12 Films to see at NZIFF 2016

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Jun 292016


As per usual, the New Zealand International Film Festival is absolutely packed with an amazing variety of fantastic films. I have been lucky enough to see a fair amount of the films showing, so I’ve gone through the programme and picked 12 films I think are worth adding to your festival schedule. Check them out after the jump.

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12 Films to See at Sydney Film Festival 2016

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May 152016


With 244 films screening, picking which films to see at the 2016 Sydney Film Festival can be an overwhelming experience. We’ve combed through the impressive programme and have selected 12 films we think are must-sees at this year’s festival. The films we have picked included Afghani cinefiles, a vampire-mermaid, an escape into virtual reality, and Daniel Radcliffe’s farting corpse.

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2016 Sydney Film Festival Programme Announced

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May 122016

The 2016 Sydney Film Festival programme has been announced and tickets are now on sale at the festival’s website.

In 2016 the Festival will present 244 films from 60 countries including 25 World Premieres. The festival has secured some titles direct from Cannes, including It’s Only The End Of The World, Aquarius and Psycho Raman. This year there is a focus on Ireland, a look at Korea, and a showcase of European Women filmmakers.

There is so much to digest! Check back in a couple of days for our picks for you must-sees at this year’s festival. Happy scheduling everyone!

Cannes 2016: Films We’re Excited For

 Festivals  Comments Off on Cannes 2016: Films We’re Excited For
May 102016


The 2016 addition of the Cannes Film Festival, arguably the World’s most prestigious festival, is about to kick off in France. This year there is an unusually high 21 films competing for the Palm d’Or, after Asghar Farhadi’s The Salesman was a late addition to the official competition. Outside of the official competition, films also screen in the Un Certain Regard section, as well as at a number of out of competition and special screenings.

With so much on, what is there to look out for? Well, we’ll be paying close attention to the reactions to the films listed after the jump.

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First Films Announced for Sydney Film Festival 2016

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Apr 062016


The 63rd Sydney Film Festival today announced 26 new films to be featured in this year’s 8-19 June event. These films are in addition to the Scorsese retrospective which was already announced.

Highlights from the 26 films announced are:

Demolition (Jean-Marc Vallée) – TIFF 2015 opening night film starring Jake Gyllenhaal as a Wall Street financier whose wife dies in a car accident. He’s left to pick up the pieces – or in this case, tear them apart. Also stars Naomi Watts and Chris Cooper.

Sunset Song (Terrance Davies) – An adaptation of the classic Scottish novel of the same name, Sunset Song centers around a Scottish farm worker (Agyness Deyn) who sees family trauma merge into global catastrophe as the first world war devastates her village.

From Afar (Lorenzo Vigas) – This début feature from writer-director Lorenzo Vigas won the 2015 Golden Lion (the highest prize) at the 2015 Venice Film Festival. Armando, a 50-year-old man, seeks young men in Caracas and pays them just for company. One day he meets Elder, a 17-year-old boy and that meeting changes their lives forever.

Morris From America (Chad Hartigan) – Follows an African-American teenager adjusting uneasily to his new life in Heidelberg, Germany. This has been on our watch list since the reactions from Sundance, where it won the Special Jury Prize & Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award.

No Home Movie (Chantal Akerman) – The late avant-garde Belgian filmmaker Chantal Akerman moving portrait of her relationship with her mother, a Polish immigrant and Auschwitz survivor. Akerman passed away last year.

A Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peacekeepers (Geeta Gandbhir, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy) -Follows a predominantly Muslim unit of 160 women police officers sent to post-earthquake Haiti as UN Peacekeepers for one year. Both directors will be attending the festival, with co-director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s Oscar-winning short A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness also screening.

Weiner (Josh Kriegman, Elyse Steinberg) – Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance 2016, the documentary follows former congressman Anthony Weiner in his attempt to overcome a sexting scandal and run for mayor of New York City – only to be felled, by another sexting scandal.
Full list of films announced

Features: Demolition, Maggie’s Plan, Everybody Wants Some!!, Sing Street, Sunset Song, The Commune, A Copy of My Mind, Angry Indian Goddesses, From Afar, Francofonia, A War, Mustang, Tharlo, The Devil’s Candy, Magallanes, Morris From America, Under the Shadow.

Documentaries: Weiner, A Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peacekeepers, A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (short), Sonita, Heart of a Dog, Janis: Little Girl Blue, Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected, Mr Gaga, No Home Movie.

Scorsese retrospective: Mean Streets, Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, Taxi Driver, New York, New York, Raging Bull, The King Of Comedy, Goodfellas, The Age Of Innocence, Casino, The Aviator

Full programme announced Wednesday 11 May.

2016 Alliance Française French Film Festival Line-up Announced

 Festivals, French Film Festival  Comments Off on 2016 Alliance Française French Film Festival Line-up Announced
Feb 032016


The 2016 French Film Festival programme has been announced, and this year includes 42 contemporary features, one classic and a new programme strand that will showcase 5 of France’s premier television series.

Rosalie Blum, a comedy-drama from acclaimed screenwriter Julien Rappeneau, in his directorial début, has been selected as the Festival’s Opening Night film; while closing night will be a fully restored version of Jean-Luc Godard’s 1963 classic, Contempt (Le Mépris) starring the Brigitte Bardot at the height of her career.

