‘The Hangover III’ ...
Interview with Amanda ...
Awake Is Still ...
JT to tour ...
Gotye urges Communications ...
Ex-Vogue Australia editor ...
Who’d have thought that a rehash of an ’80s prison drama show would be a huge hit in a medium that is already saturated with remakes and pastiche? But that’s just what drama Wentworth – the new show inspired by successful series Prisoner – has done.
Recent ratings reveal that Wentworth has become the most watched non-sports program in Australian television subscription history.
The release of timeshift viewing data for the first week of May shows the debut episode of Wentworth ranks as the highest rated episode of any series ever on Foxtel, with the episode attracting a cumulative average audience of over 630,000 viewers across the week.
It’s never too late to get hooked: this week’s episode of Wentworth (premiering Wednesday 22 May on SoHo) will be the fourth in the ten-episode season.
After the first Hangover film featured a baby in tow – adding more chaos to our bad lads’ stack of troubles, and with the second having featured a cheeky monkey, I would have liked to have seen the third (and supposedly final) of the popular franchise incorporating a genuine canine into ‘The Wolfpack’. A cute puppy would have done it. Then they could have called the flick The Hangover III: Hair Of The Dog. Genius!
Indeed, there are no cutesy animal shenanigans in the latest Hangover instalment but instead in-yer-face animal cruelty. The opening scene sees loveable dumb-ass Alan (Zack Galifianakis) proudly towing a giant, real-life giraffe along a freeway when – whoopsies – the creature’s tall neck whacks into a bridge and its head gets torn off only to land smack-bang on the windscreen of an unsuspecting driver.
Sure, it’s likely that no animal was actually hurt in the making of the movie (thank you CGI) but the lack of sentiment is certainly evident and we’re pretty sure animal activist groups like PETA and the RSPCA would be up in arms about it all. But it has to be said, the scene – although somewhat sickening – is very, very funny.
Once you get past the anti-animalia antics (there’s also a scene where ‘cocaine-addled’ roosters are abruptly handled), audiences should find the endless escapades in The Hangover Part III well worth the laugh – a laugh for every cent of the admission price, practically.
The topsy-turvy plot sees evil criminal Chow (introduced to us in the first movie) escaping from an Asian prison, all Shawshank Redemption-style, only to end up in Mexico with a request sent out to gullible Alan to meet him south of the border to “catch up”.
In reality, what Chow wants to do is con the Wolfpack into committing his dirty crimes for him.
What follows is a cat-and-mouse game that sees the boys ending up in Vegas once more, pathetically trying to get into famed Caesar’s Palace from the roof so as to nab Chow and bring him to justice (it’s either that or death to one of their friends by a hefty Mafioso played perfectly by John Goodman).
Yes, all the usual suspects are here, including blue-eyed, butter-wouldn’t-melt Phil (Bradley Cooper) who pretty much instigates the whole thing by suggesting that Alan be sent to a retreat for rehabilitation (of course they’re detoured), and dodgy dentist Stu (Ed Helms) who gets his hands on enough illegally prescribed drugs that even Chow can sniff them from across a smoky karaoke room.
Familiar and predictable in parts? Sure. But that’s why audiences love comedies like this. We see the gag coming but just don’t think the guys on the big screen will actually do it. In The Hangover Part III the dumb dudes do it again and again. And again.
The Hangover Part III is in cinemas now.
Click on the image top of story to view the trailer.
It was 2004 when we first met Amanda Seyfried on the big screen, as she sparkled in the teen-angst comedy Mean Girls. Having modelled since the age of 11 and put away several television roles prior to her celluloid debut, Seyfried seemed a natural on the silver screen, equipped with all those essential qualities: beauty, poise, pout, ambition, and that glint in the eye that demands to learn and know more about the fantastical filmic world around her.
Since Mean Girls, she has appeared in everything from romantic dramas (Dear John, Letters To Juliet) and erotic thrillers (Chloe, Jennifer’s Body), to quirky indie flicks (Nine Lives, Alpha Dog) and musicals (Mamma Mia!).
Her most recent turn has been in the stage-come-celluloid epic Les Misérables in which she plays Cosette, the orphan of an unwed mother deserted by her father. Hence her character is very much the linchpin of this Victor Hugo classic.
