An Insider Review of ‘Australia’

Welcome to the first in what may become a series of posts written in the style of a critical review.


Flop, Flop, Flop (The Nation, Not The Movie.  Although…)

This latest version of Australia hit our screens in 2013 and has really only delivered abject disappointment for the majority of serious viewers since that time.  While it contains some elements of high drama, these moments have seemed hollow and, dare I say, fake.  One can only surmise that shady dealings by the political and media ‘movers and shakers’ at executive levels of the studio are directing a less than stellar production department.

Hence, this iteration of Australia has been nothing short of the proverbial flop, and a cinematic failure of the highest order.
Nevertheless, and although it pains your reviewer greatly to relive the agony of the experience, an Insider Review requires analysis…

Deviating quite significiantly from the previous chapter, Australia almost immediately descends into farce when the main cast graces the screen with their presence.  Strong leading men were called for by the studio, and what appears instead are Anthony Abbott and Mal ‘Truffles’ Turnbull; frankly, a more hollow and over-hyped pair would be hard to even locate, let alone coerce into ‘starring’ in this lemon.  The fact that the two rarely share the screen simultaneously is a blessing that only just maintains a degree of almost-unbearable watchability.

Set in the present, this episode explores the wide-ranging and overtly concerted efforts of the Conservative Gang to tear down everything established in the previous production by the Used-To-Be’s, who we know were trying to pretend to do good things while dramatically and painfully caving-in to their subconscious desire to just give up being anything decent and become more like the Conservative Gang.

While this episode seemingly tries to be the quality drama that was promised in early drafts, it rapidly becomes little more than a failed black comedy.

Set on a remote continent known as Australia, hence the title, on a dying planet ironically sodomised-to-death by its most social and (allegedly) intelligent inhabitants, Australia reveals itself to be a tale of liars and crooks intent on plundering their particular cubicle of civilisation for all it is worth and sailing off to luxurious retirement in either Central America or the Carribean, and engorging the Scrooge-vaults with galleon-loads of cash along the way.  Of course, there is nothing new in this story, and the only surprising component of the whole affair is that the old-school Egalitarian Masses and the more fluid, ‘sensible’, members of the Aspirational Masses haven’t yet banded together to storm the Bastille, as it were, and wheel out the dusty old guillotines.

The episode opens with a raft of promises delivered by the seemingly-unelectable Abbott, and promoted by the screaming Media Gang, who moan and wail about the horrendous state of all things because of the woeful Used-To-Be’s and how badly this episode needs Abbott to captain the ship.  Of course, most of the gullible Aspirational Masses, all the millions of them, are swayed by this (almost inexplicably), and Abbott sweeps to power.  Within days, predictably, the promises that brought him the top job begin to be broken with apparent glee by the Conservative Gang, who have morphed from smiling suits into a depression-era razor gang.

Nothing good at all happens for 1 year and 362 days, save for some bizarre attempts at comedy which provide some moderate, but baffling, amusement.  Abbott eating a raw onion complete with its skin for the local media in an apparent case of mental implosion did see the screening audience break out in spontaneous raucous laughter.  This was possibly the only ‘highlight’ of the entire first half of the episode.  At the end of this mini-era, ‘Truffles’ Turnbull ascends to the captaincy, finally, maybe, delivering something approaching good viewing, after an earlier abortive effort, and offers some hope that the episode may actually be for some worthwhile reason.

While the general sense of schadenfreude is high at this point, seeing Abbott pulled back into a supporting role, there is a nagging feeling that things might not actually get any better at all.  These feelings are subsequently borne out in reality in the scenes that follow, and the episode plunges viewers to new depths as ‘Truffles’ seems to forget his lines and appears to have forgotten why he is there on the silver screen at all.

The episode overflows with horrendous tales of corruption, rorting, abuse- and murder-by-proxy, most of the latter being a continuation of Used-To-Be policy in illegal offshore detention centres, better understood as concentration camps, while in-cubicle less-fortunates add a fresh element of torture-porn for the protagonists.  And, even though the Conservative Gang have got it pretty good, having the keys to the cubicle treasury continually proves a far too easy and tempting honey-trap for their less discreet ‘honourable members’.  Again, many viewers will be stunned that blades aren’t being sharpened and old jails re-commissioned.

