Love (3D) – 2015 Sydney Underground Film Festival

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Sep 202015


This year’s Sydney Underground Film Festival Opening Night selection was the latest from controversial French filmmaker Gaspar Noe, presented, for the first time in the festival’s history, in the desired 3D format. Love premiered at the Cannes Film Festival earlier in the year and true to the filmmakers reputation (he’s the guy that made the brilliant but often-unwatchable Irreversible and Enter the Void), was met with mixed reactions. Mostly negative, unfairly. Having thought about the film for a day now I have continued to appreciate the boundary-pushing approach to an intensely-passionate sexual relationship, the uncomfortably candid but empathetic study of how co-dependence and toxic influence can be both orgasmic and destructive, and the film’s interesting and aesthetically successful use of 3D.

Not at all the 3D porno such an indulgence could have surrendered to being, it is actually a emotionally-charged drama about regret and despair – and the battle between enlightenment and disillusionment with the co-existence of love and sex. It is the story of a young man still trapped in the lingering whirlwind of an all-encompassing sexual relationship with the likely love of his life – and dealing with the fact that she has gone and accepting who he needs to be in the next chapter of his life. Continue reading »

Sydney Underground Film Festival 2015

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Aug 062015


Sydney’s weirdest and most wonderful four days of cinema mayhem is back for its 9th year, with the Sydney Underground Film Festival (SUFF) announcing their programme for the September 17th -20th festival, held at The Factory Theatre in Marrickville.

SUFF will screen over 100 films (comprised of features & shorts) sourced from the very best in subversive, experimental, and controversial cinema. With Australian premieres, retrospectives and Q&A screenings alongside masterclasses and special musical performances, it’s going to be a massive four days.

Sydney, get ready for a money shot in 3D!!! I mean, get ready for provocative art house director, Gasper Noe’s newest film, which premiered at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. LOVE is about exactly that, love. This controversial film is certainly an appropriate opener for a festival that prides itself on bringing controversial and challenging cinema to Sydney audiences.

Closing out SUFF this year will be Eli Roth’s latest thriller KNOCK KNOCK, starring no other than the enigmatic, Keanu Reeves.

In between LOVE and KNOCK KNOCK, there’s the festival favourite shorts like LOVE/SICK and REALITY BITES; a 5oth anniversary screening of the sexploitation classic FASTER, PUSSYCAT KILL! KILL!; the nest film from prolific Japanese director Takashi Miike, YAKUZA APOCALYPSE: THE GREAT WAR OF THE UNDERWORLD; and many more!

Head over to to check out the entire programme and to book your tickets

2014 Sydney Underground Film Festival

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Aug 022014


After a Pozible campaign successfully raised the $8500 that the festival needed, the Sydney Underground Film Festival is back for another crazy few days 4-7 September at The Factory Theatre in Marrackville.

Opening with New Zealand [comedy] horror Housbound and closing with out-there German film Wetlands, the festival packs a selection of bonkers, thought-provoking, edgy and interesting  features, shorts and docos in between.

The festival programs unique, quality independent films that transgress the status quo and challenge the conservative conventions of filmmaking. The festival is devoted to renewing local interest in independent and experimental film as part of an international underground film culture and aims to change an ingrained culture of cinematic complacency and revitalise an enthusiasm for cinema.

Highlights from the programme include

Super Duper Alice Cooper (Sam Dunn, Reginald Harkema, Scot McFadyen – 2014)
I love a good music doco and this one has a crazy subject, quite suitable for SUFF really. The documentary dissection of his crazy life matches the fame and frenzy that followed in his wake, sex, drugs and music is just the start of it.

Mr Leos caraX (Tessa Louise-Salomé – 2014)
The man behind Holy Motors! Of course I want to get an insight into the way he works. Featuring interviews with his former cast members and crew, reflections from critics, time spent with his favourite leading man, and audio of the elusive figure himself, Mr Leos caraX is the insight into his oeuvre befitting his awe-inspiring impact.

Teenage (Matt Wolf – 2013)
In a year that brought us Boyhood, Teenage is quite appropriate. This film focuses on the concept of a new generation and the culture that sprung up among those older than children, but not yet adults. “Teenagers.”A hypnotic rumination on the genesis of youth culture from the end of the 19th century to the first half of the 20th, Teenage is a living collage of rare archival material, filmed portraits, and diary entries read by Jena Malone, Ben Whishaw, and others.