With her ability to portray a diverse array of handsome young women, it is no wonder that the House of Givenchy has hired Amanda as the face for its new Very Irresistible parfum (see a clip of it here).
In this interview, Amanda Seyfriend talks about how her role in Les Misérables took more from the book than the stage, and the occasional art of lip-synching.
You had some past musical experience with Mamma Mia!, the movie (2008). How did that experience help prepare you for this, your role of Cosette in Les Misérables?
This is a completely different animal. It is a drama, it is a tragedy, it is a really dark story told through song, which you would not think would work, but it is a phenomenon. With these actors and with Tom Hooper directing it, it actually pulls you into it. It is funny when you see Les Misérables (2012), when some of the characters speak you are kind of pulled out of it — you expect them to sing because the music lends itself to that feeling. It is just a really big challenge. For Mamma Mia!, I just recorded my stuff months ahead of time and learned how to lip-sync my voice. For this, it was completely different.
[Actor] Eddie Redmayne told me how HughJackman said that while you are lip-syncing stuff, you spend a lot of your brainpower thinking about syncing up with your words rather than focusing on the actual emotional aspect of the performance.
You cannot really be in the moment, and there is no freedom whatsoever. You are stuck with what you have recorded, and it works for a lot of things. It works for Mamma Mia! It is an entirely different genre.
Your character is a positive anchor in a very dark story. You have to maintain a certain energy level but still be aware of the tragedy around you.
I felt the responsibility of being that light in these densely tragic surroundings, and the circumstances are just tragic. I needed to be the source of light or maybe the only source of light.
It’s a very challenging part.
We took a lot of Cosette from the book because on stage she can sometimes just disappear in everything else that is going on. She is such a positive source, such a symbol of hope, and we had to make sure she was interesting as well.
In this day and age, it must be hard to keep somebody isolated in the way that Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) does with Cosette because of cell phones, the Internet and everything else. How did you get in the headspace of being completely cut off?
You have to have this kind of naivety that I think I actually have in certain ways. That was a resource for me; just someone who actually has not seen the bad parts or really experienced the good parts. [The character of Cosette] is very protected and in a way she is very comfortable, but at the same time she cannot even explore and really has no idea what is out there, which is why this falling in love with Marius (Eddie Redmayne) at first sight pulls her out of her cage in a way. You can see that teenage angst at that point. She becomes alive.
Les Misérables is available now on Blu-ray and DVD through Universal Home Entertainment (and just in time for Mother’s Day!).
Pictured (top of story): Amanda Seyfried for Parfums Givenchy, and (below) a still from Les Misérables.
Australian singer-songwriter Ben Lee has never shied away from having his say. He is, after all, the guy who blatantly titled one of his songs Cigarettes Will Kill You, while on the esoteric front he named one of his LPs Awake Is The New Sleep – a phrase that hinted toward a deeper delving into everyday consciousness.
Now, with the help of a little-known medicinal plant from the Amazon, Lee delves further into esoteric thought to create the perfect meditative soundtrack. His new album is called Ayahuasca: Welcome To The Work, and it is not only inspired by ceremonial and spiritual practise but hopes to inspire a little ritualism in each of us.
Here he chats with Antonino Tati about the power of psychedelic drugs, his mentoring on The Voice, and a very daring charity he’s supporting called MAPS – the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies.
Turn on, tune in, but don’t necessarily drop out…
Congratulations on your new album. I must say it has a rather odd title in Ayahuasca: Welcome To The Work. I believe it has something to do with a plant found in South America – but how do you pronounce its name, and can you tell us a bit about it?
[Ben proceeds to pronounce it:] “Ah-you-wah-ska”. Ayahuasca is a plant or medicine native to the Amazon and its surrounding areas. It’s a psychedelic medicine, I suppose, that offers an intense experience that takes you very profoundly into your own buried unconscious.
A bit like mescaline?
It’s similar in the sense that it’s an indigenous medicine used for spiritual guidance, yeah, and that it’s a shamanistic experience. It works on personal, psychological issues, and on interpersonal issues. You can never tell exactly what’s going to happen, but essentially it treats the ‘illness’ in each person as needed.
