My Oscar predictions 2023

Each year, as many of you who follow this blog might know, I make my Oscar predictions.

I’m normally pretty good, with a strike rate usually in the mid 90% range.

This year it’s going to be difficult, because I haven’t seen many of the films, and so I’ll be making my predictions on a mix of what I’ve gleaned from the trades since the Venice Film Festival last year, when Tar became a front runner for Cate Blanchett to pick up Best Actress.

Avatar, The Way of the Water and Maverick Top Gun have been huge commercial successes, and many have said they are the two films that have brought audiences back to the cinema. But that’s true to a point.

Having screened my very small film Facing Fear in commercial multiplexes both in Australia late last year, and in the US and Mexico earlier this year, what I witnessed was a paucity of people. The multiplexes I went to were virtually ghost houses. On many occasions my film was the only one that had any significant activity.

I think Todd McCarthy was right when he wrote in The Hollywood Reporter late last year that the cinema going experience, as we’d once known it, was gone and was never coming back. That won’t be the case for the big event movies, like the Avatars and the Top Guns, but for the smaller arthouse or even smaller studio films, everyone now is in the mindset of waiting till it comes out on a streamer. That’s just the thinking now.

Back to the Oscars.
I have two favourite films and one film I dislike with a passion.

My two favourite films are:
All Quiet on the Western Front

The film I dislike with a passion:
Everything Everywhere All at Once.

All Quiet on the Western Front is a superbly made film that says powerful things about the human condition, and it was audacious and bold in its storytelling.

Elvis in my opinion is the best biopic of a musician I’ve yet seen. I think it’s Baz Luhrmann’s best film, without a doubt.

I didn’t rush out to see Elvis. Baz’s films, for me, are often times flash before substance, and I’m the only person I know who fell asleep in Moulin Rouge. And please, let’s not discuss Australia. I saw that film three times, not because I wanted to, but due to social obligations. Hugh Jackman soaping his abs while Nicole Kidman looks on adoringly? Silhouettes of an aboriginal man perched on one leg holding a spear, straight off a tea-towel you could have bought at The Rocks in the 1950s?

Give me a break.

But Elvis is in a whole other league.
And Austin Butler is magnificent.

My dear friends Wayne and Libby Pashley, who have done the sound on all my movies since Kiss or Kill in 1996, did the sound for Elvis and they deservedly are up for a Best Sound Oscar. I sincerely hope they win. Their work was impeccable. But the Academy likes noise with their sound so probably the noisiest film of the year, Maverick Top Gun, will get the gong. I hope the voters have more taste and discernment than that.

The film I dislike with a passion?
I just didn’t get Everything, Everywhere…

I admire the film for its outrageous audacity. And Jamie Lee Curtis deserves an Oscar for her performance, which is a total knockout. But the story? Where did that go in all the showmanship of technique? And where was the emotional connection? I stood outside that film as I watched it. It never invited me inside.

Like I say, I’m in awe of its technical and creative bravura. But for me, story is everything and when I became disengaged with the story, about halfway through, the movie lost me.

Okay, so here are my predictions. As I say, I’m taking a bit of a punt this year, because I haven’t seen many of the films – but this is my list:

Best Picture
All Quiet on the Western Front

Best Director
Steven Spielberg / The Fabelmans

Best Actor
Austin Butler / Elvis

Best Actress
Cate Blanchett / Tar

Best Supporting Actor
Ke Huy Quan / Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Supporting Actress
Jamie Lee Curtis / Everything Everywhere All at Once

Best Original Screenplay
Triangle of Sadness

Best Adapted Screenplay
All Quiet on the Western Front

Best International Film
All Quiet on the Western Front

Best Cinematography
Mandy Walker / Elvis

Best Film Editing
Maverick Top Gun

Best Sound:
Wayne Pashley / Elvis

Best Production Design

Visual Effects
Avatar, Way of Water

Original Score
All Quiet on the Western Front

Original Song
Maverick Top Gun

Best Costume Design

Best Makeup & Hair
The Whale

Best Documentary

Best Animated Feature

So on Sunday night US time, Monday Australian time, we’ll know the results. We’ll find out whether the film I dislike the most gets the majority of gongs, or the Netflix movie All Quiet on the Western Front, my pick, gets the streamer’s first Best Picture statuette.

Personally, I hope like hell my mates Wayne and Libby Pashley come away with some excess baggage.

