June 15th, 2009


Film Festivities

I didn't see enough of the Sydney Film Festival to pass any final judgement -- but that was in part because the films we did want to see were scattered so awkwardly about that we didn't have much incentive to do so. I probably aren't the intended audience, but I think I am fairly in tune with some of their goals -- seeing as they did indeed run Wake in Fright and two zombie flicks, for a start.

Given the badly organised queues we were in yesterday (people were arguing about which half of the stairway they were supposed to be in), and a couple of other things, the problems may have been more systemic.

Anyway: the films.

I'm wasn't sure Wake in Fright could live up to its twenty-year status as a lost classic, but it did a fine job trying. It was very nice to see some solid, uncompromising film-making. A proper TR review will hopefully follow. Have a beer to tide you over.

Having never lived in the outback, Cold Souls tale of artistic ennui may have actually cut closer to home. It was about trading in souls, as the main character tries to relieve himself of his burdens, and perhaps try a little Russian Poet on for size. Some interesting ideas and funny moments, but in the end it just didn't do enough with its central idea or its characters to work. It played with the short We Who Stayed Behind which was a fairly nice apocalyptic mood piece.

Probably the clearest indication of the ambitions of Dead Snow is that one of the characters wears a Braindead t-shirt. It was ultra-gory slapstick with Nazi zombies; nothing deep, but it certainly got the crowd reacting to its excesses.