Monday, April 06, 2009

ACMI Focus on Wendy Hughes

The following is courtesty of ACMI:


Focus on Wendy Hughes
Thursday 16 April - Sunday 26 April

Individual sessions: Full $13, Concession $10 > 6 Session Package: Full $60, Concession $48 / Box Office: 8663 2583

Celebrate the career of a major Australian actor, whose style is defined by her classic poise and cool eroticism.

Thu 16 Apr 7.30pm, Sun 26 Apr 5.30pm
My First Wife PG
Paul Cox, 95 mins, Australia, 1984, 35mm.
Based in parts on the breakdown of his own marriage, director and co-writer Paul Cox charts the emotional lives of a group of middle class Melburnians dealing with the aftermath of a divorce. This was the third collaboration between Wendy Hughes and Paul Cox and gained the actress her fourth (at the time) AFI award nomination for Best Actress. Co-screenwriter Bob Ellis reverses the usual gender roles by having Hughes’ character as the spouse having an affair and wanting out of her marriage while her husband (played by John Hargreaves) quietly falls apart. Wendy Hughes and Paul Cox will be in attendance for the first screening.

Fri 17 Apr 7.30pm, Sat 25 Apr 3pm
Petersen R18+
Tim Burstall, 107 mins, Australia, 1974, 35mm.
Jack Thompson stars as Tony Petersen, a former football hero who goes to university in pursuit of an arts degree and becomes the object of lust for Dr Patricia Kent (Wendy Hughes), an English tutor who also happens to be the wife of one of Petersen’s lecturers. Critics were quick to dismiss Petersen as another ocker sex comedy in the vein of director Tim Burstall’s other features Stork and Alvin Purple, but David Williamson’s script was more interested in examining the chasm between Petersen’s home life and the radicalised university campus life he finds himself traversing in.

Sat 18 Apr 3pm
Wendy Hughes & Friends unclassified 15+
Join Wendy Hughes and a few of her closest acting and directing buddies as they discuss some of her many career highlights and view clips of some of her most memorable moments. Tickets available from the ACMI Box Office on the day. Free!

Sat 18 Apr 5.30pm, Fri 24 Apr 7.30pm
An Indecent Obsession M
Lex Marinos, 100 mins, Australia, 1984, Digital Betacam.
Based on Colleen McCullough’s steamy best-selling novel, An Indecent Obsession stars Wendy Hughes as Sister Honour Langtry, a nurse who runs the psychiatric ward of a military hospital on a pacific island during World War II. The indecent obsession of the title occurs when a seemingly ‘normal’ and handsome patient (played by Gary Sweet) arrives, stirring all sorts of repressed and unhealthy desires in Sister Langtry and her unstable wards.

Sat 18 Apr 8pm, Fri 24 Apr 9.45pm
Shadows of the Peacock M
Phillip Noyce, 92 mins, Australia, 1987, 35mm, English with German subtitles.
Following the death of her father and the realisation of her husband’s infidelity, Maria McEvoy (Wendy Hughes) abandons her middle class life, including her three children (a teenaged Claudia Karvan among them) and takes off to Thailand. When she falls under the spell of Raka (John Lone, M. Butterfly), an exiled traditional Balinese dancer she must choose between him and her former existence. Directed by Phillip Noyce, Shadows of the Peacock was one of Hughes’ last major Australian films before she embarked on a career in the USA.

Sun 19 Apr 3pm, Mon 20 Apr 7.30pm
The View from Greenhaven PG
Kenn MacRae and Simon MacRae, 99 mins, Australia, 2008,
Wendy Hughes is reunited with Chris Hayward after thirty years in this contemporary tale set in the fictional town of Greenhaven. Dorothy (Hughes) and Dashiell (Hayward) have reached their 40th wedding anniversary but there seems little to celebrate; Dashiell has settled into a dull routine which is slowly driving his wife to distraction. When their daughter surprises them with a mystery train trip, the journey brings more surprises than just their destination. Wendy and co-writer/codirector Simon McCrae will be present for the first screening.