Audit of 2022, and plans for 2023

As readers of this blog know, each year around this time I do an an “audit” of what I achieved this year pegged against what I hoped to achieve this time last year. And I outline what I hope to achieve in the coming year.

This year was really the year Jennifer and I came out of COVID hibernation.

For the first time in nearly two years we began to fly again, firstly to Tasmania to do the “interstitial” shooting for Facing Fear, then later in the year to the US – to attend the film’s screening at a prestigious film festival in Sedona.

More recently we travelled to Spain to do early pre-production work on the film based on my Camino memoir, The Way, My Way. It will be titled Walk The Walk.

More on that later.

Most of the first half of the year was taken up with completing Facing Fear, with the latter part of the year taken up with marketing the film in its theatrical rollout around Australia.

I also set up US theatrical distribution, and that rollout begins on January 18th at San Rafael in the Bay Area of Northern California. The film will subsequently be screened throughout various states across the country.

This year also marked Jennifer and my fortieth wedding anniversary. We celebrated that by going to Broken Hill and hanging out there for a few days. It was wonderful, and romantic.

It was also the year I became a gamer. Yes, a video-gamer. My eldest son Henry has been a serious gamer since he was a child – he’s now 36 – and he has been helping me discover this new and highly creative form of storytelling.

I completed Journey and that for me was a transcendent experience.

I bought a Nintendo Switch, and got hooked on Zelda Breath of the Wild, and Limbo and Ori Will of the Wisp. For Christmas I’m getting a Play Station 5, or PS5. These consoles are not easy to get, but get one I did, and I look forward to playing such games as Death Stranding, Stray, and Ratchet & Clank.

Perhaps the biggest thing that I did this year though was reveal that I had Parkinson’s disease. This was a big deal for me, because I’d kept it secret for nearly five years, telling only a small band of family and friends.

I revealed it because it comes up in my movie Facing Fear. When I got the diagnosis four and a half years ago, (although I had recognisable symptoms some 12 to 18 months earlier) I experienced very real fear. It’s been a relief now to make it public.

I want to use the experience of having this (supposedly) incurable progressive degenerative brain disease to try and help and inspire others. That’s the only reason that makes sense to me as to why I got Parkinson’s – to in some small way put it into service for others.

I also feel I made a big leap spiritually this year.
It’s hard to articulate, but I feel it.

So, now for the audit.
What did I say I wanted to achieve in 2022, and what did I achieve this year?
Here’s what I said I wanted to achieve:

  • Complete Facing Fear – The Movie. Yes, done.
    I completed the film on October 9th. It’s now in distribution.
  • Secure the financing for The Way, My Way. Partially –
    The film based on my Camino memoir will be shooting in Australia and Spain commencing in May of this coming year. Financing is coming in, but I’ll be seeking more.
  • Set up Kiss or Kill as a feature film remake in the US. In process
    Two notable producers are working on a remake.
  • Set up Palace of Fires as a limited TV series in the US. Not done. Yet.
  • Write another novel – a thriller this time.  Done –
    But it’s not a fictional novel, it’s a non-fiction book, which has secured publication and will be launched in 2023. It’s called The Judith Sessions, and it’s 65k words.

So what do I hope to achieve in 2023:

  • Market Facing Fear throughout the US and in other territories.
  • Have a new book, The Judith Sessions, published.
  • Have a second new book published, a fictional work called The Golden Bridge.
  • Shoot and edit Walk The Walk – a feature film based on my memoir The Way, My Way.
  • Shoot the third film in my Personal Guidance System series, this film called I Hope.
  • Launch a website aimed at helping people understand and deal with fear.

That’s it.
A huge year coming up.

I need to factor in Me Time – time spent on me, including yoga, meditation, exercise, and relaxation – including becoming more proficient in gaming. That’s the only way I’ll achieve all I wish to achieve this coming year.

And it’s the only way I’ll get on top of my Parkinson’s disease.
Let’s see how this coming year treats me.

Oscars 2022 – audit of my predictions, and the assault

Firstly, I can’t discuss the Oscars without referencing the hideous assault by Will Smith on the host, Chris Rock.

I’ve said all I need to say in various Facebook posts – but just to say that I found the incident shocking and appalling – but I found the audience’s response even more appalling. To applaud Will Smith and give him a standing ovation later when he won the Best Actor Oscar was shameful. Do these people lack all common decency and integrity?