Are there any negative side effects; any limit to taking it?
No, it’s completely non-toxic. It’s actually a detoxifier, so part of the experience of working with Ayahuasca is purging, which might mean vomiting or what have you. It basically pushes toxins out of your system. But, as with other therapeutic tools like chiropractics or psychotherapy, you wouldn’t put yourself in the hands of someone who is inexperienced or someone who is not a great teacher or facilitator if you’re going to be in such a vulnerable state. So it’s really something that must be worked with ceremonially, in a group, guided by a leader.
I assume Ayahuasca is legal in South America, although if you tried to bring it into Australia you’d get a slap on the wrist…
It’s actually in a very grey area because it’s only been coming into Western culture in the last decade or two. The active neuro-chemical component in it is is illegal to produce as a chemical, but it does exist naturally in plants – and even in the human brain. In America, some churches have it protected under the Religious Freedoms Act and there have been a couple of similar cases in Australia but nothing that has reached high up to the Supreme Court. I’m sure it’s something that will be sorted out in a little while…
Did you write songs for the new album while you were on it?
No, it’s not possible. The actual medicine is immobilising in that it really forces you to take stock of your inner world and there’s no concern in your mind that ‘I need to do this’ or ‘I need to make this’. It’s, like, you’re fighting for your life. But certainly those experiences were inspiration for writing – later. It wasn’t as much a cathartic thing as it was to make music as a gift for the medicine. As if to say ‘thank you’ for what it’s given to me, and here’s my attempt to bring some of the wisdom from that ceremonial work into music.
What about the writing of some of your previous material; has there been any illicit substances used to inspire it? A bit of marijuana perhaps?
I’ve experienced all those things but I’ve never brought them into my music in a literal way. The thing is, I’ve never experienced something like this ceremonially, and I think that is a big part of what gives Ayahuasca its power. You know, we live in a very de-ritualised world and ritual is actually a very important part of maturing, of growing up and getting to know ourselves.
It’d be nice if your new CD came with a how-to guide, but like you said, you’d really need someone who knows the practise to carry out the ritual with you…
Well I almost did the opposite. On the back of the album I told people that if you’re drawn to Ayahuasca, please take it very seriously – as seriously as you’d take going to see a therapist or a doctor.
There are some songs on the new album whose titles alone seem pretty dark, such as Welcome To The House Of Mystical Death…
To me Mystical Death is not inherently dark. It depends where you stand in that moment. To me it’s about the letting go of the one perspective and the birthing of a new perspective. The part of you that you’re letting go of, you might think of it as being dark, but the new thing coming in can be a very positive experience.
You released a song called Cigarettes Will Kill You a few years ago and some people may have thought you were being a bit heavy… Do you take that feedback on board?
It’s vulnerable to open up a part of yourself, especially something that’s got a taboo element in society. Whether it’s coming out of the closet as gay for someone – I understand why that would be scary; and similarly talking about this type of ceremonial work with psychedelics. It’s very vulnerable. I’m cautiously prepared to discuss it, but at the same time I don’t feel the need to be defensive; I just have to speak my truth as an artist. That’s what makes artists interesting.
You like to make music with a bit of a message…
I’ve always been interested in the merging of work about consciousness with popular culture. You know, it’s funny: putting out this Ayahuasca album and being a mentor on The Voice perfectly encapsulates my dual ways of thinking. I want to take all this esoteric work and understanding and spiritual enquiry, and I want to contextualise it in the language of my world – which is music.
What is the most interesting thing you’ve discovered whilst being a mentor on The Voice?
It’s been interesting doing The Voice. I saw some people come into it with a strategy of ‘How do I play the game?’, ‘How do I win this thing?’. Whereas my attitude to it was, ‘Guys, you probably are not going to win this; you probably will get two-and-a-half to five minutes of national television in front of two million people… How are you going to use that to be authentically you?’ That to me would create the next step to their life. I find it a bit boring, people that strategise too much.
That brings me to another question about reality television talent contests; do they compromise a person’s integrity – to see them being shaped, possibly even pre-packaged, right from the start?
