Give me a Break is a 4 x 30 minute series. In each episode a “breaker” is given the chance to change their life by experiencing a job they’ve dreamed about under the watchful eye of a mentor. Does the reality live up to their expectations? Have our breakers got what it takes to make the grade?
17 year old school girl Renae Simpson lives in Mt Magnet, a mining town hundreds of kilometres away from Perth. She wants to be a famous actress, and, as she puts it, “be on the cover of Woman’s Day”. Over 2 weeks Renae is immersed in drama school with mentor Rick Brayford. She’s never acted before and has to learn fast. In a fortnight she’s up on stage performing live to a large audience. Has she got what it takes?
Director: Peter Pritchard | Director Of Photography: Greg Pollock | Editor: Lawrie Silvestrin
Twenty eight year old paraplegic policy officer Mallika Macleod is passionate about cooking. She wants to be a chef. She has just two weeks to prove that she has the culinary talents and physical capacity to make it in the pressurised environment of a high quality commercial kitchen. Mentor Adrian Tobin gives Mallika her break, An award-winning chef who oversees one of the largest kitchens in Western Australia. Adrian, is a tough task master as he puts Mallika through a 2 week crash course in fine cusine. Will she succeed?
Director: Steve Peddie | Director Of Photography: Ian Batt | Editor: Peter Pritchard
Twenty-eight year old barman Dave Feighan is at a dead end. He wants to turn his life around and explore his passion - real estate. For 2 weeks Dave is mentored by real estate guru Terry Hardie and immersed in the cut throat world of buying and selling property. Can Terry turn Dave from burnt out barman to real estate whiz?
Director: Britt Arthur | Director Of Photography: Ian Batt | Editor: Lawrie Silvestrin
For 15 years, 42 year old Liz has been a road worker, driving big rollers in the outback. Seeking a life change, she wants to work with animals. For 2 weeks animal loving Liz is given the chance to try one of the toughest jobs in animal welfare - an RSPCA inspector. Under the guidance of her mentor, Inspector Myra, Liz comes face to face with distressed animals and their difficult owners. Does her expectation live up to the tough reality?
Director: Paulo Alberton | Director Of Photography: Ian Puglsey ACS | Editor: Peter Pritchard
"We welcome the return of the impeccable Who Do You Think You Are?"
"A documentary that confronts, questions and raises many issues:medical ethics,personal choice and funding priorities - but none more so than the rights of the disabled, and of a mother and father."
"… is full of emotion,heartache,frustration and determination."
"… essentially a story of courage"
‘The filmmaker creates a perceptive, multilayered understanding of the young refugees’ experiences’
‘It is hard to remain dry-eyed as the schools multicultural soccer team sings Advance Australia Fair in the bus home from a match.'
"... already acknowledged as the world's most exciting visual and physical theatre company...the reason to go and see Stalker is the way they marry jaw dropping spectacle with real purpose."
"This is engaging and entertaining telly that also has something important to say"
"Set in WA, this is one reality series we all should watch."
"Setting this documentary apart…is the effort it makes to humanise the poachers and explain the circumstances which compels them to hunt."
"A dose of Reality TV without the hype"
"All three groups of fishermen feature in Lobster Tales, an ABC documentary that will change the way you look at these delicious crustaceans forever."
“The great achievement of Lobster Tales, a delightfully oddball WA-made documentary on the lucrative local crayfish industry ... strikes such a lovely balance between the lobsters and fishermen that it’s more like a well-wrought tragi-comedy than a traditional nature doco"
“Even for non-lobster-lovers, this quirky feature provides plenty of interest ... the highlight is the underwater photography by Leighton de Barros which is up-close and stunning."
"shows ordinary people doing extraordinary things ... the program usues the magic of TV to bring an important WA story to life"
“Though it’s not easy to watch a widow finally open up about her murdered husband (nor is it comfortable watching local Iraqis genuinely praise Saddam Hussein), Salam Father is yet another reason why the terms "SBS" and "quality documentary" fit like a hand in glove."
“A sense of reconciliation emerges in the program and there's considerable poignancy as elements of a family torn apart by war, politics and circumstance are reunited…"
“This is the compelling story of a family torn apart by war, envy, corruption and greed and how a quest for answers also helped heal old wounds. It might also help people look beyond the descriptions "refugee" and "asylum seeker" to see the person and their story…A powerful piece of television, made more authentic by Ziusudras' first-hand narration of this tale.”
"This documentary never becomes bogged down in legalese and is a compelling tale of one family's devotion to their son"
"A remarkable story and a clever and affecting piece of storytelling"
"An emotional journey...unflinchingly captured on camera"
Koori queens proudly get out and about in this high-spirited and affirming documentary."
"We get a rare glimpse into the world of indigenous gay men in tonight's Sissy ... an energetic, inventive and occasionally touching Western Australian-made documentary that looks at the lives of three colourful drag queens."
"Considering the double whammy served up by homophobia and racism, Sissy insists on having a good time while handling thought-provoking material."
[Shaun Micallef’s] quest to discover if there is ‘‘greater purpose than being a semi-professional Australian TV personality’’ makes for a funny and watchable journey.
Filled with wit, warmth and revelations, Stairway To Heaven will intrigue even non-believers.
"It's a compelling story and you made a compelling film out of it. Just terrific."
"A fascinating insight into the world of the night"
“Surprising, raunchy, hilarious, crazy! Expect the unexpected!”
"Puppetry most certainly is an art from and some of the performances here will take your breath away"
“I have been directly or indirectly involved in WDYTYA productions in the U.S., Canada and the U.K …I must say that this one [Andrew Denton's episode] of the very best I have seen”
"...it's the most engaging detective series in years"
"... surprising, extraordinary and often moving"
"A compelling, lovely adaption of an excellent British format"
"One of the reliable pleasures of this series is just how great it looks. The production values are always first-class and wherever we are in Australia or the world, you can't quibble with the scenery. Who Do You Think You Are? is about much more than looking pretty, though, blending history and biography to create a package that's accessible, entertaining and educational. (FOUR STARS)"
“It's the perfect mix of history and celebrity..."
"... this program has about it a quiet authenticity that allows the subject’s story to unfold of its own accord."
"The series is more than a peek into the backgrounds of the famous; it also chronicles the social and cultural evolution of our national identities via these celeb family histories. 4/5 stars"
"Each episode is essentially a feature documentary, well-researched and produced, and presented usually with a humorous or deeply emotional touch... This show is seriously habit-forming"
This series is fascinating and so well done...
(pick of the week)
"... explores the family histories of its subjects with class and humour. Verdict: A Hit."