Films Screened In 1998

17 Years to Earth takes us on a journey through a young girl's diary. She writes about a perfect life full of love and happiness. Unfortunately, none of it is true. Director Perry Lin handles this story of a girl's bittersweet voyage of self-discovery with sensitivity and an eye for detail, producing both funny and truly poignant moments. This film combines a powerful screenplay and excellent perf... Read more
A kind of alternative Eden where nature can be cultivated and an encounter can take your breath away, the romanticised paradise at the centre of 28 contrasts with the urban interior loft apartment setting of its imagining. The caustic irony of Sax's previous film 27 (MIFF 1996) has given way to a gentle melancholia. While whether this episode represents remembered idyll or idealised love is not ma... Read more
A dance film with a different angle. Snappy editing, witty and pointed sound design, athletic performances and dramatic lighting enhance this inventive and joyous celebration of power and delicacy, grace and verve. ... Read more
A man is diverted from his weekend routine by a romantic encounter with a woman. Dismissing the encounter as brief distraction, he hurriedly absconds to make his appointment with his best friend - mentioning nothing to the friend about why he is so late. After recovering from the effrontery of the man's lateness, the discerning friend detects a change in the man. Recognising the significance of th... Read more
One of the most promising talents in French documentary filmmaking, Claire Simon weighs in forcefully with her debut fiction feature. A Foreign Body is an original, sometimes blackly comical, disturbing and questioning account of the dramatic consequences of a young girl's faked pregnancy. ... Using a clinical manner honed in her non-fiction work, Simon has made an uncompromising film. The script,... Read more
"A Russian man regularly travels through the towns and villages of Japan. He observes and listens to the conversations of ordinary Japanese people, looks at the cities, reads about the history of the country. Every time he goes back to Russia his thoughts are dominated by what he has seen. He has to break free of the dreams of Japan. But they are not figments of his imagination. The Russian travel... Read more
Fans of Takeshi's two films prior to this (Violent Cop and Boiling Point) must have had their expectations confounded! After his relentless explorations of renegade cops and pitiless Yakuza, to come up with a Japanese surfing romance?! A Scene at the Sea is such a delight that it seems uncomplimentary to describe it as sweet, gentle and melancholy. It is all these things, in the extreme, but forge... Read more
"A negro and a white man linked to each other by four feet of hate and a steel chain!' - an immortal Defiant Ones tag line from a fascinating compendium of coming attractions, hyping mass-market black-oriented features from 1946 to 1976. Rare promos reveal the kitschy packaging of people of colour, from Uncle Remus to Mandingo. ... "Watch how ethnic images evolve, debonair Nat King Cole and Doroth... Read more
It's part fact, part hysteria - totally enthralling. Alien Big Cats takes to the Australian bush with spot-light in one hand, conspiracy theory in the other - all in search of a wild (and decidely non-native) species of big cat. Local filmmakers Christopher Gogos and Alkinos Tsilimidos track down the people supporting the genuine cat stories, including the legend that American servicemen stationed... Read more
Through a progression of flashbacks, Amor tells the story of eight year old Caitlin living with her diplomat parents in Buenos Aires. Influenced by the surrounding popular culture of romance, Caitlin learns about love, sex and disillusion through the relationship Marta, the family maid, and her handsome nocturnal visitor. ... Read more
With Amy, Nadia Tass demonstrates the breadth of her talent as both director and producer. The quirky comic elements of her previous successes, including Malcolm and The Big Steal, are retained in Amy, but there is much more in store. Amy was struck deaf-mute after witnessing the death, on stage, of her muso father, Will (Oz rocker Nick Barker). Her only form of communication is through song. In t... Read more
In the dungeon many things stir. A creature waits for something to be hatched while trying to rid itself of the scuttling spiders which also inhabit the dungeon. A claymation piece exploring the tension between captivity and release. ... Read more
The 70s were tumultuous times but one bit of nostalgia overlooked by The Ice Storm was the cultural impact of the Sex Pistols. '77 is as much a coming of age story set in a small Sussex village as it is about the currents of change that were challenging the traditions and deep-seated moralism of a society uncertain about its future. '77 sweeps us into David's lovelorn experiences amidst a backdrop... Read more
A suggestion of menace hangs over this film. Verité footage of visitors to an amusement park and Montreal pedestrians going about their daily business is imbued with grinding tension by a brooding soundtrack and hesitant, almost voyeuristic, zoom lens distant closeness. Through skilful understatement the almost palpable sense of foreboding and potential catastrophe is held in suspension beyond the... Read more
Dan Vardy-Cobb lives at home with his parents, but he has a dream. Dan wants to abandon the restrictions of his suburban world and let his abundant musical creativity run free in the high risk, high energy world of his hero, Tina Arena. When Dan packs up to relocate to the big smoke, he has no idea of the trials and tribulations facing a solo performer in the dog-eat-dog world of Melbourne shoppin... Read more
Larry Cohen's two Blaxploitation flicks - Black Caesar and Hell Up in Harlem - are often accused of ripping off the genre whitey-style. But Cohen is a sharp genre-crossing exploitation master. He delivers the funk and the action in Black Caesar and rams it hard and fast. Fred Williamson - ex-fighter and wannabe actor - sweats, grins, chomps and shoots in characteristic fashion. Loosely based on Li... Read more
Black Jack is the long-awaited feature-length animation of Tezuka Osamu's (Astro Boy, Kimba the White Lion) classic comic book of the same name. When a group of mysterious 'superhumans' suddenly come down with a debilitating illness that robs them of their power, Black Jack (a reclusive medical genius) is hesitantly drawn into a web of corporate conspiracies and human biological experiments of glo... Read more
An intimate account about a San Francisco dyke's one-night stand with a straight girl is voiced to a sequence of impersonal and static urban landscape takes. The combination of subjective voice working with shots of the empty landscape conjures a melancholic narrative of love and loss. Awarded Director's Choice at the Black Maria Festival. ... Read more
Blue Note Records has influenced more than jazz in its time. Its cultural significance has reached out to filmmakers, designers, artists and actors across the globe. Blue Note: A Story of Modern Jazz stands as a vibrant document of one of the most important periods in the development of modern music. The story begins in 1939 when two European emigres - Alfred Lion and Frank Wolff - fled Nazi Germa... Read more
Bounce allows us to sneak into the real-life under-belly of Shibuya, Tokyo's teen capital. The film is fast, twisted, thoroughly involving, and easily stands alongside Kids and La Haine as no holds barred accounts of disaffected youth. In Shibuya - where the world's best accessorised youth come out to shop, chat and hang out - it's tough keeping up in the fast lane of Japanese pop culture. ... For... Read more
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