Sun 19 Apr 5.30pm, Tue 21 Apr 7.30pm
Newsfront PG
Phillip Noyce, 110 mins, Australia, 1978, 35mm.
Set in a post World War II Australia and seamlessly integrating archival footage with newly filmed material, Newsfront is a spirited look at the rivalry between two newsreel companies. Bob Ellis’ screenplay incorporates characters loosely based on leading figures in the Australian film industry while focusing on significant events such as the referendum to ban the Communist party, the Maitland floods and the 1956 Olympic Games. Wendy Hughes plays the enigmatic girlfriend of a news cameraman who is trapped between the macho world of news reportage and the greater confines of 1950s Australia.

Sun 19 Apr 8pm, Sat 25 Apr 8pm
Lonely Hearts
Paul Cox, 95 mins, Australia, 1982, 35mm.
In this gentle suburban romance, Wendy Hughes stars as a timid bank clerk who meets and falls in love with a piano tuner (Norman Kaye) twenty years her senior who has a tendency to shoplift. Director Paul Cox had a major success with this second collaboration with Hughes who plays down her beauty to portray a dowdy and sexually inhibited woman. Her against-type performance gained her an AFI nomination for Best Actress in a Lead Role.

Thu 23 Apr 7.30pm, Sun 26 Apr 8pm
Careful He Might Hear You PG
Carl Schultz, 110 mins, Australia, 1983, 35mm.
Set during the Great Depression, this adaptation of Sumner Locke Elliott’s classic novel chronicles the emotional custody battle over a six-year-old boy. Wendy Hughes won an AFI Award for her performance as the boy’s wealthy anglophile aunt and it is this role more than any other that personifies Hughes’ screen presence: elegant, removed and coolly erotic. A scene in which her sexually repressed character falls emotionally apart during a thunderstorm taking solace in the arms of her six-year-old charge is one of the film’s – and Hughes’ – most memorable moments.

Sat 25 Apr 5.30pm
Warm Nights on a Slow Moving Train M
Bob Ellis, 86 mins, Australia, 1987, 35mm.
Wendy Hughes flexes more than her acting muscles as a teacher by day and a tart-with-a -heart by night in this underrated romantic thriller co-written and directed by Bob Ellis. When an art teacher struggles to support her wheelchair-confined brother on her regular salary, she decides to make ends meet by travelling between Melbourne and Sydney via the overnight train, working her way through some of the greats of the Australian acting fraternity. She falls for the enigmatic, strong and charming Colin Friels who has an agenda of his own.

Sat 25 Apr 10pm
Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 6, Episode 19 M
Robert Wiemer, 59 mins, USA, 1993, DV Cam.
Wendy Hughes enters the cultish world of the Star Trek franchise as Lieutenant Commander Nella Daren, the new head of the Star Fleet’s science department and potential love interest for the unflappable Captain Picard (Patrick Steward). Hughes adds to her gallery of classy, intelligent women with this one-off role, easily negotiating the world of sci-fi and turning this fleeting guest appearance into a memorable episode for Trekkies and Hughes fans alike.

Sun 26 Apr 3pm
Boundaries of the Heart PG
Lex Marinos, 97 mins, Australia, 1998, 35mm.
Stella (Wendy Hughes) and her publican father Billy (Norman Kaye) live in the sparsely populated town of Olwyn’s Boundary (pop. 49). In what has become an annual event, itinerant rodeo rider Andy (John Hargreaves) makes his feelings known for Stella with his latest proposal of marriage, but a moment of infidelity turns Andy’s affections in another direction. Directed by actor Lex Marinos, this celebration of Australiania was inspired by Robert Altman’s Fool for Love.


Brad said...

There are some great films here. But Wendy Hughes seems like a strange person to have a Focus on don't you reckon? Newsfront vs. Star Trek: The Next Generation?

Paul Martin said...

Quite honestly, Brad, I'm not acquainted with Wendy Hughes. She's in Paul Cox's Salvation, which is about to get released. I saw it last year and really didn't like it at all. But I'm interested to see some of these films.

I remember liking Petersen when it was first released and would like to see how it has travelled. It seemed very gritty at the time; there's a rape scene that was controversial. I've never seen Newsfront on the big screen, so that should be a blast.