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Byron Shire
March 9, 2021

Cinema Review: The Beguiled

Latest News

Seapeace: the late Tony Maxwell’s wetland legacy

Many curious minds have pondered the purpose of the rice paddy-like waterbodies that scallop the contour lines out into the Ewingsdale coastal plain that can be viewed from St Helena Road.

Other News

Thirteen students inducted into Tweed Youth Council

The Youth Council program hopes develop better relations between Council and Tweed’s young people, by encouraging a mutual respect, and providing opportunities to contribute to civic life in a constructive and meaningful manner.

Police operation Billinudgel Nature Reserve

Gary Opit, Brunswick Heads On 22 February residents on Jones Road noticed a major police operation with officers from eight police...

Soli becalmed in NSW Pro surf series

Local surfer Soli Bailey has finished in second place at the Mad Mex Maroubra Pro World Surf League Qualifying Series event held at Sydney’s Maroubra beach last weekend.

Interview with Claire Atkins from SHIT

I saw SHIT last year and I was blown away. Incredible script. Incredible acting.

New Greens team

Matthew O’Reilly President of CABS and a proud member of the NEW Byron Greens team It seems that some readers have...

Helping Our Kids, help our kids

The Lismore Samson Fitness Challenge kicks off tonight in Lismore with the express aim of raising much-needed funds for the Our Kids charity.

For some reason that I cannot fathom, I still hear people rave about Sofia Coppola’s Lost In Translation (2003) – I suspect it has something to do with Bill Murray’s cult following. Marie Antoinette (2006) was dreadful and Somewhere (2010) unwatchable, so I should not have been surprised to find that her latest outing is entirely underwhelming and vaguely ridiculous. Miss Martha (Nicole Kidman), with her helper Edwina (Kirsten Dunst), is in charge, as teacher and minder, of a handful of student boarders, including the photogenic Elle Fanning as Alicia.

They all live together in one of those white-columned, ice-cream-cake mansions that seem to exist only in darkly verdant, steamy Georgia. It is 1864, and the Civil War is nearing its bloody conclusion.

The setting is exclusively feminine, something which is tiresomely reiterated in cuts to Martha or Edwina viewing the distant masculine conflagration through a telescope (Coppola benefits from a simplistic attitude that equates quietness with subtlety). Into this claustrophobic, all-female environment comes Corporal McBurney (Colin Farrell), a wounded Union soldier. McBurney, on the mend, is a huge attraction for his pretty carers, all of whom are beguiled by the handsome newcomer’s easy charm – and none of them so much as the more mature, smitten Edwina.

There is a lot of near-seduction going on, but not much else, and Coppola’s decision to shoot her film in what would approximate the candlelight of the period only adds to the dullness. When McBurney finally makes a move on one of his hostesses, the consequences are drastic but comical in a way that Coppola would not have intended. Kidman’s coldness is perfectly suited to the part, but it’s sad to discover that Dunst has evolved into an actress who can be convincingly cast as a frumpy virginal spinster. (The passage of time takes no prisoners.) A gorgeous rendition of Aura Lee was a personal highlight, but overall it’s a bit of a yawn that is silly rather than tragic or creepy. Fabulous frocks (Stacey Battat) steal the show.


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Caravan park to pay $2.3mil plus to consumers

The NSW Court of Appeal has upheld the Supreme Court’s decision arising from the sale of the movable dwellings located on waterfront sites along the Tweed River.

Government modelling fails to reflect women’s interrupted careers

New research to be released this week analyses two decades of Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey to estimate the actual labour force experience of women over their life and accounts for working when super is not paid.

Ballina cleans up!

Clean Up Australia Day was a great success in Ballina, with the beach clean up event organised by Ballina Coastcare yesterday attracting twenty volunteers.

Lismore future councillor information sessions

With the delayed Local Government elections being held in September, several councils, including Lismore City Council, are holding information sessions for community members who are thinking about running for Council.