FILM GREATS: The Hours (2000), Kidman plays Virginia Woolf

NICOLE KIDMAN (RIGHT) AS VIRGINIA WOOLF, WRITER: DID JUSTICE TO THE CHARACTER.

NICOLE KIDMAN (RIGHT) AS LUCILLE BALL COMEDIAN: RIGHT STAR, PERFECT REDITION.

IF ONLY LUCILLE BALL WERE ALIVE, SHE’D KNOW THAT KIDMAN WAS THE RIGHT STAR TO PLAY HER, GIVING HER A PERFECT RENDITION OF HER CHARACTER! SHE WON A GOLDEN GLOBE AWARD FOR HER ROLE.

FRANK MORRIS

NICOLE KIDMAN IS GAME. IN THE MAKING OF THE HOURS, KIDMAN HAS DECIDED TO STEP INTO THE SHOES OF VIRGINIA WOOLF, ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL WRITERS OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY.

REMARKABLY, KIDMAN’S TALL NEAR-FLAWLESS FRAME HAS BEEN TRANSFORMED INTO THE GAUNT, SLIGHTLY STOOPED FIGURE OF THE TRAGIC AND DEPRESSION-WRACKED WOOLF.
KIDMAN IS WOOLF. A JUDGEMENT ON HOW SHE ACQUITS HERSELF IN THE ROLE OF THE COMPLEX WOOLF WAS HARD TO PIN DOWN AT FIRST. COMPETENT AND HIGHLY SKILLED AT HER CRAFT, KIDMAN DID JUSTICE TO THE CHARACTER.

BUT HOW PLAUSIBLE WILL HER INTERPRETATION BE OF THE WRITER? ESPECIALLY, AT THIS TIME, WHEN SHE WAS AT A SERIOUSLY DISTURBED PERIOD OF HER LIFE.

THAT’S THE QUESTION?  BUT HER SOFT PORTRAYL OF THE WRITER CAME INTO PLAY AND SAVED THE DAY.

WHETHER HER PERFORMANCE WILL BE NOTED OR EVEN COMMENTED ON BY WOOLF’S NIECE, ANGELICA GRANT, IS ANOTHER MATTER. GRANT, OF COURSE, WOULD BE THE IDEAL CRITIC.


MALIBU BOARD, HAPPY BIRTHDAY …

THE MALIBU BOARD HAS BEEN IN AUSTRALIA FOR NEARLY 66 YEARS AND BOY, IT HAS TRANSFORMED OUR WAY OF LIFE. SUN, SAND, SURF AND THE MALIBU HAS BEEN THE CREDO AND CULTURE OF THE BEACH. COMING. – FM.

SHE HAS INTRODUCED SEVERAL OF WOOLF’S NOVELS, REISSUED FROM THE EARLY 1990s AND UNEARTHED A LITANY OF FRESH REVELATIONS ABOUT THE AUTHOR AND HER WRITING.

GRANT TOUCHED ON WOOLF’S BOUTS OF MENTAL INSTABILITY, POINTING OUT THAT IN 1904 SHE HAD TRIED TO KILL HERSELF BY JUMPING FROM AN OPEN WINDOW.

WHICH IS PRECISELY HOW SEPTIMUS, IN THE BOOK MRS DALLOWAY, ENDED HIS TORTURED LIFE.

WOOLF WAS A LITHE AND ATTRACTIVE YOUNG WOMAN – IT WAS ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE FOR A MAN NOT TO FALL IN LOVE – BUT HER FACIAL FEATURES WERE BEING SLOWLY ERODED BY HER CONTINUING STRUGGLE WITH DEPRESSION.

MRS DALLOWAY IS SET ON A SINGLE DAY, WEDNESDAY JUNE 13, IN 1923.

AS A WRITER COME PHILOSPHER, WOOLF WAS FASCINATED WITH TIME   BOTH AS SEQUENCE OF MOMENTS AND IN TERM OF YEARS AND CENTURIES.

THE FILM IS ALSO ‘PREOCCUPIED’ WITH TIME. MRS DALLOWAY JUMP-CUTS THROUGH DIFFERENT PERIODS OF THE 20TH CENTURY.

THE FILM TELLS THE STORY OF A GROUP OF CONTEMPORARY CHARACTERS, ALL OF WHOM ARE CONNECTED ONLY BY A PARALLEL IN THEIR PERSONAL LIVES AND STRUGGLING WITH “THE CONFLICTING CLAIMS OF LOVE AND INHERITANCE, HOPE AND DESPAIR”.

IN 1923, WOOLF (KIDMAN) IS PENNING THE NOVEL, MRS DALLOWAY, HAVING JUST EMERGED FROM ONE OF HER LONGEST AND DEEPEST PERIODS ON DEPRESSION; BUT IS STILL GRAPPLING WITH THOUGHTS OF SUICIDE.