What: The 8th Sydney Underground Film Festival
Where: The Factory Theatre, Marrackville
When: 4-7 September, 2014
Tickets & Full Programme:

Support the SUFF Pozible Campaign

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May 232014


The Sydney Underground Film Festival is one of my favourite festival experiences. The SUFF team bring together the weird, the wacky, the controversial, the erotic and the just plain crazy, for a festival quite like no other. SUFF is a non-for-profit festival, with all the funds going back into festival. This year they have launched a Pozible campaign to make sure the 2014 edition of the festival is the best yet.

From the SUFF team:

As the 2014 festival approaches, we are pretty darn motivated and excited about what the year has in store – but we are a not-for-profit endeavour. We work for the love of independent cinema, and we always seek to deliver the best festival we can. This year, we are asking for your assistance to do just that. This Pozible campaign will enable us create the greatest festival yet, and have a little more freedom than we are used to.

Last year at SUFF I saw one of the best films of the year (A Band Called Death), one of the weirdest films of my life (The Dance of Reality) and I had a great time drinking beers and chatting all things film with friends between sessions. I don’t usually push campaigns (there are just so many out there!) but I honestly think this is a worthy group to give some cash to.

Support the 2014 Sydney Underground Film Festival Pozible campaign here

SUFF Diary: Day 4

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Sep 132013

The final say of SUFF saw the temperature drop and Sydney and made me wish that there was a coffee cart at the festival (that’s my #1 wishlist item for next year). However since I had four films back-to-back, there wasn’t a lot of time out of the cinema. After the jump check out my thoughts on A Band Called Death, Unlawful Killing, The Final Member and The Canyons.

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SUFF Diary: Day 3

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Sep 092013


Saturday saw temperatures of almost 30C in Sydney, which was ideal for enjoying beers between films on day 3 of the Sydney Underground Film Festival. I caught three films on day 3 – Documentaries Unhung Hero and Adjust Your Tracking and Birdemic: Shock and Terror, which was accompanied by a game of ‘best worst movie bingo’. My thoughts on all 3 films, after the jump.

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SUFF Diary: Day 1 & Day 2

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Sep 072013

The Sydney Underground Film Festival is a fantastic event which brings weird, wonderful, challenging and sometimes controversial cinema to Sydney’s inner west. This year I plan on checking out 10 films + enjoying some of the food, drink and entertainment that comes along with the fest. I’ve decided to record my thoughts on the films and the festival in a 3-part diary – Days 1&2, Day 3 and Day 4. Check out the first entry after the jump.

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SUFF 2013 Programme Launched

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Aug 012013

The Sydney Underground Film Festival (SUFF) have launched their 2013 programme and tickets are now on sale. This year sees another fantastic mix of the weird and wacky, with even a Cannes title or two thrown in.

The festival opens with Alejandro Jodorowsky’s  and his long-awaited film (by long, we mean 23 years) The Dance of Reality, followed by a party, SUFF-styles. The jam-packed weekend of awesome will close on the Sunday evening with the Australian première of The Canyons, a slick, seething, sexually-charged ride through the minds of writer Bret Easton Ellis and director Paul Schrader.

Also playing at the festival, Drug-thriller Magic Magic starring Michael Cera, Emily Browning and Juno Temple; Harry Dean Stanton: Partly Fiction, a documentary on the character actor with more than 200 acting credits to his name; and the Australian première of the Canadian sleeper hit Anitsocial, which looks like a thrilling  mind-meld.

Of course it wouldn’t be SUFF if there wasn’t just a wee bit of weird.  Birdemic  and the sequel no one asked for, but many secretly wanted Birdemic 2: The Resurrection look to amuse rather than scare. Documentary The Final Member looks at a penis museum and the men who volunteer to give it its first human specimen; and as always, you can always check out a fantastic and nutty array of Australian and International shorts at SUFF.
Tickets are on sale now and start $14 per adult/$12 conc for a single session – all the way through to $120 for a pass for the entire festival.

SUFF2013 will take place Thurs 5 Sept – Sunday 8 September at The Factory Theatre in Marrackville. Check out the full programme and buy tickets @