Films Screened In 2016

Documentary, storytelling and song from Sydney's Iraqi community tell a story of survival. ... Read more
"In his unorthodox answer to Hollywood action movies, Jerzy Skolimowski has made a film that is more than what it seems … An astonishing game of mirages, where time expands and contracts giddily." – Cinema Scope ... A student prepares to commit a robbery. A paramedic team races against the clock. A woman embarks on a tryst with a Hollywood filmmaker, unaware that her husband is on the way. At a Wa... Read more
Created by The Guardian newspaper, 6 x 9: An Immersive Experience of Solitary Confinement places users in a virtual cell that replicates those currently housing more than 80,000 US inmates. Offering an extraordinarily visceral and eye-opening insight into the psychologically damaging conditions of a practice condemned by the UN, but still widely used, this is hopefully the closest you'll ever come... Read more
Setsuko Hara gives a performance of great empathy as an aristocratic daughter struggling to adjust within the fallout of postwar Japan. ... Named best film of 1947 by Japan's esteemed Kinema Junpo, Kimisaburo Yoshimura's graceful, rarely screened Chekhovian drama essays the rigours of postwar adjustment for an aristocratic family, led by Setsuko Hara's typically moving performance. ... Hara plays ... Read more
"Short of putting Emmanuel Lubezki through astronaut training, it's difficult to imagine more rapturously beautiful images of the Earth from orbit than those supplied by A Beautiful Planet." – Variety ... Filmed by the astronauts aboard the International Space Station – after a crash course in 4K digital photography from cinematographer James Neihouse before they left the ground – A Beautiful Plan... Read more
"A meta-cinematic detective story set in 1960s Iran, shot through with counter-culture references and magical realism … never less than fascinating." – Screen Daily ... A political prisoner's apparent suicide leads a Chevrolet-driving detective to a desert island in the Persian Gulf. There, events quickly take a turn for the bizarre as the burial appears to trigger an earthquake. A geologist and a... Read more
"An historical journey, a love letter to Afghanistan, its cinema and people." – CineVue ... When the Taliban came to power, it marked the end of the Afghan film industry. They considered cinema to be the cornerstone of decadent Western culture, and would punish anyone who made new films, or failed to destroy existing films. But defiant art lovers ignored this decree, risking their lives to protect... Read more
A dutiful woman is struck with the dilemma of a lifetime when she uncovers a devastating secret from her husband's past. ... Middle-aged Milena (Mirjana Karanovic) is a devoted wife and mother living in an upscale suburb in Belgrade. Her contented existence is upended when, in a short space of time, she's diagnosed with breast cancer and she discovers an old VHS tape that shows footage of her husb... Read more
"Strange and ambling and sad and whimsical … A beautiful and eccentric waking dream about a modern-day Willy Loman played to subtle perfection by America's most beloved and accomplished leading man." – Chicago Sun-Times ... If Alan Clay (Tom Hanks) can convince the Saudi Arabian king to buy his new three-dimensional holographic teleconferencing system, the IT specialist is certain that his probl... Read more
"A visually sumptuous modernist monument whose beauty is at times of an unexpectedly Eisensteinian inspiration, Diaz's film is a work of utmost urgency." – Film Comment ... At the end of the 19th century, a battle for independence is raging in the Philippines. On the periphery of the uprising, a wounded revolutionary treks through the jungle with a student poet – while, elsewhere, a widow's search... Read more
"A beautifully poignant film that explores how musical customs create identity and overcome cultural suppression. Here, the power of music truly transcends politics." – Time Out UK ... In the 1930s, in the years before the Palestinian exodus, the German-Jewish musicologist Robert Lachmann moved to Jerusalem to study and celebrate the music of Palestine. His radio show, Oriental Music, was an attem... Read more
Reda lives in a Lebanese refugee camp, is addicted to heroin and is preparing to get married. Mahdi Fleifel (Xenos, MIFF 2014; A World Not Ours, MIFF 2013) returns with yet another stunning and pertinent documentary portrait. Winner of the Silver Bear Jury Prize (Short Film) at the 2016 Berlin International Film Festival. ... Read more
"Rodrigo Plá's short, taut woman-against-the-system thriller takes the medical insurance industry grippingly to task." – Variety ... Awoken in the middle of the night by the collapsing Guillermo, Sonia is faced with an ultimatum: wage war on the company refusing to fund the expensive healthcare needed to save her husband's life, or watch him die. With her son Dario in tow, she embarks on a vengefu... Read more
"Madam, I have seen many examples of perversion in my time, but your erotic obsession with your carpet is probably the most grotesque and certainly the most boring I have ever encountered." ... Henry Graham (Walter Matthau) is an ageing trust-fund kid who has grown accustomed to a life of luxury but squandered all his savings. Desperate to remain a part of high society, he makes a plan to find a w... Read more
"Sean McAllister's documentary about a family of Syrian refugees in Europe would be compelling at any time. Now it is unmissable. Five Stars." – The Guardian ... Love can blossom in many places. For Raghda and Amer, it sprouted in neighbouring Syrian prison cells in the mid 1990s. As months passed by, the activists got to know each other through a secret hole in the wall that kept them apart. Upon... Read more
Olivia is creator of the the lifelike Shinjoi (Soulmate) robots, but after the destruction of a prototype she begins to question the nature of love and loss. By Sarah-Jane Woulahan (Acts of God, MIFF 2014). ... Read more
"Perhaps the best film yet set against the mess of the ongoing Middle Eastern wars, Tobias Lindholm's latest is a scrupulous, unglamorized examination of battlefield decision-making, and its potentially devastating impacts, both there and back home." – Village Voice ... Picking up an Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Language Film, A War finds writer/director Tobias Lindholm (director of A... Read more
A program of exhilarating shorts by emerging filmmakers from Australia and New Zealand. See the work of tomorrow's hottest directors today. All Accelerator filmmakers are guests of the festival. ... Read more
A program of exhilarating shorts by emerging filmmakers from Australia and New Zealand. See the work of tomorrow's hottest directors today. All Accelerator filmmakers are guests of the festival. ... Read more
Ackroyd strolls his way through the dependent relationship between film and music, with some wonderful sounds and soundtrack highlights. Smooth cuts from every angle. ... Read more
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