THE GREAT AUSSIE FIRSTS …
IN 1819, ROBERT CAMPBELL FOUND THE FIRST SAVINGS BANK IN AUSTRALIA, WITH BARRON FIELD. CAMPBELL ALSO A MEMBER OF THE FIRST LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL FROM 1825 TO 1842; LATER IT IS THE NSW SAVINGS BANK … REG SAUNDERS WAS THE FIRST AUSSIE ABORIGINE TO BE COMMISSIONED IN THE AUSTRALIAN ARMED SERVICES DURING WARTIME.

THE FILM JUMPS TO LOS ANGELES IN 1949. LAURA BROWN, A PREGNANT HOUSEWIFE (JULIANNE MOORE), IS ENDEAVOURING TO RISE ABOVE A STIFLING MARRIAGE, IS BUSY PLANNING A PARTY FOR HER HUSBAND.

THE TIME-CLOCK JUMPS YET AGAIN, TO THE LATE 1990s.

CLARISSA VAUGH (MERYL STREEP), A MODERN NEW YORKER, IS PREPARING FOR WHAT WILL BE A FAREWELL PARTY FOR HER FORMER LOVER AND FRIEND, RICHARD, A FAMOUS AUTHOR, WHO IS DYING OF AIDS.

AS TRAGIC AND TERRIFYING AS EVENTS WERE IN HER ADOLESCENCE, WOOLF SUFFERED FROM MENTAL ILLNESS FOR MOST OF HER LIFE.

HEARING VOICES AND SUFFERING FROM PROTRACTED AND OFTEN VIOLENT NEVEVOUS BREAKDOWNS, SHE BELIEVED SHE WAS ON THE THRESHOLD OF MADNESS; SHE REPEATEDLY TRIED TO DROWN HERSELF.

HOWEVER, SHE EVENTUALLY SUCCEEDED IN MARCH 1941, IN A RIVER NOT FAR FROM THE FAMILY HOME. IN HER LAST LETTER TO HUSBAND LEONARD, ON THE DAY SHE DIED, VIRGINIA WROTE: “IT IS THIS MADNESS, NOTHING ANYONE SAYS CAN PERSUADE ME”.

CAST:
MERYL STREEP, JULIANNE MOORE AND NICOLE KIDMAN. SOME SUPPORTING ROLES: ED HARRIS, JOHN C. REILLY, STEPHEN DILLANE, JEFF DANIELS, MIRANDA RICHARDSON AND TONI COLLETTE. DIRECTOR: STEPHEN DALDRY. SCREENPLAY: DAVID HARE.

Vale: Rob E.G, a polished standout, dies

AS AN ENTERTAINER, ROB E.G’s IMPRIMATUR WAS IMPRESSIVE.

He was one of the biggest stars in Australia as the 1960s dawned. As Rob E.G (Robert Porter), his imprimatur was impressive – as an artist, producer, label boss, manager and songwriter. As a singer, he was one artist that I’ve never got tired of his voice. He left us with 55 days At Peking, Eagle Rock, Come Back Against, Whiplash, Railroadin’ and a couple of dozen or so more. He was also a television performer. Rob E.G died in December at age 79.

A New Year Story! Arise George Warnecke and your ‘magic formula’

THE FIRST WOMENS WEEKLY’S ROLLED OFF THE PRESS.

HERE IS WARNECKE’S SOLUTION FOR SETTING UP A WOMENS’ ESTABLISHMENT!

FRANK MORRIS

When the first issue of the Australian Women’s Weekly was printed as a tabloid and came off the presses in early June in 1933, eighty-one years ago, it not only had a marked impact on reading habits but it gave the lives of Australian women new perspectives.

George Warnecke, the Weekly’s co-creator and first editor, designed the magazine to have an Aussie outlook and appeal to every stratum of society: from the outback to the well-heeled and industrial suburbs of the land.

Warnecke later described this “simple charter” as the “magic formula.” That’s why the Weekly was an immediate success.

But believe it or not, he wasn’t the one who came up with the idea to produce a women’s newspaper. It was his wife, the Irish opera singer Nora Hill. Right from the start, Nora was convinced that Australian women needed a newspaper.

Nan Musgrove, who was a feature writer on the Weekly, wrote in 1954 that “after long discussions with Nora” he and Nora hunted the bookshops, spied on how women were dressed, before they finally settled on what they wanted.

From these humble forays in the marketplace of a struggling Australia, the “magic formula” for a women’s “newspaper” gradually took shape.

It was early winter on June 8, 1933, when an old Hoe press, set up in MacDonnell House in Pitt Street, Sydney, began printing the magazine-come-newspaper that would became an institution – the Australian Women’s Weekly.


2021: CRANE RESEARCH GET TOP MARKS …
CLIFF CRANE, WHO SPENT 25 YEARS OF HIS LIFE TRYING TO FIND THE IDENTITY OF A.B. ‘BANJO’ PATERSON’S THE MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER, WILL BE OFFICALLY RECOGNISED IN A NEW BIOGRAPHY THE “FAMOUS BUSH POET”. IN THE ARTICLE I WROTE ABOUT THE FINDINGS, I QUOTED CRANE AS SAYING, “IT WASN’T ACTUALLY A MAN. IT WAS AN 11-YEAR-OLD BOY CALLED EDWARD HALL. CONTINUED BELOW:

The Depression had been grinding away for three years and there was little relief in sight for Australians.