Yeah, I’d say it probably does. I don’t necessarily look to these types of singing competitions to find the next Bob Dylan, or the next Bruce Springsteen, or the next Beethoven. These competitions are a study in the psychology of performance and that really has its own appeal to it. There’s an illusion that people think that out of a singing competition on TV you’re meant to discover the next Beatles. I think those types of artists come from a very different type of collision of events and influences.
You have an actress-come-singer in Jessica Chapnik Kahn who provides some vocals on your new album. How did that collaboration come about?
I’d made a few records with Jessica, including the soundtrack to Nash Edgerton’s film, The Square,a few years ago. Then I produced a project for her [under the guise of Appleonia] so we had a very profound and trusted relationship. Also, she’s been working with the medicine, so it became a natural step for us to explore that.
Some of the songs you’ve made together are very contemplative. Listeners might even consider doing a yoga session to them.
Well I was thinking more of a meditative journey. I want this to be an inner journey where the music is the background to it.
Tell us a bit about the charity that all of the artist royalties for this album are going towards, MAPS.
MAPS are basically interested in legal, safe, government-endorsed testing of these different, natural and pharmaceutical psychedelics. Basically, in the post-1960s scare about psychedelics, the baby was thrown out with the bath water. These were medicines that, at least for a brief moment, were considered to be very beneficial for things like post-traumatic stress, depression, schizophrenia and other disorders. In fact, LSD was a psychiatric drug before people used it recreationally. When these things became more recognised as recreational drugs, they became outlawed, and all the potential research about the value of them got thrown out.
Careful there; some might say you’re sounding like a pusher…
Hey, I’m not, like, a psychedelic evangelist that thinks everybody needs to take drugs, but I think that bringing this conversation into the mainstream hints at a deeper conversation which is ‘What role does healthy consciousness play in the health of our society?’ And until we can really look at consciousness, I don’t think we’ll really have answers to things like why are women so mistreated?… Why do we mistreat our environment so severely? You know, you look at the ways that patriarchal society has repressed and damaged various parts of the world and I think a lot of it has to do with our relationship to our unconscious. So I’m really interested in how a group like MAPS raise some very deep, philosophical questions within a very communicable and digestible dialogue.
Turning something once considered taboo into something positive?
Yeah, into something non-taboo and into something that can be discussed.
Ayahuasca: Welcome To The Work is out now through One World Music.
Pictured above: Ben Lee with collaborator Jessica Chapnik Kahn.
Fresh after news that Justin Timberlake will be releasing Part Two of his very successful The 20/20 Experience LP in September, comes the announcement from Live Nation that the well-heeled dude will be touring Australia.
No dates have been announced yet but we’re guessing some time mid-next year since his 20/20 Experience World Tour only kicks off in Canada in October this year.
We promise we’ll reveal dates as soon as we know.
Wally de Backer, aka Gotye, has sent a personal letter to the Minister of Communications, Stephen Conroy, urging him to commit to adequate funding for digital community radio services as part of next week’s Federal Budget.
Currently there is a $1.4 million per annum shortfall in funding, which could mean many community stations get switched off.
In his letter, Gotye came across as very humble indeed, despite having sold over 10 million albums worldwide, saying “Australian community radio has been instrumental in my recent international success; without the support and encouragement of community stations when I started self- releasing my music, I would not have been able to develop my career.”
Since having her memoir, The Vogue Factor, published in March this year, ex-Vogue Australia editor Kirstie Clements has caught the attention of one of the world’s highest rating TV talkshows, The View.
Co-hosted by Whoopie Goldberg and Barbara Walters, tomorrow’s program will feature Clements as a guest where, no doubt, she will be quizzed about one element of her autobiography in particular – her opinion on the drastic measures models often take to remain ‘catwalk thin’.
In recent weeks Clements has appeared on Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, NBC’s Today and CNN, and the talkshow requests continue to flow in.
Says Clements, “I am so thrilled to be invited to appear on The View. Barbara Walters is a personal idol of mine, and the show is such an important touch point for women all over the world.”
Clements’ memoir takes a good, hard look at the volatility of the fashion industry. She was unceremoniously sacked after 13 years in the Vogue Australia editor’s chair but doesn’t seem to have any issue with dishing the dirt. To see what else she may reveal, tune in to The View tomorrow, 9am EST, on Channel Nine.
The Vogue Factor is published through Melbourne University Publishing.