Will Smith today has come out, some 24hrs later, and apologised to Chris Rock, but only after the Screen Actors Guild and the Academy resoundly condemned his actions and said that they would mount an investigation.

He had an opportunity to apologise to Chris Rock during his acceptance speech, but chose not to do so.

Bad joke or no, there’s simply no excuse to assault someone, and especially in front of a worldwide audience. What signal does that send out? With Hollywood standing and applauding, it sends out the signal that it’s okay to assault someone if you’re offended by what they’ve said.

And please, they call it a “slap,” as if that somehow diminishes the act of violence. It was an assault.

Enough of that.
How did I go with my predictions?
I did okay – I picked sixteen right and got four wrong.

Best Picture

Best Director
Jane Campion / The Power of the Dog

Best Actor
Will Smith / King Richard

Best Actress
Nicole Kidman / Being the Ricardos

Best Supporting Actor
Troy Kotsur / CODA

Best Supporting Actress
Ariana DeBose / West Side Story

Best Original Screenplay
Kenneth Branagh / Belfast

Best Adapted Screenplay
Jane Campion / The Power of the Dog

Best International Film
Drive My Car

Best Cinematography
Greig Fraser / Dune

Best Film Editing

Best Sound Mixing:

Best Production Design

Visual Effects

Original Score
Dune / Hans Zimmer

Original Song
No Time to Die / No Time to Die

Best Costume Design

Best Makeup & Hair

Best Documentary
Summer of Soul

Best Animated Feature

So of the 20 predictions I made, I got four wrong. That’s an 80% success rate.
That’s okay!

I never would have predicated a punch up!

My Oscar Predictions 2022

Each year, as many of you who follow this blog might know, I make my Oscar predictions.

I’m normally pretty good, with a strike rate usually in the mid 90% range.

This year it’s going to be difficult, because whilst The Power of the Dog seemed to have early momentum and be the front runner, CODA has recently taken the baton and now looks like the film to beat for Best Picture. But there’s also Kenneth Branagh’s Belfast to be considered, and Denis Villeneuve’s spectacular space epic, Dune. Not to mention Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story.

It will be interesting to see whether Jane Campion’s faux pas involving the Williams sisters has an impact. (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, just go onto Twitter and search #janecampion) Given that this occurred just before final voting for the Academy members commenced, and given the Academy’s strong stance on diversity etc, I suspect that it might have taken the shine off her film in certain circles. How much, is to be seen.

I haven’t seen all the movies this year. Paul Thomas Anderson’s Licorice Pizza is the one film I’m dying to see. PTA is a director who, for me, has never made a bad movie, and in my eyes has made two masterpieces – Magnolia and There will be Blood.

Adam McKay’s subversive Don’t Look Up was an outrageous piece of work, and highly entertaining whilst also being a none-too-subtle call to action. The film was worth watching just to see Meryl Streep strut her stuff with utter joyous bravado.

Maggie Gyllenhaal’s The Lost Daughter, featuring Olivia Coleman and Ed Harris, is a very human look at the cost of motherhood. It’s a beautifully made film with exquisite performances – but probably won’t make the cut as Best Picture.

For me, The Power of the Dog is a film I admire but I wouldn’t go out of my way to watch it a second time. It has some standout performances, and for me the highlight was Jonny Greenwood’s amazing score. Bing a longtime Radiohead fan, I really hope he gets the Oscar for it, although Hans Zimmer probably will for Dune.

Dune will probably take out the major craft awards.

Being the Ricardos was a tour de force for Nicole Kidman and also Javier Bardem – and I really hope Nicole gets the gong. Although the momentum seems to be going for Jessica Chastain, for The Eyes of Tammy Faye.

The best film of the year for me though was undoubtedly Drive My Car – a 3hr Japanese film based on a Murakami short story. It’s slow and it centres around the staging of a Chekhov play, so you can’t really say that it’s an immediately accessible film, but if you sit back and let it wrap itself around you, you will be amply rewarded.

Okay, so here are my predictions. As I say, this year is wide open with so many outstanding movies and performances – but here goes:

Oh, and as with last year, I’m making my prediction of who I think will win but adding my personal preference as to who I think should win!

