Saturday, May 29, 2010

Actress Profile: Kristen Stewart + photo spread & interview from Flaunt Magazine

Growing up as a shy, soft-spoken, very timid pre-teen (not anymore, apparently) I took refuge in films that spoke about me and what I was going through. One of those was the 2004 film Speak starring Kristen Stewart who plays a voluntary mute. I fell in love with her and enjoyed her other films as well: Panic Room and Zathura and more recently Adventureland starring alongside Ryan Reynolds.

Imagine my horror when I heard the news she'll be starring in Twilight, but after seeing the film I thought she did pretty good with the role she was given and I'm glad it boosted her career while catapulting her to stardom. Apart from Anna Kendrick she's the other actress I like seeing in the Twilight series, both make the movies not as bad as some people quickly judge it to be.

I cannot wait to see her develop as an actor and play more mature characters but in the meantime, I'm itching to see her in The Runaways which I'll hopefully get to see in the Sydney Film Festival next week (if the tickets don't sell out yet).

Now here is an excerpt from an interview in Flaunt Magazine where we learn why we shouldn't twitter when around Kristen:

“He was nice,” she concedes. “He didn’t ask for a picture. That’s good, because then they go and Twitter them and then the paparazzi know where I am and they drive to my location and it gets crazy. Twitter fucks me over every day of my life. Because people go, ‘I’m sitting next to Kristen Stewart right now’ and then they show up. I see people on their phones and I just want to take these cookies and throw them. It’s like ‘Get off your fucking phone and get a life!’ I get so mad. It’s like you’re trampling on someone’s life without any regard. And it’s rampant. Everyone can do it now. Buy a camera and you’re paparazzi; get a Twitter account and you’re an informant. It’s so annoying.”

Oh how I love her! Damn those annoying paparazzi, leave Kristen alooooonneee!

Ok, Enough talk. Here's some photos of Kristen looking super sexy wearing rock, borderline sci-fi glam in a photo spread from Flaunt

Looking dangerous with a very lethal accessory

Sunday, May 23, 2010

NOTES ON THE GO: Freelance writing. Yay or Nay?

I've been working at a local pharmacy for almost a year now. It's been good so far and it has given me funds to satisfy many of my material needs, which includes endless supply of art/fashion magazines, Moleskine notebooks, coffee, vitamin water, organic shampoos, goat's milk soap. You get the idea. I know this makes me seem super shallow but don't judge. I'm working on it.

Lately I've just been getting bored and thinking of focusing on my writing (and school) instead. So this led me to the idea of doing some freelance writing for money. I have a number of publications in mind (Spook, Spitpress, Voiceworks). Anyone out there know of other publications who are happy to accept submissions from a young writer with a special interest in the field of arts and entertainment? STOP. This is sounding like my resume. Or a job advert: Desperate povo writer in need of cash. Help?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

FASHION: Black is the new black

Black has a way to make anyone, regardless of skin tone, height or hair colour, look effortlessly stylish. But too much can make you seem dull. I like to add a splash of colour amongst all that black, even a teenie tiny bit. Also, play around with textures and fabrics. A velvet black is still different to a denim black.

 Jeans from Saba, Jacket from Calvin Klein, T-Shirt from Giordano and Shoes from Florsheim

My tripod was being a slut and kept tilting down. Everytime that happened, I had a mini heart attack because it looked like the camera was about to fall and crash to its death. When that didn't happen I just got annoyed and verbally abused that tilting thing on the tripod. Then I gave up and just left it tilting down while I lay on the floor.

When my butt started hurting from the hard tiled floor I abandoned the tripod and just used an ironing board and a bunch of CDs and made my own povo tripod.

Jacket and vest from Saba, Shirt from Bench

Cardigan from French Connection, T-Shirt from Can't Remember (that's not a store or a brand, I really can't remember)

Sometimes a t-shirt with a bold image with bright colours can lighten up the darkness.
Tell me what you think!

P.S. I just realised I had the same facial expression in all the photos, please don't harass me about that, it's just my face, I can't help it. It just does it automatically whenever there's a camera in front of me. It's my go-to camera expression :)

P.P.S. You know what's missing? Accessories! I couldn't find any that suited and I had work during the weekend so I couldn't go to the markets. Sad Face.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

FILM REVIEW: Animal Kingdom

Directed by David Michod
Starring Guy Pearce, Ben Mendelsohn, Jacki Weaver, Joel Edgerton, Luke Ford and James Frecheville

The film opens with a seemingly ordinary scene. Seventeen year old "J" (James Frecheville) is quietly watching a game show with his mother who appears to be asleep next to him on the couch. What we learn next is that she's just had a heroin overdose. There's a chilling quietness that blankets the first scene and that atmosphere lingers until the end. Right from the very beginning, the film tightly grips you by the neck and will slowly shatter your very core.

