A few plays and movies

As well as a concert and an opera, in February, March and the start of April I saw a couple of plays and movies. The latter at the cinema, not just on tele. (I know. I lead an exciting life.)

I subscribe to the Sydney Theatre Company and see about six plays a year. I’ve seen two thus far. 

Play 1: The Testament of Mary based on the novel by Colm Toibin. I loved the book; one of my keepers which I reviewed earlier. The play was equally moving. It was impressive that the actor sustained the energy for basically what was a monologue.  Mary’s voice and her equivocating on the supernatural nature of Jesus is just as strong in the play. Before the play we had lunch at the Dance Cafe. Great venue – in the middle of one of the long wharves. And the food’s quite good too. 


Play 2: Another deeply moving play, The Bleeding Tree. With only three actors, it felt like there were more characters on stage, as the actors took on other voices. The mother and her two daughters kill the father as they suffered DV for years. The neighbours turned a blind eye to his death/murder, as many had to the DV. I normally do a matinee but for this play we went to a Saturday night performance. The city lights were awesome. We ate at a busy Italian before the play. I had the yummiest pizza with arancini balls to start. Of course I had to have a glass of prosecco. Or two. Afterwards we walked along the harbour. The city was pumping that night and everywhere was full.


Movie 1: Les Innocents. A French movie that was part of the French movie festival. I went with the young and lovely Sarah. (Such fresh and glowing skin!!!) Of course we ate and talked and had a cocktail and talked. Oo la la. (That was what the cocktail was called, apparently. Or maybe that was just for the festival!) I love unique tales that show me something I knew nothing about.  Polish nuns raped by Russian soldiers and tended by French medics at the immediate end of WWII was definitely new for me. 

Movie 2: I got free preview tickets to see Their Finest. (Love how I have scored free and discounted tics this year!!!) Bill Nighy was brilliant. Who knew he could sing? Highlight for my friend and me was hearing him sing Will Ye Go Lassie (Wild Mountain Thyme). The movie was a sweet and somewhat melodramatic love story set in WWII. My only caveats was the incidental music, which I found annoying, and something else which I have forgotten and as I only saw it a week ago, it couldn’t have been a big caveat. The country scenery was beautiful. Before this film, (you can guess the trend here) I also ate – at a Lebanese restaurant with the softest falafals I’ve ever had – and talked a lot. No drinking, though. I was driving.


On the small screen, I have watched quite a few films and series:

  • Sisters with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Funny and silly. Good to while away 90 minutes. 
  • Captain Fantastic. Father raises his children in the woods and then has to leave as the mother dies. I loved the challenge to what is normal. Worth watching. 
  • No Offence. Series 2. I love, love, love this series. Fast talking with northern English accents, it can be hard to follow. Crime with black humour, this was written by the fellow who wrote the first series of Shameless. Same take on the world. 
  • Vera. Another English crime series. Vera looks like a bag lady. I didn’t enjoy it so much after her first offsider left. 
  • Gogglebox. I love watching people watch TV. I like all the watchers. Well picked Gogglebox producers. I like how I get an overview of the shit on tele without watching all the shit. It’s like getting a dose of pop culture without suffering.  I mean who really wants to watch the stupid cooking shoes (only The Great British Bake Off is worth watching.) And any of the real housewives series is absolute shite. The reaction from the Gogglebox people makes it all funny. 
  • Distant Voices, Still Lives. Apparently this is considered a masterpiece. From England it tells of a working class family from Liverpool ruled by an abusive father. It wasn’t just the bleakness that lost me. It was so disjointed. Shhh, but I used the fast forward button. 
  • The Guard. An Irish black comedy with Brendan Gleeson. I do like black comedies and this one was brilliant. Gleeson was in the black comedy, In Bruges, that I liked too. 

I’m not going to tell you which ones of these films you should see, cause it really depends on what you like. But if you want me to pick one for you, tell me what sort of films or series you like, and I’ll tell you which one is for you. 

Anyway, you can see I’ve been busy in things beyond work. And I haven’t even written about our “out and about” adventures!!!

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11 thoughts on “A few plays and movies

  1. You have been busy!! 2 live theatre events in such a short time-span is good going. Ahhh, you are making me homesick again for the life and liveliness of Sydney…can almost smell the night air on the harbour and hear the buzz.

    I have told Sarah that next up, all 3 of us are going to do a meet-up in Sydney. I will fly/drive up at some stage.

    A side-note: I cannot over-emphasize how much I approve of your love of Gogglebox. I get taunted badly at work for watching but all those haughty high-brow viewers do not know what they are missing. Some goss…Mr D ran into one of the Gogglebox families at our local Coles a few weeks ago. Was a highlight!

    • I had a friend who was related to one of the families. The educated family on earlier series. Dad was a doctor. They had to drop out as the father suffered from depression. Quite sad. I liked the family. A bit like mine. Nerdy.

      As to high brow, I love how he high brow couple’s comments juxtapose with the other couple. The one where the husband is a truckie.

      Yes to a Sydney meet up. Though I’d like to visit Melbourne one of these days.

  2. Gosh my skin is breaking out this week – so youth isn’t all perks!

    I saw *Their finest* on Saturday with the oldies. Or was that Friday? It was good – I wouldn’t have gone without their nudge. I also saw (and napped in) the *Lego movie* – there’s some GREAT lines, and I want to transcript to reuse them, but taking twins, one who lay all over me, was good fun, though I was clearly knackered from a LATE Saturday night date.

    I recommend to you: *Seven types of ambiguity* (on ABC iView); others keep raving about *The NIght Manager *(SBS on demand) but I don’t love love it, it just passes the time. And I watched all of Season 15 of Project Runway. Yep, lazy weekend!

    • I couldn’t get into The Night Manager. Had several people encourage me. People who also know my taste but it just didn’t hook me.

      You went to the movies and fell asleep? I’ve dozed off in plays a couple of times. Kills me because I can’t wait for the DVD and watch a replay. And I feel so sorry for the actors who may notice and think it is a reflection on their acting rather than I display of how God damn tired I am. A moment to sit in peace and darkness and I’m off!

  3. I always enjoy your reviews- they give me just the right amount of detail and are so well written. And I’m not just saying that for the free tickets.
    I enjoyed Their Finest (so glad you nudged me) and as you said – Bill Nighy’s singing was a bonus.
    I’m still searching around for more Scandi TV series – having just finished bingeing my way through the Danish series, Dicte. Also recommend The Legacy – both on SBS On Demand.

  4. Wow – you get about a bit – have you had time to sleep recently! I have only done local amateur dramatics recently – but they are good fun to support oh and my sisters pantomime – nothing quite as high brow as the Sidney Theatre! I too love Gogglebox for the same reasons you get to watch a bit of everything with no adverts – do you have an Aussie version?

    • Well there have been things that haven’t been done – cleaning, gardening, exercising beyond walking.

      I was put onto the UK Gogglebox by a friend and watched it via YouTube. It never made it to TV here. I was a bit tentative when it was announced they’d be making an Australian version – I didn’t think we’d match the posh English couple. But it is as good. And makes more sense as I know the people they are referring to.

  5. I have not read any Colm Toibin. Must do that! What, you didn’t hear Bill Nighy sing “Love Is All Around” in Love Actually!! I have been watching a few movies, reviews to come, but I will say one of them was La famille Belier at your recommendation 🙂

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