonymous with the colourful pop art of Campbell’s soup cans, portraits of Marilyn Monroe and the record sleeves from The Velvet Underground and The Rolling Stones. What some people may not realise is that Andy Warhol was an accomplished commercial illustrator and draftsman who worked…

FILM REVIEW: WINTER AT WESTBETH

  Winter at Westbeth is a film that’s all about “the art.” And celebrating it at every age. This documentary looks at three young at heart, elderly, American artists who live in a vibrant, housing complex called Westbeth Artists Housing in New York. It is ultimately a film that is like a love letter to…

DVD REVIEW: FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS

  Meryl Streep is no stranger to singing. The loveable actress has sung pop on the silver screen in Mamma Mia! and was recently a rock chick in Ricki and the Flash. In Florence Foster Jenkins Meryl puts in a fabulous performance by singing opera but doing so badly. It’s one of those things where the singing…

BOOK REVIEW: KATE KERRIGAN – IT WAS ONLY EVER YOU

  She loves you yeah, yeah, yeah! It Was Only Ever You is a romantic story about three strong, young women and their relationships with one charming man living in New York City. It’s an engrossing, light and sweet tale that will leave you wondering how it will end and who will wind up with…

FILM REVIEW: CAFE SOCIETY

  Woody Allen’s latest film should be renamed “High Society.” This beautifully-shot comedy is a nostalgic but throwaway look at the glitz and glamour of some halcyon days in Hollywood and the smoky nightlife of New York. It’s ultimately like a pleasant and lightweight dream that celebrates money even though the thirties was synonymous for…

DVD REVIEW: GIRLS SEASON 3

  Girls isn’t a glamorous show and in many ways that’s what makes it feel so brutally honest and real. In the third season the characters are the most fully developed and realised versions of themselves to date. It’s also one that is full of the kinds of stories and things that will challenge, enthral,…

DVD REVIEW: BRILLIANT CREATURES

  Brilliant Creatures is a two-part television series that celebrates four iconic Australians. Feminist and libertarian,Germaine Greer; writer/broadcaster/memoirist and poet, Clive James; the late firebrand, art critic, Robert Hughes; and savage satirist Barry Humphries all share things in common. The most important thing is that they left Australian in the fifties and sixties in order…

DVD REVIEW: THE ANGRIEST MAN IN BROOKLYN

  The Angriest Man In Brooklyn could be dubbed “The Diary Of A Mad Man”. The film is a straight-to-DVD release directed by Phil Alden Robinson and stars comedian, Robin Williams as one obnoxious lawyer. After being told he has 90 minutes left to live the irate curmudgeon engages in a frenzied, amazing race around New York to make amends…

FILM REVIEW: CHINESE PUZZLE (Casse-tête chinois)

  The film, Chinese Puzzle (Casse-tête chinois) could be re-named “Xavier’s Travels” or “It’s Complicated”. The French film and final instalment in director and writer, Cédric Klapisch’s trilogy puts middle-aged life and all of its vagaries and difficulties under the microscope. In some ways the John Lennon quote, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other…

BOOK REVIEW: DIANE MARINA – IMPERIAL HOTEL

  American author, Diane Marina’s short story, Imperial Hotel is like the lesbian’s answer to Nicholas Sparks’ The Notebook. It is one gorgeous and classic love story set in New York City in 1948. Imperial Hotel is told from the perspective of one of the lead characters, Joan Blackstone. She is an 18-year old, unmarried society…