As I said in my Jervis Bay post, we've had a few busy weekends in a row. The weekend after we returned from the south coast we had many things on - it was my birthday, and it was also the weekend of the Travelling Film Festival in Townsville, and we had our usual garden / house stuff to do.
I saw 5 films with the Travelling Film Festival (Andy saw 2 with me). My favourite of the weekend was easily Searching for Sugar Man, a really intriguing documentary about a musician I'd never heard of before, but wish I had. He was big in South Africa (what the film is about) and Australia, but was a total flop in the US. The first half of the film is dark and broody, but for the second half I couldn't really stop smiling because it was just so... uplifting. I really recommend this movie.
My second favourite was Moonrise Kingdom, a Wes Anderson film. I love his other work, and this one was similarly story-book quirky and just charming.
Paul Kelly: Stories of Me was a really interesting film about Australia's most prolific singer-songwriter. It was a little disjointed - more a biography than a narrative about something interesting, in the way that Sugar Man is.
Lore, a story about the children of an SS Officer right at the end of WWII who have to travel across Germany, and end up travelling with a Jewish man leaving a concentration camp, was heavy and thought-provoking and interesting. It was no light film, but it was worthwhile.
Chinese Takeaway was really sweet - a comedic look at some serious subject matter, but I was taken aback by the way that many people in the audience laughed uproariously at bits that I thought were more sad than funny. That aside, the film was really gorgeous.
In between the films, I had a friend over for dinner on Saturday evening. Then on Sunday (my actual birthday) I had a couple of people over before we went to see Paul Kelly and Chinese Takeaway. Since the films started at 6.30pm, I thought some heartier food was in order. So I made a batch of focaccia, with tomatoes and basil and garlic on top.
And of course some cake. Or rather, macadamia blondies. This is the recipe from Vegan with a Vengeance.
The recipe had a topping involving maple syrup and more macadamias, but I decided to go for a simple salted caramel topping instead. Baked on the blondies for the last 10 minutes, it was a little sticky-sweet without being overly messy.
These, plus some mojitos, made a great Sunday afternoon with friends. So even though the weekend was busy, it was all fun stuff!