Unless you’ve had your head in the clouds, you’d be aware of the fantasy television show, Grimm, best described as “a procedural cop drama with a twist” – the twist being that victims and villains in the show are inspired by characters out of the infamous Grimm’s Fairy Tales.
The show, like Once Upon A Time, caters to a postmodernist-loving audience that appreciates classic tales turned on their head, where the lines between hero and victim are occasionally blurred, and where classic scenarios are thrown into modern context.
Actor Russell Hornsby, whose previous TV credits have included playing a cop in Lincoln Heights and a patient in In Treatment, plays the major role of Hank Griffin, a homicide detective in Grimm.
Here, he talks about the show’s popularity, and things that scare him in real life.
Russell Hornsby, pictured front of the cast of Grimm (above).
How would you sum up Grimm for people who haven’t seen it yet?
It’s basically a procedural fantasy based on the Grimms’ Fairy Tales. We’ve sort of updated the idea of the stories and we have this guy Nick Burkhardt [David Giuntoli] who is a police detective with the power to be able to see the creatures when they’re in human form.
And how would you sum up your character of Hank?
He is Nick’s detective partner. He has a wonderful evolution from not knowing to knowing about the world of the Grimms [the guardians charged with keeping order between creatures and humans]. He’s sarcastic, a little dark and somewhat aloof. Do I have anything in common with him? Well, I can be sarcastic but I’m a lot more humorous and witty in real life than he is. I’m also not as in love with love as Hank is. He’s been married a few times whereas I’ve been married one time and [laughs] I don’t let the smooth taste of a woman fool me too often.
How do you account for the popularity of the show?
I think that audiences today are a lot more sophisticated and a lot smarter than they used to be ten or 20 years ago. It’s no longer just about smoke and mirrors and it’s no longer just about effects. People want to be engaged a lot more in story. As film and television effects evolve we’re not taken by the tricks anymore. Writers are now having to go back to telling better stories.
Do you get recognised more because of the show’s success?
Absolutely. I am now officially an international face. I won’t say I’m an international name but I am an international face because my character is internationally known. People don’t know who the hell I am but they know who Hank is. So far I’ve been recognised in South Africa, London, Australia and Sweden.
How is it attending fan conventions like Comic-Con?
It’s overwhelming, to be honest. It’s fun on a certain level but it’s just overwhelming – and what I mean by that is that I’m overwhelmed by the fanaticism of Comic-Con. I appreciate and respect it because they love the show so much, but I’m not used to being made a big deal of. I come from the theatre so I’m used to getting off stage after the show, hearing the applause, maybe getting a standing ovation if you’re lucky, then you go out the stage door and there’s nothing but the sound of crickets and drunks in the alley. They have no idea who you are, they’re just asking ‘Brother, can you spare a dime?’ So this is all new to me.
Do fans at conventions ask you some tricky questions?
They ask me questions and I have no idea where they’re going with it or where I need to go with the answer. Because as Hank I don’t deal with the mythology as much first-hand – although I’m starting to now. I didn’t grow up playing Dungeons & Dragons so it’s hard for me to wrap my head around it, although I’m getting there. For the first year I was like ‘What are you talking about?’ but now I’m starting to get it.
It’s a scary show but what scares you in real life?
I’m scared of dogs and rats. I was bitten by a Doberman Pinscher when I was seven so I’m not too fond of dogs. I have this inner fear that I battle with; it’s that thing of when you’re walking home, along a country road or something like that, I have a healthy fear of a dog. And rats? I told my wife Denise early on ‘If a rat or a mouse comes into the house you can’t count on me to help’. It’s happened, too. A mouse came in and I ran for the hills. My wife ended up trapping it, but at least I had enough dignity to scoop it up and throw it out.
Do you recall hearing Grimms’ Fairy Tales when you were young?
They weren’t a big part of my childhood. I was Disneyfied as a kid. I knew the fluffy versions and so I wasn’t exposed to the true grit of the Grimms’ Fairy Tales until I got to do this show. I’ve since read 20 to 30 of them and in some ways it doesn’t surprise me how gritty they are. Europeans are a bit grittier and a little more direct, more honest, so they’re consistent with the European style. There’s a gruff, hard exterior, whereas Americans deal in fantasy. We want to act like everything is fine while under the surface people are getting killed left and right. We never want to deal in truth.
