Category Archives: Uncategorized

J.R. ‘Bob’ Dobbs and the Church of the SubGenius (2019)

Director: Director: Sandy K. Boone

Featuring: Penn Jillette, Richard Linklater, Nick Offerman, Gerald V. Casale

“Fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke!”


I do have some memory of the Church of the Subgenius and alt.slack when I first went on the internet in the mid-90s but had never really looked into it that much. I did however end up hanging out with a slightly similar group on alt.religion.kibology until well into the 2000s that had some people who I am sure where part of the same group.

After the documentary I talked to Paul Elliot of the now closed Polyester Books who used to distribute Church of the Subgenius and showed everyone the Dr Bob background on his phone.

The documentary follows a group of friends who decide to set up their own religion as a joke to appeal to other marginalised people like themselves. They never expected it to last hence 1998 being set as the year of Armageddon in their religion as it seemed far off in the future at the time.

I did enjoy the parts about sending pamphlets to random people and connecting with other people such as the writer of the Famous Potatoes zine. They also started broadcasting over CB radio and were surprised when other people started talking back.

The “pinks” were born representing the normal people and there was a conspiracy by them to supress your SLACK. Exactly what slack is, is not really explained but then again people do not ask that core concepts of other religions are explained.

The figure of the famous pipe smoking Dr Bob was from a public domain clip art library and its original source was lost to history.

After sending the original Subgenius literature to over 150 publishers in the USA a chance find by a book publisher in someone’s car leads to a publishing deal and they bought an artist on board to lay out the book properly in line with their beliefs.

As the founders say themselves you never know where references to Church of the Subgenius will pop up as it was an underground cult that never wanted that many members. It is good having the celebrity interviews and would have helped the Kickstarter funding and getting it screened but I think it would have worked without it.

Due to the popularity of the book an event is booked in San Francisco over two nights in a 900 seat theatre. Again the founders are surprised to the reaction to their show including the part with the smashing the watch and other people offer up their real watches to be smashed. After the success of the show they get correspondence from a church member saying they are not taking it seriously even though they wrote in the founding document for the religion that the entire point is to not take it seriously.

The pipe smoking Dr Bob was an easily indefinable meme before that was even a thing and it the group was popular with the media whenever they wanted a weird story to cover.

As with any church there will be splitters in fact they encouraged it. This did come back to bite them on the arse when people started talking out on their behalf after disasters and in particular the Columbine massacre. This had consequences for them in that their venue booking was cancelled and another church that tried to help them out was threatened.

9/11 is what changed everything as hate groups and religious extremists are now targeted as a national security threat. There is more us vs them in real life so having a religious group based hating the “normals” does not seem as relevant. As one of the interviewees said Donald Trump is the most Subgenius president ever.

It was a great documentary and managed to fit a lot in its short running time. It could have been a mini-series easily and they would have had to leave a lot of things out. The clips were entertaining but I am not sure they were all meant to have been played on a big screen as they were pretty low resolution.

That was a lot of people to wrangle for interviews and I was surprised they were still talking to each other after some of the things that have happened. Sometimes it is better not to meet the people you know from online but in this case it seems the people in the group have life-long friendships.

MIFF 2019: Shortlist

Shaw Brothers Double Feature – 36 Chambers of Shaolin/The Eight Diagram Pole Fighter
The Day Shall Come
Hearts and Bones
Martha: A Picture Story
Measure for Measure
Iron Fists and Kung Fu Kicks
No Time for Quiet
Happy New Year, Collin Burstead
Fire Will Come
Memories of My Body
The Halt
We Are Little Zombies
First Love
It Must Be Heaven
The Tomorrow Man
The Gasoline Theives
The Kill Team
The Art of Self-Defense
The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash
Amazing Grace
Mr Jimmy
Bros: When the Screaming Stops
PJ Harvey: A Dog Called Money
Friedkin Uncut
Meeting Gorbachev
Midnight Family
Our Time Machine
Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project
The Amazing Johnanthan Documentary
Los Reyes
Picture Character
The Seer and the Unseen
Present. Perfect
The Machine
The Hidden City
Return Home
Europa Europa
Shadows of Our Forgotten Ancestors
You Don’t Nomi
Greener Grass
Come to Daddy
Violence Voyager
Memory – The Origins of Alien
The Waiting Room
Animation Shorts
WTF Shorts
The Art of the Score: The Film Music of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis
The World Online
Australian Cities on Film
Morgana (talk)
Bruce Beresford in Conversation

Parasite (2019)

Director: Bong Joon-ho
Starring: Song Kang-ho, Lee Sun-kyun, Jo Yeo-jeong, Choi Woo-sik, Jang Hye-jin, Park So-dam


The Kim family is a lower socio-economic/bogan family sharing a grubby basement flat making whatever money they can from odd jobs such as folding pizza boxes. They still seem to be good and nothing about them says they are breaking the law to try and make money. It feels like you need to understand more about Korean society and culture to get the most out of this movie.

