BASTARDY

Australia, 2008 (MIFF 2017, Australian,Premiere Fund)

Director: Amiel Courtin-Wilson

'Extraordinary … a film that blurs the boundary between documentary and video art. Bastardy is a fascinating and engaging film about a complex, flawed and extremely likeable man.' – Cinema Autopsy

Jack Charles is Bastardy: a 73-year-old homosexual Aboriginal elder, award-winning actor, professional cat burglar and junkie. A child of the stolen generation, Charles drifted into Melbourne's bohemian underground in the early 60s, where he found the theatre, a lover, heroin and a talent for thievery. Between long stints in jail he's also maintained a successful acting career.

Supported by the MIFF Premiere Fund, Amiel Courtin-Wilson's (The Silent Eye, MIFF 2017) impressionistic 2008 portrait captured Jack Charles warts and all, in his many contradictions: a man who evokes a rich sense of poetry and humour, and embodies a streetwise indomitability.

'Jack is one of the most important people in my life. He is f**king unstoppable and I love him deeply for it. This film is a gift to him.' – filmmaker Amiel Courtin-Wilson

Bastardy is re-screening at the festival in 2017 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the MIFF Premiere Fund – a decade of supporting new Australian theatrical films and feature-length documentaries.

Director Amiel Courtin-Wilson and subject Jack Charles will attend the session to introduce the film and take part in a post-screening Q&A.


See also...

THE SILENT EYE

One of Australia's most innovative filmmakers captures two legends – free jazz pioneer Cecil Taylor and modern dance artist Min Tanaka – in an intimate performance piece like no other. ... Considered ... More »

BASTARDY

"Jack is one of the most important people in my life. He is f**king unstoppable and I love him deeply for it. This film is a gift to him." - filmmaker Amiel Courtin-Wilson ... Jack Charles is Bastardy... More »

BEN LEE: CATCH MY DISEASE

A playful yet profoundly intimate portrait of singer-songwriter Ben Lee, and a fascinating portrayal of celebrity. ... Destined for stardom, Ben Lee cemented his place in the annals of Australian pop ... More »

Cicada

A man details his most intimate and life changing moment in a moving monologue. ... More »

On The Other Ocean

You there. It's late. Imagine yourself with the lid coming down. The hymnsand requiems. The sense of movement as you're borne along to the next place. ... More »

Adolescent

This stylised documentary film follows a group of teenagers at a party that gradually disintegrates over the course of a night. An inspiring miniature, it traces the rhythms of an adolescent gathering... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director