Like the rest of the world, our land was in crisis; unemployment had reached 30 per cent, our overseas markets had dried up; our prices for wool, coal and wheat hit rock bottom.

But the birth and charm of the Weekly radiated confidence for a Depression-wracked publishing industry.

“Success was a very important impetus to those of us who were in the business then,” wrote Frank S. Greenop, author of the seminal The History of Magazine Publishing in Australia in 1965. “The economic problems were in some cases greater that the resources of management could bear.

”The bookstalls were filled with American and English magazines selling cheaply. them. We lived through it … but there was a danger that we couldn’t see the wood for the trees.”

It was the opinion of Greenop that the Depression was as much psychological as it was economic. “I think the first breakthrough came when Frank Packer, later Sir Frank, launched the Weekly,” said Greenop.

<< NEXT: George Warnecke!


2021: CRANE RESEARCH GET TOP MARKS …
NOW, HIS RESEARCH HAS PAID OFF. “I AM ONE OF TWO PEOPLE SELECTED TO HAVE MATERIAL INCLUDED IN THE REPRINT OF THE 1965 BIOGRAPHY, ‘A.B. PATERSON’ BY CLEMENT SEMMLER”, SAID CRANE. IT TOOK PATERSON’S MIND TO WRITE THE MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER. “WHEN IT WAS PUBLISHED IN 1895, NOT ONLY WAS IT A MILESTONE FOR PATERSON BUT IT BECAME, AUSTRALIA’S FIRST BEST SELLER”, SAID FRANK MORRIS IN A HISTORY OF THE BOOK.

<< FROM THE HISTORY OF THE BOOK. MSS; FRANK MORRIS.

Elvis Presley exhibition coming to regional Victorian city in March 2022

THE KING IS ‘ALIVE’ AND ARRIVING AT BENDIGO, AUSTRALIA!

FRANK MORRIS

“STILL THE KING AND THE KING IS DEAD. LONG LIVE THE KING.”
OVER THE RADIO IN 1977, WE HEARD THAT ELVIS PRESLEY HAD PASSED AWAY AT GRACELAND, HIS FAMOUS MEMPHIS HOME.

EVEN A TWO-YEAR STINT IN THE ARMY COULD NOT DENT HIS PHENOMENAL POPULARITY. HE LEFT US WITH WHOLE A LOT OF MEMORIES.

Let the memories lives on …

The Director of Bendigo Art said, major exhibition celebrating the life and legacy of the 'King of Rock 'n' Roll' Elvis Presley is coming exclusively to Australia.

This exhibition was part of an international series which will feature world icons, according to the director.

The exhibition, Elvis: Direct from Graceland, will travel from Memphis, Tennessee and arrive in Bendigo, regional Victoria, in March.

The Bendigo Art Gallery will house the exhibition featuring 300 artefacts owned by Elvis, including his military uniforms, a 1976 Red Bicentennial Custom Harley Davidson and some of his famous jumpsuits.

The music icon's personal items, such as baby clothes from his daughter Lisa Marie, his first job application and his first-grade crayon box he took to school, will be part of the exhibition.

Elvis' wedding tuxedo and his wife Priscilla's wedding dress will also be on display, along with a stage costume from the acclaimed TV performance known as the 68 Comeback Special, and garments from his eclectic home wardrobe.

ELVIS AUSTRALIA TICKETS NOW ON SALE!


THE GREAT AUSSIE FIRSTS …
NATIVE-BORN HORSES WERE THE CREDITED AS THE FIRST EXPORT CARGO OF LIVESTOCK IN AUSTRALIA. THEY WERE SHIPPED TO INDIA FOR USE BY THE BRITISH  ARMY. THE HORSES, KNOWN AS WALERS -- A TERM COINED IN CALCUTTA IN 1846, WHICH ORIGINALLY MEANT ‘NEW SOUTH WALER’. THEY WERE SELECTED BECAUSE OF THE THEIR STAMINA, PATIENCE AND COURAGE. – FM.

UTOPIA DOWN-UNDER …

YOU ARE IMMUNE TO ITS STING!

THE TINY CLOWN FISH ENJOYS THE SECURITY TO BE FOUND IN A CLUSTER OF NIPPLE ANEMONE IN THE WATERS AROUND THE SOLITARY ISLANDS, OFF COFFS HARBOUR; OR IN OTHER REGIONS THROUGHOUT THE NATION. THE FISH LIVES WITHIN THE POINSONOUS TENTACLES OF THE  ANEMONE AND IS, UNLIKE OTHER SEA CREATURES, IMMUNE TO ITS STING. – FM.

MAY YOUR NEW YEAR BE THE WAY YOU IMAGINE!

YOUR NEXT GRAND YEARS WILL APPEAR ON JANUARY 28, 2022.

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 13 January 22

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