As alluded to earlier, there is some hope for redemption offered up as the conclusion begins to take shape, with ‘Truffles’ holding the reigns.  However, and despite his self-proclaimed ‘progressive’ character, he is utterly beholden to factional elements of the Conservative Gang Old Guard bereft of faces or names (much akin to the Opus Dei of the Catholic Church of Satan, or similar).  Consequently, the cubicle known as Australia continues its downward spiral and sharper divisions arise between the various Masses. Sovereign wealth, moral currency, global responsibility, and human decency are all auctioned to the highest bidder in rigged reverse auctions, mostly subsidised by the lower socio-economic echelons of the aforementioned various Masses.

There is a last-ditch attempt at drama with a good outcome when ‘Truffles’ faces his first non-coup popular vote in the top job, and his Conservative Gang is aided once again by the screeching Media Gang.  In the face of being wiped out in the vote, opinion polls are rigged and scenarios manufactured; the Media Gang pulls out all the dirty tricks, including the old jack-hammer repeat-repeat-repeat-until-it’s-true trick.  Bizarrely, these schemes work, again, and the Conservative Gang scrapes through the vote, on substantially reduced numbers, and somehow is still running the cubicle into the ground as the conclusion bears down on us all.

Overall, Australia is a nonsensical piece that simply doesn’t work. It stumbles and trips its way through the whole production, in a manner that shouldn’t be at all possible, let alone functional, yet the major cast members seem supremely satisfied with their performance, even though in a just world they would be obliterated from seats of power and jailed, bankrupted, hanged, or shot.  It’s almost as if they ‘know’ that they will be protected from the wrath of The Academy by some higher power.  Ludicrous.

Australia fails to live up to the expectations of the wider cinematic community, fails to deliver any evidence of its meaningful existence, and fails to advance anything but return on investment for the Scrooges.  It is a bizarre tale of unreal proportions. What occurs inside it could not actually happen in the real world.  Surely.  But here it is, on the big screen, a grand waste of time for most viewers.  True believers in extracting wealth-for-self at any cost may be the only audience that this episode finds favour with – in fact, they will probably enjoy it immensely, and good luck to them for that.  For the rest of us, though, Australia is an embarrassment and is exceptionally difficult to digest.

We are left wondering, “why?, how?, what the actual fuck is going on here?”.  And in the end most will wish they’d spent their time elsewhere, doing something worthwhile, like impaling their own eyeballs with toothpicks, or concocting plans for a violent revolt.

Australia is the worst output of its kind in almost a hundred years and I can only give it half of one star out of five possible stars, and even this paltry score is a stretch.

Wick Burner’s Insider Review Rating: review-stars-half-of-1-stars

I Don’t Wanna Play Anymore


Wick Burner Extracting Ancient Poetry Texts From His Strike-Proof Deep Underground ‘Facility’

The following attempted poetry, dredged up from the archives, pasted here for your reading boredom pleasure.

Said pasting inspired by significant mood-match with the present epoch, as well as recent insipid poetic escapades about Mickey D’s french fries by Kanye the messiah.

What a fucking tosser…


I Don’t Wanna Play Anymore

This game we call The World

I don’t wanna play anymore


I don’t wanna play

When thieves and liars rule


I don’t wanna play

When progress is hated


I don’t wanna play

When killers are heroes


I don’t wanna play

When life means nothing


I don’t wanna play

When kids are cannon fodder


I don’t wanna play anymore


The rules are pretty simple

But almost nobody abides them
And I don’t wanna play no more


© sometime last century, Wick Burner’s Early-Era Poetic Enterprises Incorporated

Refugee Trauma: Australia’s Remorseless Detention Camp on Nauru

The shame of the nation; Australia endorses, facilitates, and bank-rolls the mistreatment and death of legitimate asylum seekers, and then blames them and refugee advocates when these crimes are exposed.

Reblogged, with thanks, from Counter Information.

