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Byron Shire
February 26, 2021

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Bringing down the heat in our ‘hood

How well we survive the future depends on our vision for our towns and suburbs – and on how we bring that vision about.

Other News

Update: Main Arm raids… The police are in Mullum!

After several reports today from readers that there is a 'massive drug operation' and a 'gun and drug unit from Parramatta!', an intrepid Echonetdaily drudge wandered over to Barry Lomath Oval next to the skate park and netball courts in Mullum.

Police use road spikes to catch speeder

Police say that on Friday at around 10.45pm, they received information that a stolen Hyundai Santa Fe was travelling south of the Pacific Motorway towards the QLD/NSW border.

Entertainment in the Byron Shire and beyond for the week beginning 24 February, 2021

Entertainment in the Byron Shire and beyond for the week beginning 24 February, 2021

Craig Kelly quits Liberal Party

Federal Member for Hughes Craig Kelly has resigned from the Liberal Party, technically throwing Scott Morrison's government into minority as it grapples with scandals from within and without.

Wonderful Council

Raphael Lee Cass, Byron Bay I went for a swim at Belongil Beach the other day and was shocked to...

Rail trail

Peter Finch, East Lismore At last someone else has put their hand up to question the fluffery and misinformation surrounding...

With some notable exceptions (William Faulkner and Graham Greene spring to mind), novelists often struggle to adapt their skills to filmmaking – the book and the screenplay are two different creatures altogether.

Peter Dexter is an American crime writer whose forte is murder, usually among poor white trash, and I was submerged from go to whoa in this gritty tale set in the Florida bayou country. It is about the freeing of Hilary (John Cusack), an inmate wrongly convicted and awaiting execution on death row – but there is a certain messiness in its construction that tends occasionally to make it wobble at its foundations. Most problematic is the narration throughout of Anita (Macy Gray), a black maid in the household of newspaper family, the Jansens. Her status is lowly, but her relationship with the youngest, Jack (Zac Efron), is close and affectionate.

The movie opens with her telling an unseen interviewer the background to the killing of a corrupt sheriff. Though having no involvement in events, Anita’s explanatory voice-over then comes and goes as we follow the efforts to clear Hilary by journo Ward Jansen (Matthew McConaughey), brother Jack, fellow investigator Yardley (David Oyelowo) and Charlotte (Nicole Kidman), who writes letters to blokes in jail.

The trouble is, Anita provides us with information that she cannot possibly have been privy to and, in so doing, her testimony dilutes the PoV of Jack, whose story it is. There is also a gratuitous homophobic rape scene that might easily have found its way to the cutting room floor without being missed, but otherwise this is a sleazy, sweaty drama of captivating nastiness.

Kidman is especially good as the slutty boiler in a tiny pink dress who has been corresponding with Hilary since he was incarcerated. As for Cusack, he surpasses even John Jarratt in Wolf Creek for repulsiveness – the simulated sex indulged in by Hilary and Charlotte when they first meet, in front of the others, is as down and dirty as you could imagine. Terrifically noir.

John Campbell


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Resilience through biodiversity and awareness

The Byron Shire Resilience and Regeneration Roadshow will be in Brunswick Heads this Saturday, as part of a series of events across the region tackling the question: ‘How do we create more resilient communities in 2021?’

Housing affordability on agenda at Ballina

With the housing crisis worsening in Ballina and across the Northern Rivers, councillors agreed that something had to be done about the problem at their meeting yesterday.

Final stage of Lismore Base Hospital get underway

The redevelopment works commenced in late 2016 and the final stage is now getting underway to complete the Lismore Base Hospital referbishment.

Constitutional referendum/poll for LG elections for Byron Shire?

Is the wards fight back again? Byron Shire Council staff have advised, in the upcoming agenda, that ‘Council may conduct a Constitutional referendum or poll in conjunction with the Local Government Election, to be held in September 2021’.