View Post

The Eulogy

Australian, Documentary, Review, Theatrical, This Week Leave a Comment

Geoffrey Tozer was a child prodigy – he was playing Mozart at three and creating his own music at seven – who went on to become a phenomenally gifted and internationally acclaimed classical pianist. (Some say a genius.) He also died alone and destitute in 2009, aged only 54. This doco is an attempt to discover exactly what went wrong.

The title comes from Paul Keating’s searing speech at Tozer’s memorial service. Keating was a great admirer of Tozer’s talent, and a major (governmental) benefactor; he agreed to re-enact his speech – in which he slammed those who he believed treated Tozer shamefully – for the doco.

The tragic story is explored in a way that’s both nuanced and impassioned. It’s also both simple and complex, because key elements include a ‘stage’ mother who drove the young boy to excel… the Tall Poppy Syndrome… an ill-fated relationship… Tozer’s own utter lack of worldliness… alcohol abuse and unreliability…   the alleged abandonment of the man by the musical establishment (arguably the biggest factor of all)… and much more besides.

Most of the interviewees are highly eloquent. That includes the late conductor and educator Richard Gill, who completed his own involvement in the project during his final months. One of the highlights is, incidentally, the inspired and delightfully aesthetically pleasing use of animated graphics.

Keating claimed at one point in his eulogy that the way Tozer was overlooked by Melbourne and Sydney orchestras was “a case example of bitchiness and preciousness within the Australian arts”. Speaking of case examples, this film is one of how to make a fascinating, balanced and very moving documentary.

View Post

Trailer: Standing Up for Sunny

Steve Vidler's sweet romcom, starring Breaking Bad's RJ Mitte, Philippa Northeast and scene stealer Italia Hunt, along with supporting turns from Radha Mitchell and Sam Reid, and cameos from the likes of Barry Humphreys and Arj Barker, has a trailer a limited cinema run from December 5
View Post

Sam Zubrycki – Searching for Salsa

The Australian filmmaker has made an impressive debut with his feature length documentary Miguelito, which unravels the mystery of what happened to an 11-year-old boy who was discovered shining shoes and sang so poignantly on a classic album, translated as ‘I Sing to Puerto Rico’.
View Post

New Australian film The Furnace Announced

Writer/Director Roderick MacKay will make his feature debut, with David Wenham and Ahmed Malek (both pictured) to star, with Baykali Ganambarr, Trevor Jamieson, Erik Thomson, Mahesh Jadu and Osamah Sami in supporting roles.