Best Picture
BB: Drive My Car

Best Director
Jane Campion / The Power of the Dog
BB: Denis Villeneuve / Dune

Best Actor
Will Smith / King Richard
BB: Benedict Cumberbatch / The Power of the Dog

Best Actress
Nicole Kidman / Being the Ricardos
BB: Nicole Kidman / Being the Ricardos

Best Supporting Actor
Troy Kotsur / CODA
BB: Troy Kotsur / CODA

Best Supporting Actress
Ariana DeBose / West Side Story
BB: Kirsten Dunst / The Power of the Dog

Best Original Screenplay
Kenneth Branagh / Belfast
BB: Adam McKay / Don’t Look Up

Best Adapted Screenplay
Jane Campion / The Power of the Dog
BB: Ryusuke Hamaguchi / Drive My Car

Best International Film
Drive My Car
BB: Drive My Car

Best Cinematography
Greig Fraser / Dune
BB: Greig Fraser / Dune

Best Film Editing
BB: Dune

Best Sound Mixing:
BB: The Power of the Dog

Best Production Design
BB: Dune

Visual Effects
BB: Dune

Original Score
Dune / Hans Zimmer
BB: Power of the Dog / Jonny Greenwood

Original Song
No Time to Die / No Time to Die
BB: No Time to Die / No Time to Die

Best Costume Design
BB: Dune

Best Makeup & Hair
BB: Dune

Best Documentary
Summer of Soul
BB: The Rescue I (Not nominated)

Best Animated Feature
BB: Encanto

So on Sunday night US time, Monday Australian time, we’ll know the results. We’ll find out whether Netflix has finally got a Best Picture film in its library (The Power of the Dog), or whether Apple TV+ has done it with CODA. Or maybe some other film…

Whatever the result, I finish off by saying that it’s an absolute insult to the industry and to the brilliant crafts-people working in film that the Academy has chosen not to screen the award presentations to the categories such as music composition, editing, sound, production design, wardrobe etc… These aren’t deemed “sexy” enough to make prime time hey? Well try making a film without an editor, without a sound designer, without a production designer.

It’s shameful….

My Intuitive Glasses ~

At the moment I’m editing in Sydney (my new Facing Fear film) – and coming back to Mudgee on the weekends.

Last week, as I was about to leave home, I looked over at my spare reading glasses and I got a strong intuitive PGS hit that I should take these glasses with me.

Just to explain: I need glasses to read.
I can’t read without my glasses now.
I simply can’t.

But I went nah. I don’t need to take a spare pair of glasses. I have my main pair, which I love, and that’s enough. So I left home without taking my spare pair of glasses.


I lost my glasses.
I could not find them anywhere.
I’d been watching telly with my son at his place, I’d settled down to read before I went to sleep, and I could not find my glasses anywhere.

I turned the place upside down. I searched everywhere. It was crazy. I’d brought them into the house. They had to be somewhere. But do you think I could find them?

I found them, finally.
They’d slipped under a sofa.
It took me over an hour to find them.

While searching I kept thinking I should have brought my back-up pair.


Next day, I’m in the editing suite with Rishi, my editor.
I needed to read a script I’d written.
I needed my glasses.
I couldn’t find them. Again.

To put this into context. I never lose my glasses.
Like, never.
And I’d now lost them twice in two days.
(yeah yeah, I know, I found them the previous night)

Again, I searched everywhere. Rishi searched everywhere. I called my son, who was working from home, and asked him to look for them.

He searched everywhere.
My bedroom, the kitchen, even where I’d parked.
No sign of the glasses.

I searched the car. Maybe they’d slipped down the side of the seat. Rishi came out and helped me. Judith, a friend who’d stopped by, searched too. None of us could find the glasses.

I was facing the prospect of five days where I couldn’t read – or indeed write because I needed my glasses for writing too.

If only I’d brought my spare back-up glasses.

Several hours later, Rishi came into the editing room proudly brandishing my glasses. Evidently they’d slipped out of my pocket while I was walking along a laneway from the carpark to the entrance to the editing facility.

A tradesman had picked them up and very kindly dropped them at the reception desk of the editing facility – Rishi had seen them there and had figured they were mine.

So I got my glasses back. And fortunately no one had driven up that laneway and driven over my glasses – and indeed they were completely undamaged.


The way I see it, my intuition (my PGS – Personal Guidance System) – had told me I should take my spare reading glasses to Sydney.

I ignored that advice.

So then my PGS manoevered circumstances so that I would wish that I’d listened to the advice and acted upon it. For me, it was a reminder that I should not ignore my intuition.

