Tom Stade (Best of the Edinburgh Fest)


I feel charmed but slightly depersonalised when I ask Tom Stade − one third of the Best of the Edinburgh Fest show playing at the Melbourne Comedy Festival, and acclaimed Canadian comic − to tell me about his show. “Well Beat − I hope you don’t mind me calling you Beat? I feel kinda of close to you guys now. I am the show… you come to see Tom Stade and not a theme. And Tom Stade has many themes, to focus on just one would not be a true celebratory representation of life. Just buckle in and get ready to relate!” He then apologises for speaking in the third person. Since I am being referred to as Beat I can’t really find the heart to complain.


Stade got into comedy the way most seem to − in an extreme moment of clarity and inspiration. “I was elevated out of whatever humdrum existence society had for me before comedy intervened! I was planning to ‘end up’ being an actor until I went down to a comedy club many moons ago and saw a friend who was on, and he pulled some strings and next thing I know I did my first gig and I never looked back.”


This is Stade’s second Melbourne Comedy Festival, and he’ll be playing with two of the UK’s hottest new comics. “My partners in comedy crime are the super comedy talents of Carl Donnelly and Kai Humphries, I’m proud to be one of their wingmen.” Donnelly has been referred to as “A remarkable talent − a relaxed, easygoing anecdotalist with an eye for funny details.” While Kai Humphries’ style is known as “Happy, original and surreal.” When Stade talks about where he’s at, he’s philisophical about his ambitions. “I think I’m hungrier now for success than I was a couple of years ago. After we signed a DVD deal and recorded the Tom Stade Live DVD it lit a fire under me! I try to stay true to the comedy art form, and would always try to be successful in the comedy biz on my own terms − looks like the biz likes my terms!”


What thing, person or idea are you most obsessed with at this time? “That’s easy, first we’ll start with ‘thing’ and that has to be my Kindle Fire HD. ‘Person’? That’s easy the wonderful, challenging, sexy, frustrating, ‘why won’t she just do things my way, yes I’ll listen,’ and smart, the greatest photographer in the world and equal partners in the Stade family business…Trudy Stade! And ‘idea I’m obsessed with at this time’ is why is Scotland the only place if you buy a house you have to bid over the asking price? Messes with my head!”


When I ask what else he gets up to in his spare time apart from being depressed about real estate he replies, “I’ve joined a beginners jogging club and I’m up to 5min walk, 15min jog, 5min walk, cool down. Oh and I enjoy gambling all my money away! There’s a horse track in Melbourne right?” Sure is. He’s coy when I ask if he has any other projects in the works right now, but he is at least super enthusiastic about the festival. “I could’ve of done a lot more [Festivals], it’s not like I wasn’t asked constantly, but sadly I have an awesome family so it was hard to get out there without leaving them behind. But the kids are older now, so look out cause the Stades are a-coming!”


27th March – 20th April, Tue-Sat 7.30pm
Sun 6.30pm

70 minutes

VENUE: RMIT Capitol Theatre


$26 – $34

Published as part of the Beat – Melbourne Comedy Festival Lift Out Guide

Le Joli Mai


Chris Marker fans will be satisfied with this thoughtful film essay, which depicts the ‘first peaceful Spring’ in Paris since the close of the Second World War and ensuing war in Algeria.  Shot simultaneously with the filming of the legendary La Jetée, this prize-winning film has only recently been restored by Marker’s cinematographer and co-director Pierre Lhomme.

Ever the voyeur, Marker spent the spring of 1962 talking to everyday Parisians about, well, how they were doing. He spoke to war heroes and youths, mothers of eight and lifelong workers’ rights campaigners, Algerians and mainland French. At a noticeable two and a half hours, this essay on post post war Paris, with its superb timelapses and establishing shots, peoplescapes and, of course Marker’s endless faces, makes this film well worth watching, though it might try the patience of the uninitiated.

Marker’s minimal interviewing style brings out all sorts of responses in his interviewees, but at each of their hearts is a lack of contentment, a bewilderment towards the world in which they live. This film depicts a moment in time from the people themselves who lived it, creating a remarkable time capsule, but also touching on the more universal anxieties that rest in society.

Le Joli Mai screened as part of the 2013 Melbourne International Film Festival. Click here for all of our reviews from MIFF 2013.

 You can read the original post on Beat here

Good Vibrations

Good Vibrations


Nothing beats a rock’n’roll film – from A Hard Day’s Night to Wayne’s World, films about the music that has shaped us can’t help but get the heart rate up and the sweat pumping. Good Vibrations’ plot is by-the-numbers, but the location itself sets up a rich proposition, where buying records meant risking the streets of Belfast at the height of The Troubles.

Terri Hooley is the charismatic centre of this story about a music-obsessed beatnik who opens a record shop smack bang in the middle of riots and bombs. At first a member of the reggae-obsessed remnants of seventies socialists, everything changes when Hooley discovers punk, and among them The Undertones. Everyone loves stories about a mad bastard, and everyone loves the song Teenage Kicks – anyone who says otherwise has never heard it before or is an arsehole  and you know this film hits the mark when you find yourself fighting back tears the legendary moment when, lifting the stylus and setting it back to the start of the 7” single, John Peel announces on his radio show that the aforementioned song is so wonderful he’s going to play it again.

Good Vibrations is a warm, heartfelt, brutally honest film about a time in the not so recent past when a part of the world was tearing itself apart. It’s got wonderful performances, and just enough artistry in the direction to make this a worthy music biopic.

Good Vibrations screened as part of the 2013 Melbourne International Film Festival. Click here for all of our reviews from MIFF 2013.

Read the original post on Beat here