Please click through to the original article for the full read…

Counter Information

Leaked Incident Reports

Global Research, August 10, 2016

“Do I have to kill myself to go to Australia?” — Asylum seeker, Nauru, March 2, 2015

Human sensibility has been given another sound beating with the leak of 2,116 incident reports from Australia’s remorseless detention camp on Nauru.  The reports total some 8,000 pages covering the period of May 2013 to October 2015 and were published by the Guardian on Wednesday.[1]

The newspaper notes that children are heavily, in fact “vastly over-represented in the reports” featuring in a total of 1,086 incidents despite making up only 18 percent of the detained population.  Even the bureaucratic “ratings” of harm and risk given by the private security firm Wilson’s can’t varnish the brutalities.

Interspersed in this horror story are the features that are meant to make such detention conditions modest. Such is the cynicism of refugee and asylum seeker management –…

View original post 762 more words

Things Aren’t That Bad… Yet

MAJOR DISCLAIMER: Obviously, the following message of hate cannot be and is not endorsed by me or anyone I know.


Take-Home Message For The Kids At The Mall

Just some random and slightly alarming graffiti in a place near where I live.

Today’s take-home: Do Not Kill Cops


Wick Burner

A Calming Musical Prelude To Something #1

PIL logo

Public Image Limited

A prelude to something… made of music-type sounds and moving-type images.

Everyone knows the Sex Pistols, but here’s some Public Image Limited, John (Johnny Rotten) Lydon’s post-Pistols’ self-destruction musical endeavour.  The band name comes from Lydon’s assessment of deceased Pistols band-mate Sid Vicious, “Poor Sid. The only way he could live up to what he wanted everyone to believe about him was to die. That was tragic, but more for Sid than anyone else. He really bought his public image.

In my humble opinion, PiL was Lydon’s songwriting and musical abilities at their best, well-supported by a changeable troupe of excellent musicians.

Do yourself a favour, and press ‘Play’ on these babies:

Public Image‘ (1978):  lots of throwback to his recent (at the time) punk-rock journey, all on a heavy ‘dub’ base, with lashings of almost early-80’s new-wave guitar styling.  Here you can see and hear that maybe something good has come of the Pistols’ pyre.

Death Disco‘ (1979):  this is PiL and Lydon carving their output into something later called ‘post-punk’.  It’s an over-used genre descriptor, but this song is, I think, what most true post-punk and a lot of electronica music leans on – it’s drawing on so many new and under-appreciated (at the time) musical styles that slot in seamlessly to build up a genuinely hypnotic aspect.  It’s a watermark in the transition from the messy and anarchic to the skillfully arranged and crafted.  And it’s dark and it says something, to someone.

This Is Not A Love Song‘ (1983):  more subdued punk-rock affectations, with Lydon really holding on to that unmistakable Sex Pistols vocal style, but now much more evolved and polished – overlaid with unmissable synthesizer and sounding ‘poppy’, complete with lyrics taunting the punk fan-base: “I’m crossing over”…  PiL copped a battering from fans and press for ‘selling out’…  Somehow I don’t think Lydon cared.

Rise‘ (1986):  this is probably PiL’s best-known track, heaps of airplay, and it was one of a fleet of ‘uplifting’ and anthemic anti-apartheid tracks coming out of the UK at that time.  This track contains two of the most memorable lines in modern music, lifted and used elsewhere many times since: “the written word is a lie”, and the repeat-to-fade “anger is an energy”.  Lydon is clearly still keen to provoke questioning of the accepted reality, and not leave us wondering where he has come from or who he is, only now with a very healthy musical pedigree of his own that is now cemented and still influential today.

Anyway, that was a little musical tour through what was born after the infamous Sex Pistols self-immolated.  For no other reason than because I wanted to run a little musical tour tonight…


Crank it.  No, really, I mean it.  Enjoy!

Wick Burner


NOTE: I’ve had a report or two from the fair continent of North America of non-visibility/failure to load for the video embeds.  It may be a regional access control thing, or a ‘vevo’ thing, or both, or something different.  Apologies if this has happened to you.  Gosh-darn technomology…



‘I Just Don’t Get It…’

Sarcastically pondering the ways of the world on Twitter…:



Enjoy the long weekend, all you people who live in places that formally celebrate the Western observance of the Roman crucifixion of the King of the Jews.  Allegedly.


Wick Burner