With Fillim still only in its first year of business its amazing to see how many films are being uploaded as you read this. In the spirit of this progress I decided to show you just what you can look forward to soon and in the new year.
This Is Roller Derby
Having grown up in a small-ish coastal town in Australia whose main source of income is tourism and exports and main sources of fun were pubs and teenage pregnancy; it’s easy to see how many girls would try and find another way to have fun and express themselves. Roller Derby became a movement years and years ago but only found popularity in Australia recently, especially in my small-ish coastal town. I went to the games at the local sports stadium and cheered, booed and empathized with the girls who got elbowed in the face.
This Is Roller Derby chronicles a team of women trying to establish a Roller Derby league in the small town of Ballarat in Victoria Australia. These women face a close minded public as well as dealing with the many complications of their personal lives. The film juxtaposes this story of the women from Ballarat with established leagues all over Australia and America (where Roller Derby originated). Like the girls repeat throughout the film, Roller Derby isn’t just a sport, its a movement, a culture and a community and this film will show you this feeling of love and togetherness (as well as some pretty awesome bruises).
While I was doing my undergrad degree one of the lessons I learned was that co-productions in Australia were one of the ways forward for film in this country. With filmmakers finding it harder and harder to find funding co-productions are becoming the way to go. Not only that but with Australia becoming increasingly multicultural, these stories that explore the lives of people from other countries and how they see Australia is just another way of telling our national story. 33 Postcards is the second Australian film ever to be made under a treaty with China for film and television co-productions after the treaty was formed in 2008.
33 Postcards is the story of a Mei Mei (Zhu Lin) a 16 year old Chinese orphan who has been supported by her Australian sponsor Dean Randall (Guy Pearce), who tells her stories about his life in Australia. When Mei Mei comes to Australia with her orphanage she discovers that Dean is actually in prison but she continues to try to find her own place to call home, she gets caught up in with the wrong crowd and falls in love. It’s a coming of age story that will resonate with not only Australian teens but teens who had to leave their own countries for Australia.
Sorry to say it guys but Australia is aging. The older people are taking over this country and there is nothing we can do about it. I’m jesting, the older generation in Australia has a rich history; war time, depression and plague, these guys have seen it all (maybe not plague). I would roll my eyes every time one of my grandparents would start a story with “back in my day” but now I want to listen to these stories from another time; these people lived without TV, without the internet, without touch screens, without contraception and equal voting. These are the things us youngens take for granted and in this day and age stories of our older and more wiser counterparts could turn out to be more valuable than we first thought. We can finally find out what happens to us after we’ve grown up, the kids have moved out, we retire and our hair turns grey.
Codgers is this very story. It follows five older gentlemen, four of whom have been friends since war time, who just hang out at the gym to exercise, talk about their families and laugh. They are comfortable in their lives until some pretty interesting variables come into play that disrupt their utopia. They learn about themselves, about each other and about life; all while living in this world that we younger people are so comfortable in. This film is about remembering to laugh in the hardest of situations in your life.
I suspect that if you have read this long you’re noticing a pattern. Paragraph one is a way of connecting with my audience and Paragraph two is me linking the film that is mentioned to the first paragraph as well as telling you what the film is about. When I researched Bathing Franky I couldn’t for the life of me think about something to link it to. I could talk about carers in Australia, I could talk about ex-cons and how they re-integrate back into society or I could talk about the way we find connections in our lives through fate.
Through a magic realism mode of story telling Bathing Franky tells the story of ex con Steve and his friendship with a man named Rod. Don’t let the words ‘magic realism’ freak you out, this film uses imagination and magic to tell the story of connections between people. The tagline of the film is “with imagination we make the world”, which is true, we tell ourselves stories that make the world seem livable and beautiful. Bathing Franky is about the power of imagination in pretty sad circumstances and how this power that we all have can change the way we see the world.
Black and White and Sex
This film, oh my goodness, I wanted to see this film at the Sydney Film Festival so badly but I couldn’t make it to any of the sessions; I was pretty devastated that I couldn’t see it. Sex and sexuality has been making headlines around the world for the past couple of years; I think the world is in the middle of another sexual revolution. News stories about the slut walk, victim blaming, rape, homosexuality and transgender; all these topics that were once taboo are on our screens and in our papers.
Black and White and Sex is a documentary style film that revolves around a prostitute named Angie, who is played by eight different actresses, and her interviewer. Angie is there to “set the record straight” when it comes to sex, as she exposes herself layer by layer she exposes the interviewer and will probably expose our own feelings about sex and the job of being a sex worker. This film challenges stereotypes and tackles subjects that we normally wouldn’t talk about but I think now is the time that this film can really shine and really start a conversation in your living room about sex.
Crossing the Ice
Cas and Jonesy became something like national heroes back in 2008 when they successfully crossed the Tasman sea between Australia to New Zealand. They are self confessed adventure junkies and thrive when they are out of their comfort zone. They want people to understand that taking risks in life can be fulfilling, not to the extent of kayaking to New Zealand but maybe acting in that play or starting a business. They want to people live their life the way they want to and not to be dictated at by what others expect of you.
Crossing the Ice is the culmination of years of preparation for Cas and Jonesy’s next big adventure. Having been inspired by the stories of Antarctica’s great explorers, these guys decided it was a good idea to do an unaccompanied two man trip from the edge of Antarctica to the south pole and back on foot. Crossing the Ice follows Cas and Jonesy on this adventure, the highs and lows, the before and afters and the all important journey (all 2275 kms of it.)
I was lucky enough to have a quick chat with Jonesy about Crossing the Ice, which I will be uploading to the blog soon.
All of these films I have written about will be uploaded to Fillim in the next couple of months, with Crossing the Ice being the first on the 6th of December.