It was a lesson.

You might not agree. You might think I’m a loon.

Watch my movie – PGS Intuition is your Personal Guidance System. It’s now on iTunes and Google Play worldwide. Watch that and you might see things a little differently.

The Books I read this year ~

I read a lot. Probably about 2hrs a day. Or more. And by “read” I mean books, not social media or news. Add another few hours for that!

I mostly read fiction – between the hours of 2:30am and 4:30-5:30am.

I’m a slow reader. I like to savour each word, and often I will re-read passages to fully understand how the writer has done it – made me feel or think a particular way.

I read on a Kindle. Much as I miss the tactile sensation of reading a book-book, I like to be able to adjust the font size on an e-book. And I can read at odd hours and not need the light on, which would wake Jennifer.

Plus I like the percentage-read function on my Kindle. From a technical viewpoint it enables me to understand the way the writer has structured the material.

Reading for me is both a joy, but also tutelage.

This year I discovered two great writers – Ursula K Le Guin, and Hanuki Murakami.

The two best books I read were Le Guin’s The Left Hand of Darkness and Murakami’s 1Q84, a series of three books in fact.

In the spiritual realm, Paul Selig’s continuing series of channeled work, Alchemy and The Kingdom from the Beyond the Known trilogy once again deeply affected the way I see the world, and my place and function in it.

As you will see from the list below, my taste in material varies widely. I am a big fan of Stephen King, and yet I gobbled down Ursula K Le Guin’s Tales from EarthSea series of six books – not exactly light reading.

So here’s my list, roughly in chronological order from the beginning of the year:

Books I’ve Read / 2021

Where the Crawdads Sing – Delia Owens 👍👍👍👍

Die Trying – Lee Child 👍👍👍

The Suspect – Michael Robotham 👍👍👍

The Celestine Prophecy – James Redfield 👍👍👍

The Alchemist (re-read)- Paulo Coehelo 👍👍👍👍

The Kingdom – Jo Nesbo 👍👍

Jonathan Livingstone Seagull (re-read) – 👍👍👍👍

The Cosmic Fire – Alice Bailey 👍👍👍

The LightWorkers Companion (re-read) – Amanda Guggenheimer 👍👍👍👍

AWE The Automatic Writing Experience – Michael Sandler 👍👍👍👍

The Six Books from EarthSea – Ursula K le Guin 👍👍👍👍

The Left Hand of Darkness – Ursula K le Guin 👍👍👍👍

Mistborn – Brandon Sanderson 👍👍👍

The Well of Ascension – Brandon Sanderson 👍👍👍

The Hero of Ages – Brandon Sanderson 👍👍👍

Billy Summers – Stephen King 👍👍

The Consciousness of the Atom (re-read) – Alice Bailey 👍👍👍

Saint Germain on Alchemy (re-read) – Mark L Prophet & Elizabeth Clare Prophet 👍👍👍

The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway – 👍👍👍👍

The Old Man and the Sea (re-read) – Ernest Hemingway 👍👍👍👍

To a God Unknown (re-read)- John Steinbeck 👍👍👍👍

The Pearl (re-read) – John Steinbeck 👍👍👍👍

The Convoluted Universe Bk1 (re-read)- Dolores Cannon 👍👍👍👍

Later – Stephen King 👍👍

The Woman in the Window – AJ Finn 👍

The Flight Attendant- Chris Bojhalian 👍👍👍

Intimate Conversations with the Divine – Caroline Myss 👍👍👍👍

The Paris Crime Files – Pierre Lamaitre 👍👍👍

In the Woods -Tana French 👍👍

The Searcher – Tana French👍👍

Beyond the Known: Realization – Paul Selig 👍👍👍👍

Beyond the Known: Alchemy – Paul Selig 👍👍👍👍

The Interior Castle – St Teresa of Avila 👍👍👍

Between Death and Life -Dolores Cannon 👍👍👍👍

Divine Healing of Mind and Body – Murdo MacDonald-Bayne 👍👍

Dowsing – The Ultimate Guide for the 21st Century – Elizabeth Brown 👍👍👍

If It Bleeds – Stephen King 👍👍👍

Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu / Ursula Le Guin 👍👍👍👍

Tuesdays with Morrie – Mitch Albom 👍👍👍

Kafka on the Shore – Haruki Murakami 👍👍👍👍

1Q84 Bks 1 & 2 – Haruki Murakami 👍👍👍👍

1Q84 Bk 3 – Haruki Murakami 👍👍👍👍

Killing Commendtore – Hanuki Murakami 👍👍👍👍

The Lefthand of Darkness – Ursula K Le Guin

The TV I watched this year –

Given the stay-at-home nature of this year, Jennifer and I watched a lot of telly. Some of it was exceptional, some execrable .