A telling scene is where the son says he failed the university entrance exam four times and the father says 500 university graduates turn up for a job opening as a security guard.

An opportunity presents itself for the son to get a tutor job for a rich family and once he gets the position he engineers ways to get the rest of his family into the house as an art therapy teacher, driver and finally housekeeper. Lies beget more lies and build until they meet someone with a bigger lie.

As usual Song Kang-ho is brilliant in this and I try to see him in every movie he is in even the ones not directed by Bong Joon-ho as he turns up in Park Chan-wook’s movies also.

The settings are really good also with the small flat the family lives in and the rich family’s house once owned by a famous architect. What the family does not know is that brilliant architects often have their own secrets and sometimes don’t tell them even when they sell the house.

It is the stated policy of the South Korean government that they want to make the best movies in the world with the aim of having a movie that eventually wins an Academy Award. There is a movie quota system in South Korea and local movies often beat Hollywood blockbusters on local release. Bong Joon-Ho stocked up on DVDs and Blurays when he was in Sydney for the film festival as most of the content delivery is online in South Korea.

If you are a social studies fan you will like this movie as the rich characters talk about people “not overstepping their boundary” and complain about the smell of people poorer than them. The son of Mr Park almost rumbles the entire scheme by saying they all smell the same.

I would not say this is Bon Joon-Ho’s best work as I still like the Host more even just for the part where Song Kang-Ho is crying so much he can’t run away. If this film gets more people to go back and watch the earlier work of the director I would support it.

I was perplexed as to the actions of some of the characters in the movie. I cannot think why Mr Kim would decide to do what he did. The scheme had already unravelled at that point and the extra action would not make any difference.

Where and when – Asian cinema history

As well as I can remember, all the Asian movies I have seen in the cinema and where I saw them. I used to save all my pocket diaries so I had the exact time and date in most cases. I did go to Chinatown Cinema a lot back in the early 2000s. These days I prefer going to Hoyts as it is nicer for the same movies.


Sausalito – Chinatown Cinema

A Fighter’s Blues – Chinatown Cinema

Bullets Over Summer – Chinatown Cinema

Chinese Midnight Express 2 – Chinatown Cinema

Comeuppance – Chinatown Cinema

Conspiracy – Chinatown Cinema

For Bad Boys Only – Chinatown Cinema

Help!!! – Chinatown Cinema

Jiang Hu: The Triad Zone – Chinatown Cinema

Legend of the Flying Swordsman – Chinatown Cinema

Those Were the Days – Chinatown Cinema

Battle Royale – Lumiere

Ring – Lumiere


June 8th 2000

Unknown movie – Chinatown Cinema


June 15th 2000

Flying Swordsman – Chinatown Cinema


October 5th 2000

Emperor & the Assassin – Cinema Nova


October 26th 2000

Fong Sai Yuk – Chinatown Cinema


November 27th 2000

Unknown movie – Chinatown Cinema




Bakery Amour – Chinatown Cinema

Comic King – Chinatown Cinema

Healing Hearts – Chinatown Cinema

HIT TEAM – Chinatown Cinema

Master Q – Chinatown Cinema

My Name is Nobody – Chinatown Cinema

There’s a Secret in my Soup – Chinatown Cinema


January 5th 2001

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon – Cinema Nova


February 1st 2001

Unknown movie – Chinatown Cinema


February 14th 2001

Wu Yen – Chinatown Cinema


March 20th 2001

In the Mood for Love with Q&A featuring Tony Leung – Kino Cinema


April 9th 2001

HIT TEAM – Chinatown Cinema


April 22nd 2001

Butterfly and Sword/Full Contact – Treasury Theatre


April 26th 2001

Jet Li Double Bill – Chinatown Cinema


May 26th 2001

Project S/The Assassin – Treasury Theatre


June 7th 2001

Wing Chun/Swordsman 2 – Chinatown Cinema


July 20th 2001

Joint Security Area – Forum Theatre (MIFF 2001)


August 1st 2001

Time and Tide – Village Bourke St (MIFF 2001)


