A freelance writer and copywriter for over fifteen years, Helene has written for publications and brands all over the world and couldn’t imagine herself in any other job. A shameless film freak, her first onscreen experience involved a trip to Avondale’s Hollywood Theatre at the age of five to see Yul Brynner in The Ultimate Warrior and she hasn’t looked back since. A big fan of documentaries, she has interviewed subjects as diverse as Henry Rollins, Jimmy Choo and Beyonce Knowles, and also has her own beauty blog - which can be found at www.mshelene.com - for the purpose of raving about red lipstick, big hair and other essential indulgences.

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Film Fess by Helene Ravlich

25 Latest News Articles

The ‘Last Dance’ for a first time director

Posted on Friday 5/09/2014 September, 2014 by Rialto Admin


Actress Julia Blake and Last Dance director David Pulbrook. 

Showing right now on Rialto, Australian film
 ‘Last Dance’ could be termed merely a damn great thriller, but I (and many others) believe that it's something much more than that. Highly topical in light of current happenings at several conflict spots around the globe, it’s also a film about tolerance and forgiveness, the unspeakable effects of religious and racial hatred and the power of kindness and basic humanity to change lives.

Last Passenger, first time director

Posted on Wednesday 27/08/2014 August, 2014 by Rialto Admin


In the feature film ‘Last Passenger’ (showing this week on Rialto Channel) Lewis Shaler (a weary-looking Dougray Scott) is a doctor and solo dad heading home with his young son Max (Joshua Kaynama) on a late night train from London. In true cinematic fashion, Max accidentally causes fellow passenger Sarah Barwell (a pixie-ish Kara Tointon) to spill coffee on her coat, prompting Shaler to apologize to Barwell. The interaction is the beginning of a romantic connection between the two.

Later, while the train is stationary, Shaler notices an unidentifiable man tampering with the train's brakes. As the train begins to move again the plot thickens - he sees another man crawling across the tracks and on investigation, Shaler discovers the conductor has vanished…

Rialto Natural Selection

Posted on Wednesday 20/08/2014 August, 2014 by Rialto Admin



“You can choose your friends but you sho' can't choose your family, an' they're still kin to you no matter whether you acknowledge 'em or not, and it makes you look right silly when you don't.
”  ― Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

In my family tree I have (in no particular order) a partisan, a French gambling whiz who reportedly broke the bank at Monte Carlo and various circus folk - all of which appear very glamorous/fascinating in hindsight, but were probably serious trouble in their day! It is most definitely true that you can choose your friends but you can’t choose your family, and generations of feuds (Cain and Abel, anyone?), embarrassments and hell raisers just go to show that’s not going to change in a hurry.

Behind the mask

Posted on Wednesday 13/08/2014 August, 2014 by Rialto Admin


“The virtue of wrestling is that it is the spectacle of excess,” French theorist Roland Barthes, ‘Mythologies’

When I lived in Mexico many years ago, one of my favourite pastimes was a weekly visit to the wrestling ring. In the seaside town I was living in ‘Lucha Libre’ was king, and attending masked wrestling matches in Mexico City completely blew my mind. The strength, the theatricality and the passion of the audience were absolutely unfathomable to me previously; it truly was great spectacle at its best.

A spotlight on the game of champions

Posted on Monday 4/08/2014 August, 2014 by Rialto Admin


“Chess is life.”  -  Bobby Fischer

I was one of the lucky people who got to see New Zealand film ‘The Dark Horse’ debut at the NZIFF a couple of weeks ago, its first public outing and a night that ensured its future as a Great Kiwi Film. Everyone in the house was moved, buoyed and impressed by the tale of Maori chess Genesis Potini, and the work he did with underprivileged and challenged youth in his own hometown.

Rialto Beatlemania

Posted on Wednesday 30/07/2014 July, 2014 by Rialto Admin



They emerged as smiley faced mop tops and conquered the world, but it was when The Beatles got all freaky that I think they really came into their own. It was also the moment that George Harrison - AKA ‘the quiet Beatle’ - really made his presence felt, and established his status as perhaps the coolest and most progressive thinking of the lot.

The documentary “George Harrison: Living in the Material World”  - directed by Martin Scorcese and showing now on Rialto - has been polarising for fans of the man and the band, but I love that fact that it has at its heart his dedication to Eastern thought and the power of meditation.

Let’s hear it for the girls

Posted on Thursday 24/07/2014 July, 2014 by Melanie Curry-Irons


When I was growing up - in the era before the Internet encouraged us all to share exactly what/who we were eating/doing at any given time - female celebrities were quite a different bunch. The young female role models I looked up to were quirky, cool and fiercely independent, and the most outrageous stunt you could pull was to pop a couple of sleeping pills and rip off your local Marc Jacobs store (Free Winona!).

Rialto Film Fess: The Hollywood meltdown effect

Posted on Thursday 17/07/2014 July, 2014 by Rialto Admin



Poor old Shia LaBeouf 
 - from promising, seriously talented actor to plagiarising, homeless person harassing, booze-addled freak in little more than year or two. How did it all go so wrong?

One could point first of all to child star syndrome (see also: Lohan, Lindsay and Beiber, Justin), an unfortunate affliction that has claimed many with very few success stories bar the charming Ms. Drew Barrymore, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Neil Patrick Harris. We love those three though, and have loved watching them increase in talent a

Fights and men in tights: the joy of the superhero flick

Posted on Thursday 10/07/2014 July, 2014 by Rialto Admin



Superhero flicks are most definitely a polarising genre - you either love them for their mix of the dark and cheesy (when they’re good) or you dismiss then just minutes in as preposterous, overblown, fantastical nonsense (when they’re bad).

We all identify with a particular superhero at heart though, and you’ll be hard pressed to find someone who hasn't fantasised about what super powers they’d like to possess at one stage, or entertained the idea of owning a dress up box for the moments when you have a crisis and  need some super human strength or when that perilously flat-lining relationship needs spicing up.

Music Documentaries. Stories Through Music.

Posted on Thursday 3/07/2014 July, 2014 by


Last year’s exceptional - and not unexpected - choice of ‘Searching For Sugarman’ as the Oscar Academy’s Best Documentary Feature reinforced what many of us music fans have been saying for years: we are living in the Golden Age of the music film.  With the unmissable backing singers documentary ‘20 Feet From Stardom’ up for the same award and the Coen brothers’ ’60s New York folk scene period drama ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ also nominated, we are spoiled for choice. To say that there are literally scores of great music documentaries making the rounds right now would be an understatement - and even if the genre is not always your bag, the subject matter can still be utterly compelling.

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