Tuesday, 27 October 2009


Took an early morning flight through an absolutely packed Melbourne airport. I’m hanging in there with all these flights but it’s a shame I lost my lounge access card as the peace and quiet (and the free snacks) of a lounge do hope ease the pain of travel. Once on board, I pulled my coat down over my head and slept the whole way there. I have never been to Tasmania before and from the air it is stunning. I didn’t connect with the person picking me up at first until I heard someone on the phone saying ‘yes, but I don’t know what he flipping-well looks like’ – that had to be for me. It was. John the owner of the one and only Hobart arthouse cinema had found me… He’s another one of these extremely hard-working folk who keep these wonderful cinemas going. He has even dug down into the ground under his cinema to create extra screens… He and his partner Jan seem to work their socks off to keep the cinema going and I hope the locals realise what a treasure it is. Apparently they do as some make long journeys to visit – and some, apparently, have even moved to Hobart from elsewhere in Tasmania just to be near the cinema. Hobart is a rather lovely place too – only 500,000 folk and a real sense of the past which has managed not to have been knocked down and replaced by bland skyscrapers. The evening was great – a complete sell out and, for the very first time, a standing ovation! Now I can only remember standing to applaud a film once (and that was quite recently in Prague for a great film called Anvil) and frankly I didn’t know where to look when the good folk of Hobart offered me the same honour… As always, the proof will be in the pudding and how long it justifies John keeping it in the cinema. It would be great to have a good run… The local radio and press really liked the film so that will help.

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