You also played a police officer on Lincoln Heights as well as on other shows but did you do any fresh research for Hank?
I’ve played so many police officers it’s one and the same. I’ve done all that – I’ve done the ride-alongs, I’ve done the shooting range stuff, I have uncles who are in law enforcement in Boston, I’ve been in the hood, I’ve seen people gunned down – unfortunately. Some things you don’t have to do research for – you just get it and you know it. On television it’s about how much je ne sais quoi you bring to the role. It becomes about your personality. After a while you have to throw research out the door and just be interesting.
You were a football player in college so what lead you into acting?
If I’d gone into football as a career I don’t know how much control I would have had over my life. I realised I’d have a little more control as an actor and at least my bones are intact. Also, my spirit is to be a performer and I tapped into that early in life and realised it was the only way I could really function and live – through some form of performance. I can’t sit behind a desk and I don’t have the patience to write, I’m a performer in my soul. I started acting in high school and friends of mine will tell you that it was consistent with my character to be an actor. I was always the centre of attention, I was always the one with a joke, I always had a song to sing… I used to communicate in bursts of music and I didn’t really learn how to speak English until I was about 20 years old. I communicated through song.
What are your all-time scariest films and TV shows?
Things like Friday The 13th (1980) and A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984) are so scary I couldn’t stand to watch them. Growing up I was more into musicals like The Wizard Of Oz (1939) and Damn Yankees (1958), although the winged monkeys in The Wizard Of Oz used to scare the crap out of me as a kid. Along with The Wicked Witch Of The West, they used to give me nightmares.
Grimm Season One is available on Blu-ray (SRP $59.95) and DVD (SRP $54.95) through Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
Bonus features on both the Blu-ray and DVD versions include extended and deleted scenes, character bios, audition tapes, and a featurette ‘Grimm – Making Monsters’ which goes behind the scenes with the team who bring the show’s villainous characters to life.
The remaining members of the Beastie Boys have signed on with Random House Publishing to write their own memoir.
Mike D and Ad-Rock have said this won’t be a traditional band autobiography but rather – quote – “a pastiche of voices, images, irreverent humour and pop-cultural reference points” which we think sounds all very postmodern university graduate rather than bad-boy rapper.
A title for the memoir has yet to be confirmed, but Cream suggests something like ‘No Sleep Till Deadline’.
She brought fabulous YOU into this wonderful world and so we think she deserves special attention. No matter how big or small your budget is this MOTHER’S DAY, here are some nifty gift ideas – from $9.95 knick-knacks to three-figure household accessories to beauty products to boot.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Set of pop/rock coasters. DESCRIPTION: Though she may be discreet about her age, we’re guessing your Mum was born any time from 1970 backwards so she likely grew up listening to anything from Madonna to the Beatles. If so, she might just dig these cool coasters, each comes in a set of four depicting a particular artist’s more famous album covers. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Loves her retro music. COST: $9.95 for set of four. AVAILABLE FROM: pickaposta via eBay.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Vinyl Record 3-Tier Cake Stand. DESCRIPTION: A fabulous conversation piece, this cake stand is for the hipper hostess of high tea parties. Made from real vinyl records, it’s guaranteed to add a little rock and roll to her next soiree. PERSONALITY TRAIT: She knows who The Ramones are. COST: $39.00. AVAILABLE FROM: www.vinylcuts.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Michel Design Works Peacock Teatowel. DESCRIPTION: She can never have enough tea towels so why not make a statement with some of them? Featuring bold, natural-history prints, there’s nothing demure or shy about Michel Design Works designs. Teatowel made of natural woven cotton so it’s as practical as it is impressive. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Likes to make a statement; may even be a little on the flamboyant side. COST: $14.95. AVAILABLE FROM: Stockist enquiries 1300 555 150 or visit www.villamondo.com.