August 2nd 2001

Iron Monkey/Bride with White Hair – Chinatown Cinema


September 20th 2001

City on Fire/Bullet in the Head – Chinatown Cinema


September 23rd 2001

The Storm Riders/The Blade – Treasury Theatre


September 26th 2001

The Man from Hong Kong – Treasury Theatre


October 6th 2001

Princess Mononoke – Readings Cinema, Sydney


October 19th 2001

The Phantom Lover/The True Story of Dr Sun Yat Sen – Harbour City Cinema, Sydney


October 28th 2001

Wonder 7/Wicked City – Treasury Theatre (not actually sure I went to this)


November 1st 2001

Once Upon a Time in China 1 & 2 – Chinatown Cinema


November 8th 2001

Joint Security Area – Treasury Theatre


December 6th 2001

New Legend of Shaolin/Operation Scorpio – Chinatown Cinema



Once Upon a Time in China III/Young and Dangerous – Chinatown Cinema

Beauty and the Breast – Chinatown Cinema

Mighty Baby – Chinatown Cinema

So Close – Chinatown Cinema


MIFF Schedule:

25th July 2002

You Shoot, I Shoot – Capitol


26th July 2002

Nabi: The Butterfly – Capitol

Looking for Bruce Lee – Capitol

Musa: The Warrior – Village Bourke St


27th July 2002

Dead or Alive – Village Bourke St


31st July 2002

Teenage Hooker Became Killing Machine in Daekaroh – Greater Union


1st August 2002

Unknown double bill – Chinatown Cinema


2nd August 2002

Volcano High – Village Bourke St

The Princess Blade – Village Bourke St


3rd August 2002

Dead or Alive 2: Birds


6th August 2002

Volcano High – Village Bourke St


7th August 2002

Happiness of the Katakuris – Forum Theatre


9th August 2002

A Tree of Palme – Capitol


11th August 2002

Take Care of My Cat – Forum Theatre




MIFF Schedule:

26th July 2003

Come Drink With Me with introduction by Cheng Pei-Pei – Village Bourke St

29th July 2003

Yesterday – Fourm Theatre

1st August 2003

Parasite Dolls – Capitol Theatre

3rd August

Infernal Affairs – Village Bourke St

7th August 2003

A Better Tomorrow/A Better Tomorrow II – Chinatown Cinema

8th August 2003

My Life As McDull – Forum Theatre

9th August 2003

Save the Green Planet! – Village Bourke St


Fantasia – Chinatown Cinema

18th July 2004

Comrades, Almost a Love Story – ACMI

MIFF Schedule:

22nd July 2004

Five Venoms – Village Bourke St


23rd July 2004

The Heroic Ones – Village Bourke St


3rd August 2004

The Adventures of Iron Pussy – ACMI


4th August 2004

Oldboy – Village Bourke St


6th August 2004

Dragon Head – Village Bourke St


7th August 2004

Breaking News – Forum Theatre

Running on Karma – Capitol Theatre


8th August 2004

Park Chan-Wook Q&A – Festival Club, Forum Theatre

Ong Bak – Village Bourke St


4th November 2004

Bichunmoo – Chinatown Cinema


Kung Fu Hustle – Chinatown Cinema

Kung Fu Mah-jong – Chinatown Cinema

MIFF Schedule:

Saturday 23rd July 2005

Casshern – Capitol Theatre

Tuesday 26th July 2005

McDull, Prince de la Bun – Forum Theatre

Saturday 30th July 2005

Crying Fist – Capitol Theatre

Godzilla: Final Wars – Village Bourke St

Sunday 31st July 2005

Stephen Chow Q&A – Festival Club at the Forum Theatre

Tuesday 2nd August 2005

Public Toilet – Forum Theatre

Friday 5th August 2005

Izo – Village Bourke St

Sunday 7th August

Election & festival after party where I met Johnnie To – Village Bourke St


MIFF Schedule:

Thursday 27th July 2006

Great Hapiness Space – Tale of an Osaka Love Thief – ACMI

Election 2 – Regent Theatre


Monday 31st July 2006

Funky Forest: First Contact – ACMI


Tuesday 1st August 2006

The Short Films of Royston Tan – ACMI


Thursday 3rd August 2006

The Nine Lives of Korean Cinema (Forum) – ACMI

Sympathy for Lady Vengeance – Regent Theatre


Saturday 5th August 2006

Great Yokai War – ACMI


Tuesday 8th August 2006

The Host – Regent Theatre


Wednesday 9th August 2006

Seven Swords – Regent Theatre


20th March 2007

The King and the Clown – Chinatown Cinema

4th August 2007

Aachi & Ssipak (MIFF 2007)

Flashpoint – Chinatown Cinema


CJ7 – Chinatown Cinema


19th March 2009

Kung Fu Chefs – Hoyts Melbourne Central

MIFF Schedule:

15th July 2009

Chainsaw Maid – Greater Union


8th August 2009

The Sky Crawlers – Greater Union

The Chaser – Greater Union

Thirst – Greater Union


9th August 2009

Ong Bak 2


20th August 2009

Kung Fu Cyborg – Greater Union


1st September 2009

Ponyo – Cinema Nova


15th October 2009

The Good, The Bad and the Weird – ACMI


19th December 2009

Storm Warriors – Village Crown



1st June 2010

Mother – The Astor Theatre

Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame

MIFF Schedule:

24th July 2010

Machete Maidens Unleashed! – ACMI


6th August 2010

Symbol – Forum Theatre


6th October 2010

Legend of the Fist – Return of Chen Zhen – Hoyts Melbourne Central


21st October 2010

Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame – Hoyts Melbourne Central


25th May 2011

Zu Warriors from Magic Mountain/The Blade – ACMI


1st June 2011

Shanghai Blues/The Master (1992) – ACMI

MIFF Schedule:

25th July 2011

13 Assassins

26th July 2011

End of Animal

2nd August 2011

The Unjust

The Yellow Sea

13th November 2011

Filipino horror movie double – Cinema Nova

28th December 2011

Flying Swords of Dragon Gate 3D – Hoyts Chadstone


March 27th 2012

The Raid – Hoyts Melbourne Central

September 10th 2012

The Frontline – ACMI

September 11th 2012

War of the Arrows – ACMI


Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons – Hoyts Melbourne Central

MIFF Schedule:

Sunday 28th July 2013

The Act of Killing – Greater Union


Wednesday 8th August 2013

Aim High in Creation! – Forum Theatre


Thursday 9th August 2013

Talking Pictures – Juche Showtime: Capturing the DPRK on Film – ACMI

Comrade Kim Goes Flying – ACMI

Friday 9th August 2013

Hong Kil Dong – ACMI


Saturday 10th August 2013

Talking Pictures – Caught in the Act: Indonesia and The Act of Killing – Wheeler Centre

Action, HK Style at QAGOMA, Brisbane

Friday 18th October 2013

Drunken Master

Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow

Saturday 19th October 2013

Aces Go Places

Pedicab Driver

God of Gamblers

Kung Fu Hustle


Sunday 20th October 2013

Dirty Ho

My Young Auntie


The Raid 2 – Cinema Nova

MIFF 2014:

Why Don’t You Play in Hell?

The Tale of Princess Kaguya

The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness


The Imp

Irma Vep

Mr Vampire

The Search for Weng Weng


MIFF 2015:

The Look of Silence

Battles Without Honour and Humanity

In conversation with Joshua Oppenheimer – The Wheeler Centre


Shin Godzilla – Cinema Nova

Sky on Fire – Hoyts Melbourne Central

The Age of Shadows – Cinema Nova

MIFF 2016:

Seoul Station / Train to Busan (double bill)


Cook Up a Storm – Hoyts Melbourne Central


Big Brother – Hoyts Melbourne Central

L Storm – Hoyts Melbourne Central

Project Guttenberg – Hoyts Chadstone

Rampant – Hoyts Melbourne Central

Shadow – Hoyts Melbourne Central


MIFF 2018:

Outrage Coda

The Spy Gone North


MICF 2019: Friendlyjordies presents John Howard Really Sucked

Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2019

Lithuanian Club, Friday 12th April 2019 (Late show)

Jordan Shanks stated in his show he does not really care about reviews and seeing as the show’s run sold out (this was a bonus show), but I just wanted to say a few words about it. The last thing I saw in the venue was the After Hours Cabaret Club which feature Memphis Mae pouring McDonalds nuggets all over herself.

As he said himself he is preaching to the choir in his show as he knows which end of the political spectrum he is delivering his message to. It was a very young audience and it is a fallacy that young people these days do not care about anything. They care about too much and having grown up with social media as a part of their lives they are right across important social and political issues as are discussed in the show.

One of the jokes in the show was that it is not just a stand up show. It is a long form version of one of Friendlyjordies’ YouTube videos where he gets to expand on one of the topics that he would usually do in a video.

The main premise of the show is exposing what at poor economic manager John Howard was of the economy with many twists and turns that go into explaining this. There was a detour back to the 1940s which I would have liked to see as a show of its’ own but I’m just weird.

The $1.3 Trillion figure that the Howard government cost Australia can’t have just come out of his arse, he must have gotten it somewhere. I can’t say I have heard it mentioned anywhere else, but then again I don’t really read the Financial Review or pay that much attention to financial advice.

