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Byron Shire
April 21, 2021

In Bloom

Latest News

Local youth among those hardest hit by housing affordability crisis

A 20 per cent spike in rents is driving an increase in youth homelessness across the North Coast, the organisers of a national campaign to end homelessness say.

Other News

Byron Bay wants Byron Baes to back off

Faster than speeding reality TV producer, members of the Byron community have swiftly mounted a multi-pronged attack against the proposed ‘influencer’ based Netflix show Byron Baes.

Rise and shine!

Early morning starts are not a usual routine for chefs at the Ballina RSL Club. March was an exception when Chef Halie Welsh rallied some staff and friends together to take part in Ian Thorpe’s Laps For Life charity. A team of ten hit the Ballina Pool at 7am every day during March to raise funds For ReachOut’s Laps For Life challenge. 

Report and recommendations – First Nations people in custody

High, but not high enough, on the country's human rights agenda is the issue of Aboriginal deaths in custody.

Rocky Creek Field Day coming in July

As part of the Rural Landholder Initiative, rural landholders in the Rocky Creek area are invited to an Off-stream Watering and Riparian Habitat Field Day.

Poor Council drains

Kate Anderson, Mullumbimby In response to and support of Kerry Gray’s and Robin Gracie’s letters Echo 31 March). The McGoughans Lane...

You Donne good

Liz Levy, Suffolk Park I’d like to thank whoever decided to reprint John Donne’s beautiful poem ‘No Man is an Island’...

An old anecdote has it that David Lean was being pressured to abbreviate one of the extended shots in Lawrence of Arabia. His editor argued that it would push the audience’s patience to breaking point. Lean’s response was to lengthen the take – to make the punters earn their reward. It came to mind in this quiet and uncomplicated but wonderful Georgian film. Schoolgirl Eka (Lika Babluani), a doe-eyed beauty, takes what appears to be a swig of a fortifying drink and proceeds to perform a traditional dance at a rowdy wedding reception. Instead of cutting the scene to ‘sound bite’ brevity, director Nana Ekvtimishvili has it last for a couple of minutes, and the effect is mesmerising. Neither is it the only time that she ushers the viewer into the sort of contemplative mindscape rarely visited by cinema these days. This movie starkly exemplifies how story is all important and that the sophistication of art and artifice can unintentionally distract from it.

With a mostly hand-held camera, next to no mood-making music and free of diversionary special effects, we become involved in the mundane events surrounding Eka and her friends and family on the dismal outskirts of Tbilisi. Squabbles erupt at bread queues, men get drunk and have screaming rows with their wives, unemployed youths with nothing else to do hassle young women. Like a piece of chattel, Natia, a relative of Eka, is forced into a marriage of convenience. Simmering tensions come to the boil when the handsome fellow whom she loves reappears on the cheerless streets. The atmosphere is fraught throughout, for there is a pistol that is bound to come into play at some point. Underpinned by Eka’s urgent need to see her imprisoned father (the theme of a child seeking a parent resonates with the outstanding Russian film of recent times, The Italian), Eka shows wisdom beyond her years in dealing with the drama that engulfs her and Natia. Straightforward and beguiling, it is a tale beautifully told.

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Fresh faces for Council elections

A very distinct, black flat-cap has just been thrown into the ring for the upcoming Byron Council elections, pegged for September 4.

Follow the buck$

JK Mckenna, Burringbar Give Fast Buck$ his own column in the paper. Let him speak. Let him be heard. Let’s also see some accountability from councils...

A bouquet for Lilac House

L Jenkins, Byron Bay Nicole Habrecht should receive free paint and brushes and a pat on the back from Council for maintaining her house in a...

Bruns boarding house showdown Thursday

The stage is set for a crucial debate over the Brunswick Heads ‘Corso’ development in Byron Council this week, with staff recommending that the developer’s revised plans be approved.