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Davis & Waddell Chicken Egg Basket. DESCRIPTION: Made of wire, this sturdy chook-shaped basket is just the thing to keep eggy-weggs safe and sound. A kooky addition to any kitchen. PERSONALITY TRAIT: A little quirky. COST: $14.99. AVAILABLE FROM: Phone (03) 9474 1300 or visit www.davisandwaddell.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Oxfam Retro Teapot and Cup Set. DESCRIPTION: This fun retro yellow and blue ceramic teapot was made by artisans for the Craftlink organisation in Vietnam especially for Oxfam Shop – that passionate supporter of fair trade, empowering disadvantaged communities by paying them fair and stable prices for their work. Looks great and you’ll feel real good about the cause! PERSONALITY TRAIT: Worldly and practical. COST: $32.95. AVAILABLE FROM: Enquiries 1800 088 455 or visit www.oxfamshop.org.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Eau De Parfum Lemoncello. DESCRIPTION: A stunning fragrance the melds Meyer Lemon and other citrus notes with Lily of the Valley. Lavender and Neroli sit atop a base of Ambergris. With 18-20% fragrance concentration, the scent is long-lasting. PERSONALITY TRAIT: She loves to deconstruct classic things. COST: $49.95. AVAILABLE FROM: Enquiries (03) 9703 1000 or visit www.everydayluxuries.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: KitchenAid Artisan Deluxe Hand Blender. DESCRIPTION: This hand blender is perfectly weighted with a rubber hand stick grip helping her power through blending, shredding, mincing, chopping, whipping, frothing, puréeing and more. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Loves to cook but refrains from being a slave in the kitchen. COST: $249.00. AVAILABLE FROM: Enquiries (02) 4902 6500 or visit www.kitchenaid.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Nespresso Pixie with Aeroccino. DESCRIPTION: Nespresso has refined its much-loved Pixie machine by introducing a sleek, stainless steel panelled option. Robust and industrial looking, it’d suit the most modern of kitchens. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Likes her style like she craves her caffeine. COST: $399.00. AVAILABLE FROM: Nespresso boutiques and select appliance retailers; phone 1800 623 033 for stockists or visit www.nespresso.com.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Lush ‘Don’t Knock It Till You’ve Tried It’ gift pack. DESCRIPTION: Tropical-themed beauty treats from one of Australia’s most popular concept outlets, a cool reusable tin ‘lunch box’ packed with bathing goodies including Each Peach Massage Bar, Blackberry Bath Bomb and Karma Komba Shampoo Bar. PERSONALITY TRAIT: She’s quirky with a sense of humour while liking to maintain a good beauty regime. COST: $59.95. AVAILABLE FROM: Lush stores nationally. Phone 1300 587 428 for store info or visit www.lush.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Eurovision Song Contest Dress-Up Sticker Book. DESCRIPTION: Yes, you did read correctly. Courtesy of SBS comes this camp sticker book celebrating everybody’s favourite naff-naff talent quest, the Eurovision Song Contest. The book contains over 120 reusable stickers that can be mixed and matched across 16 sticker pages on male and female ‘contestants’. From ABBA-like ensembles to Gaga-esque creations, there’s hours of fun to be had. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Too much time on her hands. COST: $19.95. AVAILABLE FROM: Published through Hardie Grant Books, available at bookstores and select newsagencies or visit www.hardiegrant.com.au for more information.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Clarins beauty products. DESCRIPTION: A favourite for beauty editors the world over, Clarins provide trusted and established products such as the Beauty Flash Balm (middle), and new offerings like the Double Serum Complete Age Control Concentrate (left) and BB Skin Perfecting Cream (right). PERSONALITY TRAIT: She’s tried a lot of cosmetic products in her life and now only wants the tried, tested and trusted. The Double Serum Complete Age Control Concentrate, for example, is the culmination of 27 years of plant science expertise combining ingredients of green tea (for the prevention of lines and wrinkles), green banana (for firmness and elasticity), kiwi (for suppleness and tone) and survixyl (oxygenation). COST: $90.00 for Double Serum Complete Age Control Concentrate, $60.00 for 50ml tube of Beauty Flash Balm, $50 for the BB Cream. AVAILABLE FROM: Leading department stores, select pharmacies and retail specialists, and online at www.adorebeauty.