Apart from the shows listed below, I watched a lot of sport:

  • Swannies. Watched every game of my beloved Australian Rules team. They didn’t make the Grand Final but they played hard honest footy.
  • Cricket. Watched pretty much every game Australia played, including all the games in our amazing T20 World Cup win. (not a big fan of the Big Bash). The Ashes have been required watching.
  • Formula1 Grand Prix. Watched every Practice session, every Qualifying session, and every race of this year’s F1 season. Hamilton was robbed by the Race Director in the final race. He should be 8 times World champ.
  • Liverpool. Watched pretty much every match of Jurgen Klopp’s team of stars. My son Clancy is a die-hard fan and we share this. Salah is poetry in motion. A joy to watch. Still can’t wrap my head around the off-side rule though!

So that’s the sport I watched.

Jennifer is a cricket tragic, even more so than me – so she watched all the cricket with me. She also watched all the Swannies games, more out of loyalty to me than the team.

She doesn’t get F1 at all and is still confused/shocked/in-denial that I have taken such an obsessive hold on the sport. She thinks it’s boring and stupid, and tells me so regularly.

So that leaves the shows!

Standout shows for me were: Succession, Squid Game, The Expanse, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, (a late discovery, I know!) and the reality show, Alone.

I haven’t yet seen the 2nd season of The Great, but if it’s anything like the first season then it’ll be up there too.

So here is my list, with my rankings. I’m sure you’ll disagree, but let’s all agree that we’re living through an age of magnificent storytelling on telly!

Fauda – Netflix 👍👍👍👍

Tehran – Apple+ 👎

The Flight Attendant. – Binge 👍👍

Surviving Death – Netflix 👍 👎

Trust – Binge 👍👍

Your Honor- Stan 👎

Vast of Night (m) – Amazon Prime 👍👍

The Magicians – Amazon 👍👍

Servant – Apple+ 👍👍

The Sinner S3 Prime 👍

Baptiste – iView 👍👍

The Missing -iView 👍👍👍

Lovecraft Country – Binge 👎

Call my Agent S1 S2 S3 – Netflix 👍👍👍

The Stand – Amazon👎👎👎

Liar – Stan 👍

One of Us – Stan 👎

Behind Her Eyes – Netflix 👍

News of the World (m) – Netflix 👍👍

Losing Alice – Apple+ 👍👍👍

I Care a Lot (m) – Amazon 👎

WandaVision – Disney+ 👍👎

Allen vs Farrow – Binge 👍👍

The Crown S4 – Netflix 👍👍👍

Emily in Paris – Netflix 👎👎

Undercover – Netflix 👍

The Lady and the Dale – Binge 👍👍👍

Formula 1 / Drive to Survive – Netflix 👍👍👍👍

The Cecil Hotel – Netflix 👍👍

My Octopus Teacher (m)- Netflix 👍👍👍👍

Time (m) – Amazon 👍👍👍

The Serpent – Netflix – 👎👎

Worn Stories – Netflix 👎👎

Capitani- Netflix- 👍

Them – Amazon Prime – 👍👍

Shadow & Bone – Netflix 👍👍

The Woods – Netflix 👍

Riviera – SBS 👎

Marcella – Netflix 👎

His Dark Materials (S2) – Binge 👍👍👍

Mythic Quest S1 – Apple TV+ 👍👍👍

Deepwater Fell – SBS Demand 👍👎

Halston – Netflix 👍👍

SkyRojo – Netflix 👎👎

Woman in the Window (m) – Netflix 👎

Nomadland m – Disney+ 👍👍👍👍

Mr Mercedes S1 – SBS 👍👍

Le Innocente – Netflix 👍👎

Mare of Easttown – Binge 👍👍

1971 – Apple+ 👍

Ragarnok – Netflix 👍👍👍

Sweet Tooth- Netflix 👍👍👍

Trying – S1S2 Apple+ 👍👍

Katla – Netflix 👍👍👍

Physical – Apple+ 👍👍

Barry – Binge 👍👍👍

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia S2 S3 S4 S5 S6 S7 – iTunes 👍👍👍👍

