Russell Dykstra

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Soft Fruit Review


Weak
The epitome of what's wrong with Australian cinema today. Pity the poor mother who is not only dying of cancer, she has to contend with a dunderhead husband, three grating and obese daughters, and a visiting son, fresh out of prison. Obsessed with Jackie Kennedy, the whole story reeks of falsehood, yet another dysfunctional oddball family living down under, waiting for someone to die so the movie can end. Bizarre without any sense of subversion, despite a few moments that make you open your eyes more than halfway.

Garage Days Review


Very Good
To borrow a phrase from Tolstoy, all pop music success stories are the same; every pop music failure is different. That's the genius behind VH1's Behind the Music (Why spend time listening to a good album when you can spend an hour learning about Styx's hubris?), and it also explains why most movies about the glamour of hitting it big in rock and roll are usually so disappointing. Stuck with an obvious story, the results are either campy (Help!), earnestly boilerplate (Almost Famous), or pretentiously awful (The Doors). But director Alex Proyas has the right idea with Garage Days, his likeable comedy about a hopelessly mediocre Australian rock band that can't get a decent gig.

Still, every rock movie good or bad needs a young kid with good looks and ambition, which here takes the form of Freddy (Kick Gurry), a sandy-haired singer with a vendetta against gambling machines and tendency to lose to his girlfriend's vibrator in the sexual sweepstakes. Worse, the girlfriend happens to be Tanya (Pia Miranda), the bassist in his go-nowhere Sydney band, which is filled with neurotic lead guitarist Joe (Brett Stiller) and drummer Lucy (Chris Sadrinna), an amateur pharmacist whose concoctions tend to produce more vomit than highs. Add to this Bruno (Russell Dykstra), a manager with no schmoozing skills to speak of, and Proyas winds up having great fun bouncing his characters against one another, revealing both their ineptitude and their charms.

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Russell Dykstra Movies

Garage Days Movie Review

Garage Days Movie Review

To borrow a phrase from Tolstoy, all pop music success stories are the same; every...

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