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January 16, 2017

Film Review - The Dressmaker By Director Jocelyn Moorehouse

Starring Kate Winslet, Judy Davis, Liam Hemsworth and Hugo Weaving.
Winner of 5 AACTA Awards.
"Funny, poignant and full of heart.... destined to be an Aussie classic"- The Australian Women's Weekly.

The Dressmaker is a story about a beautiful young lady Tilly Dunnage who after years of working in Parisian fashion houses, returns home to a small outback Australian town. Using her style and charm she transforms the women of the town, deals with a past tragedy and falls in love along away.
A great story, Anne

January 09, 2017

Book Review - I am Malala : How one girl stood up for education and changed the world By Malala Yousafzai with Patricia Mc Cormick

'Malala is an inspiration to girl's and women all over the world' J.K Rowling.
Malala fought for her right to be educated, and payed the price when she was targeted by the Taliban on the way home from school one day.

In I am Malala surviving against all the odds has made her an international symbol of peace and the youngest ever winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.
The book contains five parts and also some discussion notes, an inspiring read. Anne

January 06, 2017

Movie Club - On The Waterfront

This month the Movie Club will be screening ‘On The Waterfront’, starring Marlon Brando and Eva Marie Saint, and directed by Elia Kazan.
Filmed in 1954 on location in the docks of New York, the film is a gritty look at the lives of the dock workers, mobs and unions. The film is based on the true stories reported by American investigative journalist Malcolm Johnson in his series Crime on the Waterfront. It is also important to note that while the film is based on Johnson’s investigative reports, the film can also be understood as a justification for Elia Kazan (the director) in his real-life decision to testify against his friends who were involved with the Communist Party. Combine these two layers of real-life inspiration and you get ‘On The Waterfront’. Therefore the political agenda is clear in the film and is highlighted through the character of Terry Malloy (Brando) and his underdog status.
Terry Malloy is an uneducated dock worker, tough and tender at the same time, who is unknowingly used to facilitate the death of Edie’s (Eva Marie Saint) brother who has disobeyed union bosses. This makes Terry question himself and question the status quo. This leads him to be the voice of the dockworkers and to stand up against the mob and the crime riddled docks.

‘On The Waterfront’ won 8 Oscars and impacted the way movies were made and the way actors acted—a move towards realism. The film follows a traditional story-telling structure where the hero (Terry Malloy) wins out against all odds and this is where it falls short. For all its realist depictions, the conclusion wasn’t subversive enough—things turned out all too well for Terry to fit into the realism genre the film sets up. Nonetheless the film has a punchy dialogue and strong characterisation which has made it a classic American film.
The film will be screened on Wednesday 11 January at 6pm at Narellan Library, Corner of Queen and Elyard Street, Narellan. Tea, coffee, and biscuits provided, BYO snacks are more than welcome. Stay after the screening to share your thoughts about the film and join in a discussion about the film.

January 02, 2017

Book Review - Mindfulness made Simple : an introduction to finding calm through mindfulness and meditation Forward by Elisha Goldstein PHD

Mindfulness made Simple shows you how to bring mindfulness and meditation into your daily life. Mindfulness is widely recognised for its calming, healing and restorative effects.

This book contains a step by step guide to your first meditation plus a further 5 basic and 8 advanced meditations to deepen your practice.
The book contains a number of inspiration quotes and tips. I found chapter 5 very helpful as it lists a number of simple meditations for common concerns eg stress and negative thought patterns. I found this book to be very helpful in deepening my meditation practice. It is easy to read and contains clear and concise instructions to follow. Anne

December 19, 2016

Book Review - “Blue Is The Warmest Color” By Julie Maroh, translated by Ivanka Hahnenberger

“Blue Is The Warmest Color” is a graphic novel that follows the protagonist, Clementine, as she moves through the motions of growing up, while trying to make sense of her infatuation with Emma: the girl with blue hair. Throughout the story Clem challenges the idea of her own identity, family and friendships.

“Blue Is The Warmest Color” is a great entry point into the graphic novel genre. The text is structured around diary entries which act like traditional chapter breaks, which makes it easy to read. The written text is fast-paced, while the images offer a tender unfolding of Clem’s life. All of this contributes to a story that is exhilarating and emotive.
*This graphic novel contains explicit content and is intended for an adult audience.