Lisey’s Story – Apple 👎👎

Mr Mercedes S2 – SBS 👍👍👍

The Witcher S1 – Netflix 👍👍

Love Robots + Sex – Netflix 👍👍👍

Mythic Quest S2 – Apple+👍👍👍

Sophie Murder West Cork – Netflix👍👍

Trying S2 – Apple+ 👍👍

Hacks – Stan 👍👍👍👍

White Lotus – Binge 👍👍👍

The Gift – Netflix 👍👍👍

Clickbait -Netflix 👍

The Chair – Netflix 👍

Alone S1 S2 S3 S4 – SBS on Demand 👍👍👍👍

Always Sunny in Philadelphia S8 S9 S10 S11 S12 – iTunes 👍👍👍👍

The Expanse S1 S2 – Amazon 👍👍👍👍

Count Me In (m) – Netflix 👍👍

Schumacher (m) – Netflix 👍👍👍

Midnight Mass – Netflix 👍👎

The Expanse S3 – Amazon 👍👍👍👍

Echo Canyon (m) – Netflix 👍

Maid – Netflix 👍👍

Squid Game – Netflix 👍👍👍👍

Alone S5, S6, S7- SBS on Demand 👍👍👍

Alone S8 – Binge 👍👍👍

Ted Lasso S2 – Apple+ 👍👎

Only Murders in the Building – Disney+/Star 👍👍👍

You S3 – Netflix 👍👍👍👍

Power of the Dog (m)- Netflix 👍👍👍👍

Succession – Binge 👍👍👍👍

End of year audit & hopes for 2022

As readers of this blog know, each year around this time I do an an “audit” of what I achieved this year pegged against what I hoped to achieve this time last year.

Before I go into that though – this year has been another year of staying at home, hunkering down, focusing on staying safe and keeping productive.

I have to say, Jennifer and I have really enjoyed not traveling. Prior to the pandemic, we averaged three to four trips a year overseas. Since late January 2019 we haven’t stepped onto a plane – and it’s been glorious. I don’t miss traveling one jot – I do though miss seeing our friends in various countries around the world. That I miss.

For me, this year has been spent writing and reading and watching telly. Oh, and exercising.

In separate blogs I’m going to post what I watched, and my ratings for each show or movie (on telly) – and what books I read. Just to say though that this year I discovered the work of two truly great authors – Ursula K Le Guin, and Haruki Murakami. Yes, I know, they’ve been around yonks – in fact Ursula Le Guin is dead – but I’ve been bowled over by their writing.

So, here we go… the audit of what I set out to achieve, and what I actually achieved:

  • Complete Facing Fear – The Movie.(This will depend on Covid related restrictions, and I don’t know if it will be possible.)
    No, I didn’t complete the film because of COVID, but I have started editing and I hope to have the film finished by midway through next year, for release in September.
  • Set up KISS OR KILL as a limited TV series.
    No, it isn’t yet set up but I wrote the screenplay for the first episode and detailed treatments for the remaining seven episodes. Several major tv production companies are considering it at the moment. Separate to that though, I have been approached by two producers to do a US remake of the film, and those discussions are now in progress.
  • Set up The Way, My Way as a limited TV series.
    No, this hasn’t happened either. I decided to keep it as a feature film and wrote several drafts of the screenplay which my Australian distributor and US based sales agent feel is good enough to send out to cast. We’ll be shooting this movie in Spain in April/May 2023.
  • Write the screenplay for an alien-based comedy.
    Yes, I did that. I did about ten drafts of the screenplay. It’s called Small Town Alien and it’s on the runway too!
  • Write another novel.
    Yes, I did that too and it’s called The Golden Bridge. It’s 70K words and it will be published next year. It’s about a man who leaves home on the day of his wife’s funeral and heads off into the desert. He’s a structural engineer and he comes to believe that he can be reunited with his wife if he builds a golden bridge of light.

So – that’s what I said I’d do a year ago, and that’s my scorecard for the year.

Apart from that I wrote the screenplay and treatment for the TV adaptation of my YA trilogy Palace of Fires, and that’s currently being considered by one of the major streamers OS.

