The schedule for this year's BIFF has been announced. Tickets go on sale July 18, but luckily, because I'm with St. George, the main sponsors of the festival, I get to buy my tickets now. Hehe.
Unlike the last year or two, when there would be, at most, one film I really wanted to see, this year there are several...
(images of Son of Rambow, Redacted and The Adventures Of Barry McKenzie from their respective pages on the BIFF site)
Son Of Rambow (UK) - directed by Garth Jennings who helmed the underrated Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy movie. It's about two young boys in the 80's who innocently try to recreate Rambo. I've heard nothing but very positive reviews of this movie as being incredibly sweet, funny and nostalgic. Both of its sessions will sell out once word gets out it's screening.
Acolytes (Australia) - a dark revenge thriller involving teens and a serial killer, starring Joel Edgerton and written by my screenwriting tutor from back at uni. He talked about it three years ago in class about making the sale, and I'm interested to see how it turned out.
Redacted (US) - Brian dePalma's supposed return to form, a brutal, in-your-face drama from the front lines of the Iraq War. Lauded and (ironically) censored in the States, I'm interested to see if this will be censored for the Australian festival screening.
George A Romero's Diary Of The Dead (US) - yet another Romero zombie movie, this time, done in the style of a mock documentary at the birth of the zombie invasion. Actually, this is in my maybe pile, due to negative reviews.
There's also an Australian retrospective titled "Ozploitation". If you'll recall, during the Australian New Wave of the 1970's, the Australian film community was divided between classy and high art films like Picnic At Hanging Rock and Newsfront. Here is the other end of the spectrum: films deemed crass and commercial, but damned if they didn't get Australians going to see Australian movies. It's featuring screenings of 70's Aussie "crass classics" like Alvin Purple, Long Weekend, The Adventures Of Barry McKenzie, Patrick, Stone, The Man From Hong Kong and the infamously terrible Turkey Shoot. I'd be keen to see just about any one of these on the big screen for the first time - particularly Long Weekend.
Opening the festival this year is Where In The World Is Osama Bin Laden? - Morgan Spurlock's follow up from his Oscar nominated international hit Super Size Me. Interesting choice to open the festival. I've heard predominantly negative reviews of it, but maybe there's something that the BIFF peeps have seen in it. Spurlock will be attending the screening on 31st July.
The showcase gala screenings which I would never actually pay to go to since the tickets are incredibly expensive for movies which will get a general release anyway include David Mamet's newbie Redbelt, starring the always good Chiwetel Ejiofor and Tim Allen, and the critically praised animated film Persepolis. Also screening is Irish gangster comedy In Bruges starring Colin Farrell, Ralph Fiennes and Brendan Gleeson.
The closing film of the festival is John Maybury's The Edge Of Love starring Cillian Murphy, Keira Knightley, Sienna Miller and Matthew Rhys. You may have read about it because Keira supposedly has a sex scene in it and her mother wrote the script. Um, so?