Having the show on the day after the 2019 Federal Election was called added an extra something. Friendlyjordies knows his audience and also says he is not aligned with one side or the other.

What he does do is encourage the audience to get their apathetic friends to register to vote as the electoral roles close the day before Good Friday (18th April) and you have no business in complaining if you couldn’t be bothered to vote.

There were a lot of laughs in the show mixed in with the factoids. Some people laughed at oddly specific things, like the two women sitting next to me who laughed at the brand of make up in one slide.

The show was filmed by Luke their photographer/videographer and Sandi says they always use him. Not sure if they are going to release a DVD or it will just be used for promotion like the last time they were in Melbourne for a show.

He did take the opportunity to do some edge lord bullshit like the school shootings joke which amused him greatly as the audience took about a minute to decide if it was funny or not. Using dead soldiers at Kokoda as a punchline was pretty low also. I am sure he will not get any blowback for using ANZAC as a joke as he is not Muslim, a person or colour or female.

Cheap shots abound in this show, but they come and go so quickly they kind of blur into each other. A bit rich piling onto Yumi Stynes when everyone else in the mainstream media he claims to hate has done so too.

When I was looking to get into university the most popular course was Journalism at RMIT, to the point they made 4000 people a year sit the Journalism Entrance Test. I made it through to the interview stage that was for about 20 first year places. These days why would you even bother as there are many other ways to get your opinion out to the masses even if nobody reads it.

I do know some people in the media but mainly the good ones such as community radio or people I have known for a long time. I do sympathise with people from the Age who had to go work at the Australian. There are good people working at ABC 774 Melbourne as they used to be on RRR FM in Melbourne.

I would like to see Friendlyjordies do a guest spot on Biggsy’s show on RRR FM as they could have an informed chat on several topics of note.

He has done a video on Melbourne vs. Sydney since doing his show down here. I would like to see more of it outside of the usual tropes.

If you have missed the show’s Melbourne run then you are too late since it has already sold out. Other state hopefully in the future.

In all a good economics lecture and political history lesson with the “cool teacher” from your high school who let you swear in class and call him by his first name.

Upgrade (2018)

Director: Leigh Whannell

Starring: Melanie Vallejo, Logan Marshall-Green, Abby Craden, Harrison Gilbertson, Benedict Hardie, Richard Cawthorne, Christopher Kirby, Betty Gabriel

Upgrade Trailer

Whoops! I mean…

Tagline: The Cyberpunk movie we never knew we needed…

Despite their popularity, I have never seen any of the SAW franchise or Hostel as although it has been said “Humans take perverse pleasure in sham agony and death (roller coasters, horror flicks, televangelism). “ (Uncle Al) I am not that interested in it apart from the Raid movies.

Now that Leigh and James are established directors in Hollywood they can get to do their own thing from time to time and this seems more like a passion project than a traditional blockbuster. I did not know it was even filmed in Melbourne until the robotic voice at the start announced Film Victoria as being involved.

We have already entered the biomechanical age thanks to the endless middle eastern war in Afghanistan, it is called a graveyard of empires for good reason and all those soldiers being blown up by IEDs in Iraq has led to advances in artificial limbs and replacement body parts. We are not really at the stage where people would want to replace a body part for greater advantage as yet.

Also the interface and infection control must have been worked out in the future as a friend’s contact lens scratched his eye and he was done for the day.

The story is a standard revenge plot with a tech billionaire offering a deal the hero can’t refuse so he can walk again and also find his wife’s killer. Complicating matters is there is already a detective on the case and our hero has to pretend he is still a quadriplegic.

Although it is a fully tech-integrated world there are still low tech spaces like the Old Bones bar where technology is forbidden and surely there would be hippie communes in this world?

I did like the VR refugees as it reminded me of the “Better than Life” episode of Red Dwarf and also the Polish/Japanese movie Avalon set totally in VR.

There were very good fight sequences and stunt coordination with a nod to the Raid movies as they seem to have influenced a lot of movies these days.

I had no problem with the acting and the story seemed to flow well. It did seem to be a believable world with a balance between sci-fi utopia and scummy sections. The utopia is for the rich and the poor people get the worst deal. Docklands is also a slum I would agree. Great shots going over the Bolte Bridge.

With Cyberpunk 2077 coming out in the near future I am sure there will be talk of a movie adaptation, not sure they really need it or one of Deus Ex with this film out. There is enough storyline in those two games that they don’t really need a movie made of them the same as Skyrim.


