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Australia, 1976 (MIFF 2011, MIFF 60th Retrospective)

Director: Fred Schepisi


"The people in Fred Schepisi's The Devil's Playground are like sculpted figures that glow with their own light." - New Yorker

The Devil's Playground revolves around Tom Allen, a 13-year-old boy growing up in the rigorous confines of a 1950s Catholic seminary and torn between the demands of the priesthood and his own burgeoning sexuality.

A winner of multiple AFI awards, including Best Screenplay and Best Director, The Devil's Playground (MIFF 1976) was writer-director Fred Schepisi's semi-autobiographical feature film debut. A stark yet sensual study of the imminence of desire, even amidst the most austere of surrounds, Schepisi's film was at the time a deeply controversial portrait of religious sexual repression.

Fred Schepisi, whose new film The Eye of the Storm also screens in this year's program, is a guest of the Festival.

Print courtesy of The National Film and Sound Archive of Australia.

D/P/S Fred Schepisi WS Fred Schepisi TD 35mm/1976

See also...


Australia, 1978
MIFF Patron Geoffrey Rush presents a film that had a formative experience on him, Fred Schepisi's The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith. A Q&A session featuring Geoffrey Rush and Fred Schepisi will follow th… More »

The Skin Game

Australia, 1969
An advertising film, presenting a long-established product in new-style marketing terms. ... Silver Award, Australian Film Awards 1970 ... More »

Jigglers Unlimited

Australia, 1971
An advertising film extolling the virtues of teabags. ... More »

The Shape of Quality

Australia, 1965
The manufacture of the body, and the assembly of the complete Volkswagen, is shown in this film which is distinguished by complex camera work and striking colour effects. ... Silver Award, Public Rel… More »

People Make Papers

Australia, 1966
An impressionistic account of the production of a newspaper. ... Golden Reel Award, Public Relations Category, Australian Film Awards. ... More »

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