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Byron Shire
February 1, 2023


Latest News

$3 million for regional news outlets in NSW

The NSW government has announced a new $3 million fund to assist regional communities to have access to trusted news sources covering the stories that matter.

Other News

Byron Bay SLSC takes fourth place at NSW country championships

South coast club Warillanhas overturned five years of Cudgen Headland dominace to win this year’s NSW Country Surf Lifesaving...


What have they done to our Vinnies here in Mullum? They’ve killed it! It has reopened and it is...

Cheeky Cabaret returns!

Following the Cheeky season is some incredible live music, including Ella Hooper: Small Town Temple tour, Libby O’Donovan – cabaret singer extraordinaire, Stella Donnelly: Flood Australian tour, Liz Stringer and William Crighton co-headlining in a powerhouse performance, and the house is thrilled to announce the fabulous Tim Rogers & The Twin Set coming in April.

Duck Creek Mountain Bike Park reopens

Just off the road between Alstonville and Ballina, the spectacular Duck Creek Mountain Bike Park has re-opened, bigger and better, after an injection of funding and lots of hard work from dedicated volunteers.

Ballina Shire Council Australia Day Ceremony

Ballina Shire Council is hosting an Australia Day ceremony at Lennox Head Cultural Centre, Park Lane, Lennox Head from 9am–11am.

Nudging into a Smarter Summer

Nudge Nudge Wink Wink! 2023’s summer continues with a lineup that’s guaranteed to have you deliciously dancing from the moment you arrive. 

There is an ‘all that glitters is not gold’ moral here: Unheralded South African director Neill Blomkamp caught everyone’s eye with his confronting futuristic drama District 9 (2009).

As so often is the case, its success resulted in his being lured to Hollywood where, with a quadrupled budget, he came up with the less challenging Elysium, a blockbuster in which CGI typically took precedence over the sort of dark, worrying narrative that drove D9.

Back in Johannesburg again, with much less money at his disposal, he has returned to form.

The inhabitants of the city (in reality, Joh’burg is one of the world’s most violent) are kept in check by squads of police robots, including the astonishingly believable Chappie (voiced by Sharlto Copley).

When Chappie is captured by ‘gangsta’ drug dealers, Blomkamp, without foregoing the thrills and spills expected from the genre, is able to take his story to a philosophical level rarely attempted in mega-bucks sci-fi flicks.

Intelligence – artificial or otherwise – love and learning, identity, creation itself all come under the spotlight as Chappie becomes aware of his own being, and his shelf-life.

So convincing is the walking-talking hunk of metal that the scene in which he is beaten up by street thugs elicits genuine despair (I was more distressed by it than I would have been if Chappie were a normal flesh-and-blood screen hero).

From there, the battered Chappie staggers to a junkyard where his encounter with a stray dog is in every way as poignant as when Frankenstein’s monster found comfort in the cabin of the blind peasant.

This is a fabulous movie that manages the perfect balance between brawn and brain and in which Blomkamp is handsomely rewarded by exceptional performances from his big-name stars – Dev Patel, Sigourney Weaver and Hugh Jackman (fantastic as the bullying Aussie tech-head) – and local actors alike.

Yo-Landi Visser, ‘Mummy’ to Chappie, is adorable and it is only fitting that she is the focus of an end shot that pays rightful homage to Avatar.

~ John Campbell

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Vale Professor Will Steffen – leading climate scientist

Leading climate scientist Professor Will Steffen has died of pancreatic cancer in Canberra at 75.

Oil spill on M1 near Byron, traffic backed up to Brunswick Heads exit

An accident on the M1 has brought southbound traffic to a standstill from the Brunswick Heads exit at Gulgan Road and Tweed Street.

Four arrested over alleged break-ins, trespass – Casino

Four boys have been arrested by police investigating alleged aggravated break and enter and trespass offences in Casino on Monday, 30 January.

V-Day returns to Byron Bay, February 14

A mass global action, One Billion Rising, which aims to end violence against women and children, is planned for V-Day on February 14, Main Beach, Byron Bay from 7am.