With no other guardian to look after him J is forced to live with his family, all criminals,  for whom his mother kept him away from for years. It's not long until things start to get out of hand and the helpless J finds himself torn in a battle between loyalty and morality.

The family is played by some of the most talented Australians actors working today. Ben Mendelsohn plays the uncle, "Pope", who is both comic and relentlessly monstrous. Jacki Weaver plays Janine, the creepy over-attached, mother figure whose expressions barely hide the beast lurking within. But it is Frecheville who steal the show. He plays his character with such restraint, his face alone can tell stories of a young man hardened in a world of crime, and not once did I feel that I was disconnected from the character.

But for me, the film's strength is its pacing and editing. It's a slow burn film and one that doesn't rely on micro-second shots and quick editing, but rather lets the story unfold in a natural pace, it's a patient movie and a very disciplined one.

I cannot express in words how well-made this film is all aspects. The way it is photographed is stunning, truly captures that dark crime drama mood but not too dark that it dehumanises the characters. The actors are brilliantly directed, there are no wasted moments in the film, each frame perfectly captures the tiny nuances and expressions of the characters and exposes the fragile relationships between them. Surprisingly this is David Michod's first feature film. I cannot wait what he does in the future, I have high expectations for him. He co-wrote Hesher which I'm excited to see next month for the Sydney Film Fest.

I really hope that people get behind this fantastic movie both in Australia and internationally, it's a film that deserves to be seen in the big screen and in a packed theatre because judging from the gasps, the laughs and the quiet moments of shock I heard in the screening I attended, this is one to share with other people.

For the past two or so years, Australia has been churning out some of the most ambitious and thought provoking films, ones that wield so much power over you that you just can't help but sing praises. If these types of film continue to roll out from the great Down Under then its film industry will certainly be a force to  be reckoned with.

Friday, May 14, 2010

What I'm seeing at the Sydney Film Festival 2010

So SFF is next month and I've already booked my tickets (I have a fear of the words SOLD OUT) and I've got my "schedule" planned already. I bought a bundle of ten tickets and managed to get tickets for all of the films I wanted to see, except for the Banksy doc. Tickets were unavailable for that film because it was <>.

The festival will kick off for me with a film I didn't really intend to see but because of aforementioned ticketing disaster, I had to go with an alternate. It's a documentary entitled Beautiful Darling and is focused on one of Andy Warhol's "superstars", Candy Darling. My final year Visual Arts body of work is an appropriation of Warhol's works so this is my obligatory teach-me-something-so-I-can-tell-people-it's-research festival pick.

Next, I'm going to see Julie Bertucelli's drama The Tree which I know close to nothing about other than the fact that it's premiering at the closing night of Cannes. Premiering at the closing, wow that's contradictory. The other thing I know is that Charlotte Gainsbourg of Antichrist "fame" stars in the film. I use the word fame loosely. I'm excited to see her in a proper film as she is such a terrific actress.

On the same night (I'm going to have to dash from one cinema to the next) I'm finally going to see one of my most anticipated film of this year. I've been obssessing about this movie for so long, I've even dedicated my twitter background to it (as well as my desktop wallpaper). It is of course the much loved Australian horror film, The Loved Ones.

I'm going to see two more documentaries, both I know very little about but their subject matter interests me. First is the doco called Bill Cunningham New York. It is about..well...Bill Cunnigham in New York. Cunningham, a New York Times journalist, is considered to be one of the most influential and hardworking fashion photographers in the industry and we get an inside peek into his world. The other doco is Last Train Home and judging from the trailer, it should turn out to be one of the most beautifully captured docos of the festival, mimicking that deliciously cinematic style akin to other docos like Up The Yangtze and The Cove.

From now on, it's all dramas, starting with Sundance-opener, Howl. Followed by a Filipino film directed by Brilliante Mendoza, who snagged the Best Director prize from Cannes last year with his new film, Lola.

