The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.
There is a special sort of loneliness about sitting in a cinema on your own. Over the past year, I have frequently found myself watching an Australian movie as the sole member of an audience and, on three occasions, with only one other person in the cinema. Once the lights go down, it can be an uncomfortable, even spooky, feeling of detachment. Movie-going should be a communal activity of human smells, the eating of food, united laughter and tears. It heightens our pleasure to be able to share common experience in a dark cave, entranced by what is happening on the giant screen filled with light. Unfortunately that didn't happen to me very often, and the solitude probably made some dark films even grimmer.
John Keats's letters to Fanny Brawne have survived as a largely complete collection, and are now the subject of renewed interest thanks to Jane Campion's film Bright Star (released on 26 December ), which retells the story of Keats's truncated passion with his 'dearest Girl'.