6 items from 2017
The premiere will take place at the Hayden Orpheum Picture Palace in Cremorne next Tuesday, February 28, followed by Pomeranz and Stratton in conversation after the film.
The documentary, directed by Sally Aitken and executive produced by Sherpa's Jen Peedom, features the likes of Gillian Armstrong, Eric Bana, Bryan Brown, Russell Crowe, Judy Davis, Nicole Kidman, George Miller, Sam Neill, Geoffrey Rush, Fred Schepisi, Warwick Thornton, Jacki Weaver and Hugo Weaving.
.The documentary provides insight to a side of David the Australian public haven.t seen before," said Transmission Films Joint Managing Directors Richard Payten and Andrew Mackie in a statement. "The chance to have David attend these screenings and speak personally about his life is a privilege...
Another Sydney Q&A will take place on »
- Harry Windsor
For the first time in decades a star-studded Australian film arrives that David Stratton will certainly not critique: after all, it tells the story of his life. Or his Cinematic Life, as director Sally Aitken puts it in the title of her feature documentary, which supplements the void left by ABC TV’s At the Movies with a veritable Stratts-fest.
Linking the life of its semiretired presenter (still a reviewer for the Australian) with the story of how (and which) locally made movies have left a big impression on him, the film is a sweet ode to our national cinema and a moving portrait of the beloved avuncular cinephile. The stars come out in force to salute Stratton: a Nicole Kidman here, a Russell Crowe there, »
- Luke Buckmaster
The influential champion of Australian film is getting his own: a documentary tracking his career in cinema, with a little help from some friends
From Nicole Kidman to Hugo Weaving, a who’s who of Australian cinema has assembled to pay tribute to the Australian film critic David Stratton in a new documentary out this March – David Stratton: A Cinematic Life.
George Miller, Gillian Armstrong, Geoffrey Rush, Eric Bana and Jacki Weaver all appear in the film to celebrate the critic’s long and revered career. After more than 50 years in the industry, Stratton is best known in Australia for cohosting the long-running film shows The Movie Show and At The Movies with Margaret Pomeranz but, as the film’s producer, Jo-Anne McGowan, explained to Guardian Australia, his impact reaches far beyond local audiences.
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- Steph Harmon
Nicole Kidman, Hugo Weaving, George Miller, Gillian Armstrong and Geoffrey Rush pay tribute to the Australian cinephile and critic in a new documentary out in March, David Stratton: A Cinematic Life. Directed by Sally Aitken, the documentary tracks Stratton’s love of films from his first cinema experience as a boy living in Melksham, England, to his time running the Sydney film festival and cohosting The Movie Show and At the Movies with Margaret Pomeranz.
• David Stratton documentary to offer a star-studded portrait of a very private man
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- Steph Harmon
“Berlin Syndrome” will premiere at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival on January 20.
W&H: Describe the film for us in your own words.
Cs: A young Australian photographer, Clare, meets Andi at the lights in Berlin. Lust and intimacy are replaced by entrapment and obsession.
W&H: What drew you to this story?
Cs: The mix of sex and both personal and state politics was potently interwoven through the novel the film is based on by [Australian author] Melanie Joosten. Clare is imprisoned by Andi. His parents were imprisoned by the state in the German Democratic Republic (Gdr). He is trying to create a bizarre utopia in his apartment in Berlin, with Clare as his created “girlfriend.”
I am fascinated by how she transcends her situation. How history is always present. How both Andi and Clare become ruled by the psychology of entrapment — he as the capturer and she as his prisoner. Clare cannot rely on anything or anyone. In the end, I fell in love with her resilience. She is a survivor.
W&H: What do you want people to think about when they are leaving the theater?
Cs: What are we entrapped by? Why, as young women, are we still fed and half-believe the fairy tale of the strong male figure and the erotic fixation with the passive female? What is the nature of obsession and control within our fictions and realities?
W&H: What was the biggest challenge in making the film?
Cs: Staying true to the relationship between Clare and Andi. Not letting fear guide me while getting inside an obsessive, terrifying relationship where mutual need is still very strong. I had to stay true to this, even though at times I was so angry, so fearful.
W&H: How did you get your film funded? Share some insights into how you got the film made.
Cs: In Australia, we are fortunate to be funded by government film agencies. Polly Staniford, our producer, also sought private investment within Australia, and we were supported by the wonderful people at Momento Films International.
W&H: What does it mean to have your film play at Sundance?
Cs: Sundance feels like a great fit for “Berlin Syndrome,” as it has always has a really interesting mix of documentaries, dramas, and genre films.
W&H: What’s the best and worse advice you’ve received?
Cs: The best is to keep making making work. Don’t stop. This is hard sometimes with kids and life. This is strong advice given to me by Jane Campion.
I forget the worst, as I didn’t take it.
W&H: What advice do you have for other female directors?
Cs: Make work. Keep making work.
W&H: Name your favorite woman-directed film and why.
Cs: When I was 16, I saw “My Brilliant Career” by Gillian Armstrong. It had a profound effect on me personally, as it is the story of a young woman fighting to find her identity. The story landscape of the Brindabella mountain range was my landscape; when I was growing up, I could see it, snow-capped, out of my kitchen window. I still love the film.
W&H: Have you seen opportunities for women filmmakers increase over the last year due to the increased attention paid to the issue? If someone asked you what you thought needed to be done to get women more opportunities to direct, what would be your answer?
Cs: In the last 40 years, we have had a real push from women to be involved in the film industry in Australia. This becomes harder and harder as opportunities for training and female-centered funds drop away.
I believe women haven’t “made it,” and this is obvious when we look at the percentage of films and TV series made by women. We need to push for more specialized female-centered film funding, training, and support.
Sundance 2017 Women Directors: Meet Cate Shortland — “Berlin Syndrome” was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. »
- Kelsey Moore
David Stratton's Stories of Australian Cinema is set to premiere on the ABC this year over three episodes. Before that broadcast (the date of which is still under wraps) a theatrical cut will be distributed by Transmission.
Produced for the ABC by Stranger than Fiction's Jo-Anne McGowan (Art+Soul) with support from Screen Australia, Screen Nsw, Adelaide Film Festival and Transmission, Stratton describes the project as "very personal".
"It.s not a history of Australian film at all. It.s called David Stratton.s Stories of Australian Cinema, and it's really just that. Without wanting to sound too pretentious about it, it.s sort of my journey coming to Australia from England, running the Sydney Film Festival for eighteen years, fighting censorship, [and] being at the Sydney Film Festival just as the Australian New Wave was happening with the Peter Weirs and the Gillian Armstrongs and the Fred Schepisis. »
- Harry Windsor
6 items from 2017
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