Cyberpunk (1990) Full documentary

Asylum Seeker Resource Centre Benefit photos (2007 – 2017)

Melbourne International Comedy Festival (2007 – ongoing)

Birdhouse – A Celebration of the They Might Be Giants
featuring Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, Tim Minchin, Steven Gates, Aurora Kurth, Ennio Pozzebon,
Ross McFerran, Eden Ottignon, Ben McKenzie, Particle Man, Josh Earl, Mal Webb, Andrew Mclelland,
Geraldine Quinn, Scott Brennan, Mick Stuart, Cam Rogers, Simon Hall, Karlis Zaid, Otto Rot, Sammy J, Birdman, Kirsty Byrne, Bec Healy
New Ballroom, Trades Hall
Saturday, 21st April 2007


23 Positions in a One Night Stand
A benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre (ASRC)
with Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, The New Earth-Hour Generation, Otto Rot, Renegades of Folk, Sheridan, Jim Lawson, Geraldine Quinn, Anyone for Tennis?, Simon Hall, Andrew McClelland, Xani Kolac, Beau Heartbreaker, Michelle Baginski, Zack Adams, Wes Snelling, Benn Bennett, Kirsty Burn, Penny Ashton, Astrid Rot, Aurora Kurth, Alan Brough, Eddie Perfect, Hooray for Everything, Birdmann, Carl Pannuzzo, Ali McGregor, Adam Hills, Lize Wolgramm
Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2008
Trades Hall, Saturday 29th March 2008


Life on Mars?
Benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with MC Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, Jordie Lane, Beau Heartbreaker, Wes Snelling, Claire Jenkins, Defah Dattner, Clare Bowditch, Aurora Kurth, Axis of Awesome, Geraldine Quinn, Tim Minchin, Andrew McLelland, Stephen Gates, The Audreys, Elana Stone, Kristy Burn, Simon Hall, Scott Brennan, Ali McGregor, The Suitcase Royale with Sveta Dobranoch, Flap!, Tripod, Astrid Rot
Trades Hall, Saturday 18th April 2009


Something Good – A Tribute to Carole King
Benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, Wes Snelling, Pastel Vespa, Andrew McClelland and the Monkees, Elana Stone, Kelly Wolfgramm, Geraldine Quinn, Penny Larkins, Carl Pannuzzo, Georgia Fields, Aurora Kurth, Defah Dattner, Clare Bowditch, Die Roten Punkte, Eddie Perfect, Kirsty Joosten, Tripod, Mike McLeish, Gabe Andrews, DEATHCLOCK (Axis of Awesome and Dead Cat Bounce), Rebecca Barnard, Xani and Meg Kolac, Lior, Nick Roy, Ali McGregor
Trades Hall, Saturday 10th April 2010


Just Like Heaven
Benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with MC Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, Mal Webb, Wes Snelling, Tully Sumner, Rebecca Barnard, Angie Hart, Ladygarden (Clare Bowditch, Aurora Kurth, Defah Dattner), Eddie Perfect, Geraldine Quinn, Anyone for Tennis?, Kirsty Joosten, Selina Jenkins, D. Rogers, The Twoks, Flap!, Nicholas Roy, Adam Coad, Stephen Gates, Die Roten Punkte, Tripod, Ali McGregor
Bella Union, Saturday 16th April 2011


Somebody to Love – a tribute to the music of Queen
2012 benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with MC Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, Geraldine Quinn, Selina Jenkins, Simon Hall, Andrew McClelland, Nilusha Dassenaike, Tina del Twiste, Ben McKenzie, Kirsty Joosten, Helen Yotis, The Twoks, Mike McLeish, Sophie Koh, Eddie Perfect, Tripod, Anyone for Tennis?, Karlis Zaid, Wes Snelling, Die Roten Punkte, Stephen Gates, Emma Donovan
Bella Union, Saturday 14th April 2012


Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough: A Tribute to the Songs of Michael Jackson
2013 benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with Casey Bennetto, Scott Edgar, Wes Snelling, Benny Davis, Sammy J, Carl Pannuzzo, Pippa Evans, Deffah Datner, Aurora Kurth, Clare Bowditch, Axis of Awesome, Georgia Fields, Sarah Carroll, Mike McLeish, Selina Jenkins, Kirsty Joosten, Ben McKenzie, Andrew McClelland, Die Roten Punkte, Virginia Gay, Sophie Koh, the Von Muiznieks Family Singers, Eddie Perfect, Geraldine Quinn, Dave Callan, The Twoks, Eliza & Talei Wolfgramm, Ali McGregor, Simon Hall
Bella Union, Saturday 13th April 2013