On a personal level, I rediscovered my love of classical music. I used to listen to classical music avidly when I was younger, and have now returned to it. Seiji Ozawa’s rendition of Swan Lake with the Boston Symphony Orchestra is transcendent. As is Rachmaninoff’s 2nd Piano Concerto by Van Cliburn.

I also discovered Formula One motor racing, thanks to the Netflix series Drive to Survive and have become an obsessive fan. I’ve watched every practice session, every qualifying session and every race this year. I’m jumping out of my skin with excitement about tonight’s final race between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen. It should be a cracker. I really hope Hamilton wins, and becomes eight times world champ.

What do I hope to achieve in 2022?

  • Complete Facing Fear – The Movie.
  • Secure the financing for The Way, My Way.
  • Set up Kiss or Kill as a feature film remake in the US.
  • Set up Palace of Fires as a limited TV series in the US.
  • Write another novel – a thriller this time.

2022 will also be Jennifer and my 40th wedding anniversary.
That’ll be spesh.

Intuition yesterday at Woolies ~

I drove into the Woolies carpark – Saturday 11:15am. Peak time.

The carpark was chockers. Not a space anywhere. Plus I had five cars ahead of me cruising to pounce on a spot.

I was anxious. Because at midday I was to be interviewed on a major US podcast show. Mentors & Moguls, by Heather Stone. I wasn’t sure which category I fitted into – whether I was a mentor or a mogul. But whatever – it was an important podcast, I didn’t want to be late and I had to do the week’s shopping.

But first, I had to find a park, and there was nothing free.

So I went into my PGS mode – I put out the intention that I would find the perfect parking spot, and I would find it quickly.

So I drove slowly behind the line of five cars, and as I passed each row of cars I saw that there were no free spaces to be had in any of these rows, and no one was walking to a car from Woolies about to hop in and drive off. There was no movement at all.

So here’s what I did – I turned into the row that was closest to the entrance to Woolies. The row that would provide me the ideal parking spot. But the row was completely full, and there was no one in their vehicle about to pull out.

The cars in front of me kept going – they saw too that the row was full. They kept cruising. But I drove into this completely full row. I drove towards the entrance – to the end of the row. The closer I got to the end of the row, and to the entrance to the shopping centre, the more perfect the parking spot would be – but it was full.

And then I saw taillights turn red. Someone was in a car in the most perfect spot possible. And then their reverse lights came on. And then they slowly backed out, providing me the parking spot that I wanted – the ideal parking spot right by the front entrance.

I waited for the elderly lady to back out and then I drove in – and as I was parking I saw the line of five cruising cars drive slowly past – each driver glaring at me with undisguised hostility.

Or it could have been envy.

Anyway, what happened? I set my intention, I trusted and I held my belief even when it seemed impossible.

Coincidence, you might say.
I’ll say in response that yes, it might be coincidence if this happens randomly, but this now happens to me all the time. I’m serious. Anyone who has driven with me will verify this.

You know what the trick to it is?
You have to ask.
Most people don’t ask – so they don’t get.

And then you have to

Watch my movie PGS – Intuition is your Personal Guidance System. It’s out now on iTunes and Google Play. Or you can read my book: PGS the Book on Amazon.

We’re coming up to Christmas. We’re going to be shopping – parking.
Try it.
It works!

The Golden Bridge ~

I’ve been writing a new book. A novel, called The Golden Bridge.

I’m almost finished.

It’s about a man who leaves home the day of his wife’s funeral, and instead of going to the funeral he decides to take a long walk. He ditches his phone, his wallet with all his credit cards and ID, his GPS watch – he rids himself of his identity.

During the walk into the heart of the country he meets various people and undergoes a fundamental change. We learn during the walk that he’s killed his wife.

The book will be published early next year.

Here’s an excerpt:

He felt like he was in a box, a smoke-filled box, and he’d lived his entire life in this box, and he knew nothing other than what existed in the box. That was his world. That’s what he knew and that’s all he knew. But tonight someone had punched a hole in the top of the box and let a shaft of light in, and for the first time in his life he was aware that there was more than just the box. There was a world outside the box. A bigger larger world where there was light, and mystery, and beauty in the mystery. He wanted to step into that shaft of light. More than anything, he wanted to step into that light. But where did that light come from? And who punched the hole in the top of the box? The punch had come from outside the box. Outside the world he knew. Who or what did that? And why? And why now? Here, tonight? 

Let me know if this novel might interest you!