Red Koi Reviews

See what I've seen, hear what I've heard

Archive for September, 2006

“The Tempest” by William Shakespeare

Posted by redkoireviews on 17/09/2006

The tempestEarlier this year my Partner and I saw Bell Shakespeare perform “Romeo and Juliet“, and last night we saw “The Tempest“. I’ve never seen “The Tempest” before and found it my new favourite Shakespeare. The play is a tale of power, providence and magic.

Prospero is the bookish Duke of Milan, overthrown by his own brother and cast to sea, where by luck Prospero and his daughter land on an island with only a servant Caliban and spirit Ariel as company. When Prospero’s brother and his fellow conspirators sail close by, Prospero conjures a fearsome storm to deliver his foes to the island, where he seeks his revenge. In the process, love blooms and crooks conspire. In the end Prospero recognises that ‘The rarer action is in virtue than in vengeance’ and forgives his foes. The full synopsis of the Bell production is here.

John Bell played Prospero, with all the presence and power that the character needs. I found some of the monologues very moving, able to build emotion in the audience with ease. In today’s world of email, sms and blogs, the art of oratory has been largely lost. Our gutless politicians lack the vision to deliver anything of substance. Read the rest of this entry »


Posted in 4 Stars, Reviews, Theatre | 1 Comment »

Thank you for smoking (The movie)

Posted by redkoireviews on 16/09/2006

Thank you for smokingThank you for smoking” is based on a novel of the same name, and it follows tobacco spin man Nick Taylor as he tries to ‘filter the truth’. I work for a non-profit environment group and we see all kinds of spin designed to make companies look more responsible than they are. Nothing in this movie surprised me much, but it was funny.

Having said that, I’ve met the PR people from tobacco, alcohol and coal companies and they are not as cunning and machiavellian as Nick and his friends in the M.O.D squad (Merchants of Death). Some have more flexible ethics than others, but like Nick, they are all paid to talk, because that’s what they’re good at. The PR industry has already moved beyond characters like Nick – they know he’s bad for their own image. The industry knows the best PR is PR that doesn’t get recognised as PR. The greying out of truth is getting worse, and although the industry would like to think otherwise, public trust in private institutions corrodes just a little more for every ambiguous media release and sound bite.

If you like satire, you’ll like this movie. If you’re expecting a hard hitting expose, this is not it. So much dirty laundry of the tobacco industry has been aired this movie doesn’t even try to add anything more. See Rotten Tomatoes for a second opinion. Entertainment for the cynical.

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

Posted in 3 Stars, Movies, Reviews | 1 Comment »

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