The Weekend Australian - Review - - Out & About - David Strat­ton MB DS Chris Boyd

(M) An out­stand­ing fea­ture de­but from Aus­tralian stage di­rec­tor Si­mon Stone, this mod­erni­sa­tion of Hen­rik Ib­sen’s The Wild Duck is dis­tin­guished not only by the in­tel­li­gent, eco­nom­i­cal, fluid di­rec­tion but also by the emo­tional in­ten­sity of the drama and the fine per­for­mances from mem­bers of a dis­tin­guished en­sem­ble cast that in­cludes Ge­of­frey Rush, Sam Neill, Ewen Les­lie, Paul Schneider, Mi­randa Otto, Anna Torv and new­comer Odessa Young, who was so good in Look­ing for Grace.

10 Cloverfield Lane (M) The lat­est film from the team be­hind Lost, the new Star Trek se­ries and Su­per 8, Bad Ro­bot Pro­duc­tions, has emerged as qui­etly as its name­sake, Cloverfield. Like that 2008 mon­ster sci­ence fic­tion film, Cloverfield Lane was filmed in se­cret. And that is ideally how the story should re­main for view­ers if they are to fully en­joy this film. So, what to tell with­out go­ing too far? The open­ing mon­tage shows a young woman whose car is knocked into a death-de­fy­ing roll be­fore she wakes up in a grey bunker, chained to a wall. Rather than use the vic­tim as the film’s pro­tag­o­nist, di­rec­tor Dan Tracht­en­berg main­tains ten­sion by shift­ing the fo­cus. It is best not to know where Cloverfield Lane will take you. Revel in the com­pe­tence of its craft and the play­ful­ness of its per­for­mances. And revel in not know­ing, for once.

The Witch: A New Eng­land Folk­tale (MA 15+) An aus­tere and gen­uinely creepy story set in a com­mu­nity of English Chris­tian set­tlers in the 1630s, this is the strik­ingly un­usual first fea­ture from Amer­i­can stage di­rec­tor and de­signer Robert Eg­gers. Not, as you may sup­pose, a con­ven­tional hor­ror film — though there are some very un­set­tling in­gre­di­ents — this is more in the clas­sic style of Dan­ish di­rec­tor Carl Dreyer’s wartime Day of Wrath than it is in line with con­tem­po­rary hor­ror films.

Fid­dler on the Roof Fid­dler is a clas­sic tale of tra­di­tion-bend­ing in the face of a wil­ful and in­de­pen­dent younger gen­er­a­tion. But when it comes to the pro­duc­tion of Jerry Bock, Shel­don Har­nick and Joseph Stein’s pre­cious mu­si­cal text, tra­di­tion rules like a tyrant. There are, nev­er­the­less, sur­prises to be found and en­joyed in the present stag­ing. Fid­dler is still re­mark­ably af­fect­ing, more do­mes­ti­cally than po­lit­i­cally though the refugee an­gle is es­pe­cially per­ti­nent to­day. The mu­sic is brassy and in­fec­tious and the story is de­liv­ered with un­abashed sin­cer­ity. Star­ring An­thony War­low as Tevye the Milk­man (pic­tured). Capi­tol Theatre, 13 Camp­bell Street, Hay­mar­ket. Wed­nes­day, 8pm. Tick­ets: $80-$113. Book­ings: 136 100. Un­til May 6.


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