I wasn't as proactive as I had hoped for this festival; running on a budget and knew I was going to fatigue quite quickly in the same manner that I was back in SxSW - falling asleep through a handful of films! I bought a Matinee pass which allowed me entry into 6 films with a few restrictions (daytime screenings). Couldn't get all the films that I wanted, but managed to narrow it all down to the following six plus a few extra things:
Cutie & the Boxer
Stand Clear of the Closing Doors
Shorts: Let There Be Light
Inside Out: The People's Art Project
Shorts: Character Witness
Lil Bub & Friends
The Bombay Sapphire House of Imagination
Lil Bub and Friends was streamed online and it was quite cute. The biggest take-out was the fact that a meme managerexisted!
The Bombay Sapphire House of Imagination was a pretty cool experience; you can't go wrong with free drinks and popcorn, crowd-sourced transmedia projects and telling more than you should to a cute little robot. We'll need to follow up as to whether any of our rantings made it to the final cut for the robot documentary project. Kudos to Bombay Sapphire!
And my favourites as below:
Cutie & the Boxer - a look into the relationship between oddball artist Ushio Shinohara and his wife Noriko. Even in their post-screening Q & A, there is still a lot of passive-aggressive, yet, endearing bickering between the two.
Powerless - a documentary exploring a power supply and theft problem in a large city in India; looking at both sides - from the MD of the power-supply company, to the local thief-bro who specialises in hooking people up with free electricity in the neighbourhood.
Shorts: Character Witness - this was an intense 7 shorts, with the theme centralising around death and destruction. It was particularly emotionally-draining, but insightful - cryogenics, photography-recovery, post-death belongings and surfboards were all discussed at some point.
When Fei and I were much younger. This was probably taken around 5-6 years ago. Now that I think back at it I might've unintentionally went for a young Tom Rowland look, and Fei regularly insisted she was Bjork.
This was my first year @ SxSW and decided to go all in on it - Interactive, Film and Music.
I managed to catch 15 films this year; it wasn't until I was paying attention to some previews on the last day that I realised I had only scratched the surface - there were still so many more films to go through! But since I had to divide my time between all 3 things plus more, I think I did the best I could. I hope some of the ones I've missed get some proper distribution, particularly to Australia if there's the chance. I've got the guide as well so I think I'll do some catching up once the dust settles a bit.
My film list:
Who Taught You to Drive?
Before You Know It
Spark: A Burning Man Story
x4 Short Film Programmes
The topics and content for the most part was awesome, but a lot had a few challenges putting it together in a good structure or narrative to really, REALLY make them stand out.
My picks from the festival:
Punk Syndrome - a documentary about a Finnish punk band. The members are mentally handicapped. Heart-breakingly sweet.
Mr Angel - a documentary about Buck Angel, a female-to-male transgender pornstar. It was fascinating and quite an eye-opener!
Spark: A Burning Man Story - titles says it all; the cinematography in this was amazing.
Before You Know It - This one topped the list for me; it was a documentary about 3 elderly gay men getting by in today's contemporary society and their stories. Unfortunately there wasn't a trailer for this online Keep an eye out for it; if people feel the same way about it as I do, it should be making a few festival rounds this year.
Caught these pictures whilst browsing the MOMA upcoming exhibitions. There's one on everyday sound which I'll be missing since I might be here (NY) by the time it opens. There is a Taiwanese artist Hong-Ka Wang who explores everyday ambient sounds and invited some factory workers in for some sound exploration for one of her projects; these are two captures from the mini-doco which I thought was beautiful.
My dad was brought up on this Jet Li superhero bullshit, and I was stuck with Pokemon. No wonder there is a generational gap in attitudes. I need to like.. go forge some woks and fight an army of corrupt jerks to right wrongs or something.
In my humble opinion one of the highlights and most underrated for the Sydney Festival this year. Don't think it's quite for everyone, but if you are into eerie electronic soundscapes, you will definitely be in for a treat! Pit it against a beautiful Sydney backdrop whilst the sun sets, bring some beers/ wine/ cheese and you've got yourself a perfect evening