Tag Archives: hilarity

The Great Debate

It was about the most outgoing weekend I’ve had since… oh, Swancon  ;]

I really wanted to go to some stuff at the Comedy Festival this year, and the Great Debate seemed like a pretty good bet. (I really wanted to go to the Gala, but it turns out the tix for that are available about six months beforehand, and sell out in, oh, a day or so.) When we bought tickets, there was no info about either the topic or the participants. A couple of days before, I found out that Hamish Blake and Cal Wilson were in it – which I thought boded well, because I really like Hamish… Cal I’m indifferent towards.

It’s a very awesome venue, the Melbourne Town Hall: lots of seating but still not enormous; we were in the front row of the circle, and right in the middle which was cool: I worried for a bit that there would be someone in front of us, at the sound desk, but it turned out OK. The compere was Corinne Grant, whom I generally enjoy, and she was very funny. The other funny thing, which was also a bit disturbing, was that we could see the tele-prompter from where we sat: I was very worried that the whole lot would be like that, but only Corinne’s between-participant bits were prompted (and were, frankly, dull).

I was hugely excited when I saw that Paul McDermott was on the bill! I’ve loved Paul since way back on Good News Week and the greatest ever breakfast radio team (Paul and Mikey Robbins. If you don’t remember, you’re too young or weren’t listening to a good station). Sadly, he was probably my least favourite for the whole night. Just… not that funny. *sigh* Hamish, though, was brilliant, as was Stephen K Amos; Julia Morris has impeccable timing; and Patton Oswalt was pretty good too. Cal, as expected, left me a bit flat.

Overall, it was a good night! Oh yes – the topic was “That reality is better on TV.” Which was a very appropriate topic – the cameras and all… it was delightfully meta-something.

DOA; or, How to Watch Unexpected Movies

Oh. My. Goodness.

When out shopping today, I decided to act on impulse and visit JB to finally buy The Mummy, because I only have this taped off TV. I expected that I would be able to get it as a double with The Mummy Returns, which I was fine with. Turned out that I could only get it as a trilogy, with The Scorpion King. OK, I figured – haven’t seen the latter, I’ll deal with it; it was $4 more than The Mummy by itself. Plus, it was 20% off all DVDs, which was even better. For that reason, we had a look around the store for anything else that caught our eye, which is how we ended up with the Blade trilogy as well. Then, on the way out, my darling saw the stall where they have the multiple-movies-in-one-case. There was one with The Mummy, The Mummy Returns, Scorpion King, Van Helsing (I can’t believe we didn’t already own this!) and The Hulk (meh): back went the trilogy I’d picked up, because this 5-set cost less than it did! And while we were there, we got a second: Doom (not seen… not sure), Pitch Black (love it; love Claudia Black!), Chonicles of Riddick (same; plus Judi Dench in such a cool, out-there role), Serenity (do already have it, but you know – it’s Serenity!)… and DOA.

I’d never heard of DOA: Dead or Alive, and my question is this: did it ever appear in Australian cinemas? Because it’s the sort of thing I certainly would have thought about going to see, although perhaps not busting a gut to get to; but I’d never heard of it before I saw it on this DVD cover. And heck, it has Holly Valance in it! Clearly, it was going to be (as my love says) qualitah.

What it turned out to be was a fairly cool 75 minutes of fun fighting choreography. There is a plot in there – somewhere – but it was fairly transparent, not to mention flimsy, and in many ways was essentially facilitating bikini-clad women fighting either blokes who knew not what hit them, or each other. It really was very cool choreography, though, and there was barely a 5-minute block without a fight scene. And Holly Valance’s opening scene had me in absolute hysterics; never has a woman putting on a bra been quite so hilarious.  I’m not sure I’ll watch it again – except maybe with friends who will appreciate the gloriously insane and kitsch nature of the film – but it’s definitely one to loan out and wait for the reaction from.

Kenny

Oh my.

I’ve only just seen this little Aussie battler – I was dubious when I first saw the trailers, then heard rave reviews from various people, but never got around to it.

It is brilliant.

I can’t begin to describe it properly. If you haven’t seen it, and you’re not embarrassed by poo-talk, you must see it. It captures Australia beautifully. The family relationships in particular are so true that they’re heartbreaking – and they actually are all family! That’s amazing – and that they didn’t kill each other in making it. Kenny himself… well. Quintessentially what we’d like to think Aussie working class blokes are like, but not so stereotyped as to be unbelievable. I think the sheer brilliance of this is that I know Kennys. Quirks, surprises, and sheer bull-headed determination and all.

His insights into Aussie culture – and seeing festivals and the like from behind, as it were – are pointed and exact, and at times quite disturbing because of their truth. Driving past the Calder Raceway every day as I do, the hoons shown there were a bit scary – again, because it’s just so true. And, reflecting the quote from the start, it really does show just how little attention is paid to people who are – for all we like to think we live in a glorious, flat, classless society – treated no better than servants ever were in the hey-day of rigid class division. Those were the bits that made me squirm; not the frank and easy talk of poo (“regular as clockwork, that’s me…”). But Kenny just goes on, and does his job, and enjoys his job, while the people who think they are his betters act like right knobs.

This is The Castle for the 00s. It had better go down as one of the more insightful looks at Aussie culture – as well as being very funny. And the cinematography too – it really does look like a doco; it’s magnificently done.

Bride and Prejudice

Of all ridiculous things… this movie!

J is out for the weekend, so I got some girls over to eat and catch up, which was great, and we ended up watching Bride and Prejudice. It was hilarious… I generally find musicals very uncomfortable, for whatever reason, and I did a bit this one too, but it’s just so over the top and ridiculous and beautiful to look at that you can’t help but laugh and enjoy it.