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Clinique Repairwear Laser Wrinkle Correcting Eye Cream. DESCRIPTION: A correcting cream that addresses the entire eye area, resulting in a more refreshed youthful appearance. It helps protect against environmental aggressors, visibly improving the appearance of lines, wrinkles and overall texture, while strengthening the skin’s moisture barrier. PERSONALITY TRAIT: The Mum who doesn’t mind the hint the years are going by but who knows a little help from a classic name in cosmetics doesn’t hurt. COST: $55.00 for a 15ml tube. AVAILABLE FROM: Clinique counters nationwide and at www.clinique.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Pelactiv Cleansing Duo Pack. DESCRIPTION: Created by Australian skin therapists in conjunction with biochemists, Pelactiv deliver a complete professional skincare and retail range tailored to suit all skin types and conditions. This handy duo pack includes gentle foaming cleanser and essential clarifying toner, both containing the purest of Australian native plant extracts including aloe vera, green tea and citrus oils. PERSONALITY TRAIT: She appreciates beauty products packed with natural goodness. COST: $49.00. AVAILABLE FROM: Quality beauty outlets and select pharmacies. Also visit www.pelactiv.com.au.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Moroccanoil Hydration Pack. DESCRIPTION: A beautifully packaged collection of quality Moroccanoil haircare products including hydrating shampoo, hydration conditioner, styling cream, hydrating mask, and Moroccanoil Treatment. Plus a fabulous recyclable beauty bag. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Conscientious, consistent and takes great care in her appearance. COST: $52.25. AVAILABLE FROM: Stocksts available at www.moroccanoil.com.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Bottega Veneta fragrance. DESCRIPTION: A fragrance inspired by the Venetian countryside, its scent is redolant of hay, earth, forest and flowers. An improvement on the original Bottega Veneta fragrance – if that was possible – with the addition of gardenia within its heart notes. PERSONALITY TRAIT: She’s bold, classic and stylish. COST: Eau de toilette 30ml $95.00, 50ml $135.00, 75ml $165.00. AVAILABLE FROM: David Jones and Bottega Veneta stores. For stockists phone 1800 812 663.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Curtis & Clarke Pomander Diffuser. DESCRIPTION: With notes of sweet orange blended with warming cloves and cinnamon creates an alluring aroma. Contained in a classic cut blottle, as decorative as it is pragmatic. PERSONALITY TRAIT: Appreciates good scents and good sense. COST: $48.95. AVAILABLE FROM: www.pacificaskincare.co.nz.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur. DESCRIPTION: Liqueur made from Sicilian grown blood oranges. Versatile as a base spirit, modifying sweetener, or as the star ingredient in a winter cocktail. PERSONALITY TRAIT: She’s bold enough to try new liqueurs and clever enough to appreciate the purest of essential ingredients. COST: $70.00. AVAILABLE FROM: Select liquor stores nationally; for stocksits phone (02) 9402 5100.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Quality reading material. DESCRIPTION: Get Mum a riveting book to sink her teeth into. Our picks of the month: Petit Mort by Beatrice Hitchman (set in the glamorous but noiresque world or French cinema in the early 1900s), Ripples On A Pond by Joy Dettman (more period drama – this time in the ’70s, set in an Aussie country town with dark secrets), and The Deliverance Of Evil by Roberto Costantini (a psychological thriller about a killer on the loose in Italy). PERSONALITY TRAIT: Loves reading deeply… COST: Petit Mort $27.99 published through Allen & Unwin, Ripples On A Pond $29.99 published through Macmillan, The Deliverance Of Evil $22.99 published through Quercus. AVAILABLE FROM: Quality bookstores and book e-tailers.
↑ WHAT IT IS: Donation to the United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR. DESCRIPTION: Give your Mum a gift that helps refugee mothers around the world by making a tax deductible donation to the United Nations Refugee Agency, UNHCR. From as little as $26, a mother’s day gift package will buy a few simple items that can help save lives. Choose the amount and item you wish to donate and your Mum will receive her UNHCR Mother’s Day gift card via email or for you to print and post, telling her of your donation to refugee mothers. PERSONALITY TRAIT: A charitable woman. COST: Donations start at $26 which will provide kits to 10 refugee mothers to give birth in a clean environment. Kits contain baby wrap, soap and plastic sheeting. AVAILABLE FROM: www.unrefugees.org.au/mothersday.
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