Cheek to Cheek – a Tribute to the music of Fred Astaire
2014 benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
Musical directors: Biddy Connor, Enio Pozzebon
The Band: Zoe Barry, Nick Karasvvidis, Mathew Bird, Enzo Ruberto, Sophie Dunn, Tully Sumner, David Henry, Lizzy Welsh
Special guests: MC Tina del Twist, Casey Bennetto, Bobby & the Pins, Die Roten Punkte, Scott Edgar, Andrew McClelland, Mikelangelo, Saint Clare, Randy the puppet, Eden Read, Em Rusciano, Yon, Nath Valvo, the Glittery Tapping Wonderland Dancers
Northcote Town Hall, Saturday 12th April 2014


I Got the Music(al) in Me!
An ASRC Benefit
with MC Tina del Twist, Andrew McClelland, Anne Edmonds, Aurora Kurth, Die Roten Punkte, Em Rusciano, Geraldine Quinn, Luis (Lessons with Luis), Nath Valvo, Randy the Puppet, Rhonda Butchmore, Scott Brennan, Scott Edgar, Tom Ballard, Yon, Andrew Hansen
Toff in Town, Sunday 12th April 2015


Dolly! Asylum Seekers Resource Centre Benefit
with MC Tina del Twist, Andy Saunders, Anne Edmonds, Dolly Diamond, Geraldine Quinn, Gillian Cosgriff, Nath Valvo, Otto Rot, Randy, Scott Brennan, Selina Jenkins, Shirley Gnome, Tessa Waters, Thomas Jaspers, Trevor Ashley, Bob
Band – Biddy Connor, Dave Williams, Enio Pozzebon, Kate Connor, Matt Bird, Ross McFerran, Steph O’Hara, Tully Sumner, Vicenzo Roberto, Zoe Barry
Toff in Town, Sunday 3rd April 2016


Bold as Brass
A benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with MC Geraldine Quinn, Adam Richards, Andy & Luca Saunders, Casey Bennetto, Gillian Cosgriff, Kai Smythe, Kai Smythe (Hairy Soul Man), Michelle Brasier, Otto Rot, Sammy J, Scott Brennan, Scott Edgar, Tom Ballard, Wes Snelling
Band Biddy Connor, David Barclay, Geraldine Quinn, Lizzy Welsh, Matt Bird, Sonia Horbelt, Steph O’Hara, Tully Sumner, Vincenzo Roberto, Zoe Barry
The Toff in Town, Sunday 9th April 2017

I missed 2018 unfortunately due to not living in Melbourne at the time.


These Machines Cut Razor Wire (2012 – 2014)

These Machines Cut Razor Wire 2012
Benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with MCs Denise Hylands/Les Thomas, The Cartridge Family, Kate Walker, Tully Sumner, Fraser A. Gorman, Nigel Wearne and the Cast Iron Promises, Alex Hallahan and the Woodland Hunters, Uncle Bill, Bell St Delays, Jed Rowe Band, The Stetson Family, Jeff Lang, Melbourne Mass Gospel Choir
Thornbury Theatre, Sunday 15th April 2012


These Machines Cut Razor Wire 2013
Benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with Les Thomas, Beautiful Change, Suzannah Espie, Fraser Gorman, Nigel Wearne, The Stillsons (duo of Justin Bernasconi and Cat Canteri), Alison Ferrier, Ruth Lindsey, Bill Jackson, Ashley Davies, Chris Wilson, Jeff Lang, Charles Jenkins, Mandy Connell, Jed Rowe
Thornbury Theatre, Sunday 14th April 2013

These Machines Cut Razor Wire 2014
Benefit for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre
with Van Walker, Saint Jude, Les Thomas, Little Foot, Oh Pep Duo, Brooke Russell, Justin Bernasconi, Cat Canteri, Mandy Connell, Ben Smith Band, Berlin Postmark, Ruth Lindsey
Bella Union, Saturday 22nd March 2014


Other events

A Nymphtastic Christmas
with the Nymphs, Henry Wagons, Cash Savage, James Kenyon, Mikelangelo and Saint Clare, Tracy McNeil and Luke Sinclair, Sweet Jean, Major Chord
Toff in Town, Wednesday 18th December 2013
Ticket sales raising money for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre

Monster Fest 2018 – Category III: The Untold Story of Hong Kong Exploitation Cinema (2018)

Director: Calum Waddell

Featuring: Daniel Yee Heng Chan, Godfrey Ho, Josie Ho, Mike Hostench, Bey Logan, Sean Tierney, Calum Waddell, Anthony Wong, Gan Kwok-Leung

I can’t really say I am a big fan of Category III movies, the one time I saw one was at the dodgy VCD theatre of Chinatown Cinema and it was There’s a Secret in My Soup. Was the one time I saw one of the security guards in the centre site down and watch part of the movie (the sausage on the power drill scene.) I am sensitive to movies with violence against women as there is enough of it in real life and I don’t like seeing it at all so I decided to pass on most of these movies.

