With so much stimulation out there, still nothing beats the shock and awe of getting out of your comfort zone – something MIFF can provide in riches. Think about it: you, the captive audience, in an enveloping darkness, surrounded by the best sound and vision in Melbourne. The film may shock you with what it shows or how it shows it (Long takes! No dialogue! Animation!). You may even be transformed.
This year, get out of that familiar zone and take a punt on something new. It may be an eight-hour Filipino opus, a documentary about a young Afghani rapper-activist or Poland’s first horror-mermaid-musical.
For something visceral, don’t miss our focus on Virtual Reality and, for something more corporeal, marvel at how the human body expresses emotion through movement in our focus on Dance.
Brand new to MIFF this year is our Headliners section: these are the top, most-anticipated films of the year, with high-octane auteurship, star power and awards honour, all in The Comedy Theatre.
Plus the best in new Australian cinema, documentaries, shorts, retrospective wonders and more.
But MIFF is more than screenings; it is also the experience of discussing films, arguing about them and rethinking them.
Apart from the cinemas, the place to be at is The Blackhearts Club, downstairs at The Forum, where you can experience a special winter wonderland of food, wine and entertainment. This is the social destination where you will meet fellow culture vultures, visiting filmmakers and who knows who and what else!
My thanks to the entire staff and Board of MIFF for their passion and hard work putting together the 65th edition of the Melbourne International Film Festival.
Get out of your comfort zone and dive into the MIFF-zone!
Welcome to your wintry windswept FilmFest – another phenomenal year where you can go MIFFing in action.
Before movies were even born, Dickens proclaimed that the fundamentals of good storytelling were: “make them laugh, make them cry, make them wait”. Then Hitchcock wryly observed: “a lot of films are about Life, mine are like a slice of cake” – Bette Davis rebutted with: “Fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a bumpy night”.
MIFF gives a satellite view of world stories on the Big Screen – in a conversation with retrospective legacy, feeling the pulse of the brightest and most creative filmmakers from both hemispheres, and grabbing the sharp side of the knife with Final Cuts – revelatory and revolutionary.
But the forecast is not inclement with storm warnings and southerly busters. This festival recognises that screens, once exclusively ‘silver’, are now phosphorescent, pixelated, cyber-sourced – and small enough to fit into the palm of your hand, with High Definition but perhaps a Low Resoluteness.
The k’ching’k’ching of downloading tempts our eyeballs and the downpour of this Torrential Reign is inevitable. ‘Anywhere Anytime’ is undeniably the new consumption mantra. But if you espouse the arousal and the intrigue of the iChing – seeking enlightenment at a specific time and in a communal space – that’s why you’re here at MIFF.
Run naked, unadorned and with abandon in this unique Melbourne festival deluge!