Highlights from the programme include:

Dheepan – Director: Jacques Audiard
The winner of the Palm d’Or at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. It’s great to finally get the chance to see this in Australian. The film concerns  a former Tamil fighter who adopts the identity of a dead man and recruits a young woman and orphaned child to pose as his family, as he seeks a new life in France.

In the Shadow of Women (L’Ombre des femmes) – Director: Philippe Garrel
There are many hardcore Garrel fans out there, and I am sure they will be very excited to see his newest film at on the big screen. The focuses on the romantic and professional lives of documentary filmmakers, Pierre and
Manon, who are tested when the intoxication of infidelity threatens to overwhelm their existence.

The Wait (L’Attente) – Director: Piero Messina

I will see anything the gorgeous, talented Juliette Binoche is in! At a remote Sicilian villa, a mother (Binoche) welcomes a young woman (Lou de Laâge, who was so wonderful in Breathe) claiming to be the girlfriend of her absent son. But as the days pass and the two form a friendship, it becomes apparent that something is amiss.

We also like the look of The Measure of Man, Microbe & Gasoline, and Macdam Stories.
For the full programme, head over to the festival website


Festival Dates & Locations 

SYDNEY: 1-24 March Palace Norton Street, Palace Verona, Chauvel Cinema & Hayden Orpheum Picture Palace
CASULA: 7-10 April Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre
PARRAMATTA: 7-10 April Riverside Theatre
MELBOURNE: 2-24 March Palace Balwyn, Palace Brighton Bay, Palace Cinema Como, Palace Westgarth, The Kino Cinemas & The Astor Theatre
CANBERRA: 3-29 March Palace Electric Cinema
BRISBANE: 11 March – 3 April Palace Barracks & Palace Centro
PERTH: 16 March – 7 April Cinema Paradiso, Luna on SX & Windsor Cinema
ADELAIDE: 31 March – 24 April Palace Nova Eastend Cinemas
HOBART: 28 April – 4 May State Cinema


Jewish International Film Festival 2015

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Oct 062015

Son of Saul 1A

The Jewish International Film Festival is back for another year, with an impressive line-up of 60 feature films and documentaries. The festival will screen its full programme in Sydney and Melbourne, with a choice selection of titles playing Perth, Brisbane and Auckland.

Kicking of the festival in all locations is SON OF SAUL, the astonishing début from director László Nemes which took home 4 awards at the Cannes Film Festival, including the Grand Prix Prize (2nd prize). The film follows a father’s quest for moral redemption as he tries to salvage the body of a boy whom he believes to be his son, amidst the horrors of 1944 Auschwitz. Sure to be a challenging, but a rewarding watch.

Closing out the festival is SABENA HIJACKING – MY VERSION, a compelling docu-drama that revisits the 1972 hijacking of Belgian’s Sabena Flight 571 by four armed members of the Palestinian Black September terrorist organisation.

Other highlights include
A TALE OF LOVE AND DARKNESS – Natalie Portman’s directorial début, in which she also stars as Fania, a Holocaust survivor (and mother of Amos Oz, one of Israel’s best-known writers) who struggles with the horrors of the past, whilst facing the challenges of the present. Based on Oz’s best-selling memoir.

BY SIDNEY LUMET – In a never-before-seen interview recorded a few years before his death, legendary filmmaker Sidney Lumet guides us through his life and work – from his early years on the Yiddish stage to directing of some of cinema’s most enduring classics, including 12 Angry Men, Dog Day Afternoon, Serpico and Network.

FELIX AND MEIRA – Meira is a Hasidic wife and mother consumed by the strict rules of her society. Felix is an eccentric French-Canadian man mourning his wealthy father. When the two meet in a bakery, an unexpected friendship is born. It soon blossoms into something more as they open one another’s eyes to the possibilities that lie beyond their worlds. This film is Canada’s nominee for Best Foreign Language Film at the 2016 Academy Awards.

THE VOICE OF PEACE – A documentary about a pirate radio station based on
a ship in international waters off the coast of Tel Aviv which broadcast messages of peace and love, as well as great music, to millions across the Middle East and Europe. Fighter pilot turned political activist Abie Nathan was determined in his mission to bring Israelis and Arabs together in peace, and soon counted Bob Dylan, John Lennon, Yoko Ono,Johnny Mathis and The Carpenters among his supporters.

Festival dates & locations

SYDNEY: 28 October – 18 November, Event Cinemas, Bondi Junction
MELBOURNE: 4 – 29 November, Classic Cinemas, Elsternwick
PERTH: 31 October, 1 & 8 November, Event Cinemas, Morley
NEW ZEALAND: 15 & 22 November, Academy Cinemas, Auckland
BRISBANE: 21, 22 & 29 November, New Farm Cinemas

To view the full programme and ticket information, visit the official JIFF Website at: www.jiff.com.au

Six Film Festivals in Sydney this Spring

 Festivals  Comments Off on Six Film Festivals in Sydney this Spring
Aug 242015

tale of tales

The weather may be warming up in Sydney, but there are plenty of good reasons to stay inside in Spring. Travel the world, experience local filmmaking and its best, and broaden your views on life & love. Here’s our quick guide to 6 film festivals playing in Sydney this Spring.

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