These days I know a lot more people who watch Hong Kong movies and enjoy these type of movies so I thought I would check out this documentary to find out more about them.

The documentary is structured with various interviews from people with short clips from each movie in between. I would have liked to see longer clips and have them full screen but some of these movies are hard to find and only on VCD now so quality would be an issue.

There were an interesting range of people being interviewed. I hadn’t heard of some of them before, but they had some interesting opinions.

Anthony Wong was the best, there was a mention of him at an awards ceremony. I asked on a movie forum and someone posted the following.

13th Hong Kong Film Awards – Anthony Wong wins best actor

The 14th Hong Kong Film Awards Winners

Anthony is not afraid to speak his mind and stand up for things

Compared to documentaries such as Mark Hartley’s Not Quite Hollywood or the Canon Films doco it seems a bit more standard. I still have had people ask me when it is coming out on DVD.

There were quite a few stories behind the production of the documentary but I won’t go into them here. The same is true with every documentary though.

As an introduction to the Category III section of the Hong Kong film industry this movie does its job well and all the movies featured are listed at the end so you can look them up after.

If you know a bit more about the films then by all means still watch it, just don’t expect to learn more than you already know.

Rampant (2018)

Director: Kim Sung-hoon

Starring: Hyun Bin, Dong-Gun Jang, Eui-sung Kim, Ju-hyuk Kim, Woo-jin Jo, Dal-hwan Jo, Derek Chouinard

This movie was produced by the same people who did Train to Busan and I have to answer the question does it top that movie? Not really, but it is a different movie and it seemed they wanted to go in another direction with it.

In a bit of a confusing prologue a ship on fire is raided and one of the party is attacked, only to turn and kill his whole family and the village. Cut to three days before and we see the rebels meeting with the smuggler on the ship to get weapons for a revolt.

The revolt is found out and the plotters are tortured to reveal the ringleaders, but the crown prince wants to spare the plotters as he is the real one behind it. He makes the ultimate sacrifice, taking his own life.

Prince Ganglim (Hyun Bin) arrives back in the country from Qing unaware that any attack has taken place. He is attacked by assassins and encounters the undead shortly after (they are referred to as ‘demons’ in the movie.) He ends up being rescued by a group of villagers who explain what happened and beg him to get help from the capital. He is a reluctant prince and does not want to go but eventually agrees when he sees how desperate the situation is.

Cut back to the capital and the war minister is making plans of his own including getting rid of one of the assassins who escaped the undead and making sure a concubine is attacked by a demon to spread the infection.

The film slows down a lot every time it cuts from the scenes with the zombies to the palace intrigue, it almost seems they are from different movies or from one of the popular Korean historical TV dramas. It seems to be something you would have in a TV series where you have more time to tell the story and not a movie.

The prince leaves the village with some protectors but they get stopped at a checkpoint and told only the prince can go to the capital. He promises to return with some soldiers.

The stakes go up once the action moves to the capital as there is an attack on the king and the zombie situation gets out of hand. The war minister has planned this as he wants to start again from scratch and not be subservient to the Qing dynasty.

They do have the guns from the smuggler by this point but only the war minister and his cronies have them and the prince has to make do with swords. After fighting all night they manage to beat back the zombies, who retreat in the daylight as it burns them. Will they make it through the next night? Will the zombies escape from the palace into the capital? What happened to the village and the promise of the soldiers to defend it?

It is an interesting premise to have a zombie movie set in a historical period but it does slow it down somewhat in this case with the historical drama sections mixed in. The weapons they had to use were a bit basic. Surely they would have had access to the Hawcha rocket arrow launcher to take out hordes of zombies. The script writers seems to conveniently forgotten it. I have no idea which years of the Joeson dynasty it takes place in though.

There was no problem with the costumes (I do love those tall hats they wear) and settings as they all seemed to look good especially the palace where some of the heaviest fighting takes place.

The characters seem to be archetypes with the bad guy being stereotypically evil, the good buy being a reluctant hero and the other characters filling the usual supporting roles.

In comparison to Train to Busan the stakes don’t seem to be as high as you don’t get to find out enough about the characters to care about them. The action scenes look cool and there is plenty of gore with the zombies attack but it doesn’t seem to have the same impact.

I would still recommend this movie if you are a fan of zombie movies and historical action movies. For the next movie they should do a zombie movie in space to mix it up a bit.