Then it's Police, Adjective. Again, I know nothing about this film but it got favourable reviews so I booked it. Then finally, I finish with two films from Sundance - Winter's Bone and Hesher. The former I'm excited about because it won the prize in Sundance and the latter I'm excited about because Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars in it.

So there you go, hopefully I'll be able to catch some other films during the festival if I have time (or money) and just dive in with a film I've never even heard of, to make it exciting and hopefully find my own little festival gem.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

FASHION NOTES ON THE GO: Vogue Australia June Cover

A couple of days ago I walked past a kiosk in George St and they had Samantha Harris on the cover! I fell in love with this model after seeing her back in the summer issue of March. She looked so strikingly beautiful wearing Miu Miu and it's about time an Indigenous model made it in not just Vogue, but in its covers.

Those lips, and those intense eyes just stopped me in my tracks and I quickly purchased an issue. I had to hide the magazine between my Sydney Film Fest program (I'll talk about this in another post) while I was walking to the bus stop because I was getting all these weird looks from people. Apparently its not right for a boy to carry around an issue of Vogue.

But that doesn't matter. I wish I can take a pic of the cover on my phone but I accidentally spilled beer on it (my phone, not the Vogue...relax) during karaoke and now it has this stupid line in the middle of the screen and the camera is being very stubborn.

Anyway, if you can manage to grab a copy of Australian Vogue, please do so. I really want to support Harris' career, plus it has a great article on fashion budgeting.

Monday, May 10, 2010

NOTES ON THE GO, a new segment

To take advantage of mobile email on my phone I've created a new blog segment that lets me put up blog posts on the go, so for example I can instantly put up thoughts on a movie the second I walk out of the theatre, or maybe a quick assessment of what a stranger is wearing on the street. I won't be able to attach pictures with posts, I have a feeling you can, I just haven't figured it out yet. Let me play around with it.

So, this will unclog most of the thoughts in my head and out in the internet. Plus, it's so fun to type on my phone as the buttons make this really cute noise and it will give me something to do if I'm ever alone in public (this happens quite frequently). I usually whip my phone out to not look like a loner while also stating to the world: 'look! I actually have friends to text!'. Which is misleading since I'm not actually texting but instead either looking through photos repeatedly, deleting messages or blogging. The latter is less lame, I think.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

BOOKS: Lolita, The Plague and Holding The Man

So I spent a couple of months brushing up on my literature thanks to the super cheap and retro cool Popular Penguins range. I've bought I think about ten of them already and have started them all but only managed to finish some. Nabokov's Lolita was too uncomfortable and even though the writing was exquisite it was just too...damn...uncomfortable *throws book across the room, then quickly realising that it's a fragile paperback that deserves more TLC than its hardcover counterpart, runs across the room to pick it up from the floor*

Speaking of discomfort in literature, I highly recommend NOT reading Albert Camus' The Plague if you have even a slight fear of rats. I haven't finished this one too because despite multiple viewings of Ratatouille and constantly reminding myself that the rats in the book look like Remy the cute rat:

 And not like Ron Weasley's Scabbers the filthy rat,

 I was still unable to muster the courage to turn the next page.

One book I'm nearly finished with (emphasis on the word nearly) is Timothy Conigrave's Holding The Man. It doesn't have beautiful, lyrical writing like Lolita but it does have an incredibly moving (true!) story. It's the love story of Timothy and John Caleo and set in Australia. I was blown away by the honesty of the story and how emotionally charged thier love for each other is. I had to keep stopping at every chapter because each one elicited a sudden burst of tears and the fact that this actually happened made it more heart wrenching. Highly recommend this book.

The novel has also been adapted for the theatre and played in a sold-out season in Sydney two years ago (AAARRGGHH!) but fingers crossed they'll do another season. I would kill to attend a Sydney Theatre Company production of this.

Photos: MTC, Penguin, Remy

Sunday, May 2, 2010

FASHION: Winter is approaching (for those who live in the Southern hemisphere)

Took these pics a while ago and only now do I get the time to finally post them up. My fashion posts are directly inspired by other fashion bloggers like the Sartorialist, Tavi Gevinson, Bryanboy and Jak and Jil, although I will never be able to reach their greatness...

Scarf from Calvin Klein. T-shirt from T-Bar. Cardigan from Country Road. Skinnies from Saba.

Peruvian hat from Dad's Wardrobe and scarf from Sportscraft

Hoodie from Saba.


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