The Sydney Film Festival is fast approaching and is about to launch its first full-scale festival since COVID hit.
Discuss with The latchSFF director Nashen Moodley said that assuming all goes according to plan, it will be “absolutely wonderful” to be able to host all the parties and events surrounding film screenings again and to be able to invite the filmmakers to participate in person. .
“We are very confident that when the festival returns in June, we can have international filmmakers,” he said, adding that they have “invited a lot of people to come with us.”
“This festival will not only be a new screening in cinemas, but also a celebration of cinema outside cinema, through parties and conferences and various film-related events,” he said.
This week, SFF announced the first 22 films to be screened during the festival, barely 10% of what’s in store.
“There’s a lot more to come,” Moodley teased, “but I think there’s a lot of interest in these 22 films and they give some idea of where we’re headed for the festival. There will be a very wide range of films from around the world and we are delighted to present them to an audience.
As for what to expect for audiences this year, Moodley promised there would be “something for everyone”.
“We have received an extraordinary number of applications and people can expect the very best in international and Australian cinema,” he said, adding, “we understand that we have such a wide range of people who come to the festival with such a wide range of tastes. , so we try to cater for everyone”.
Of the 22 films announced in the teaser, four are Australian, and Moodley said they were “really excited” about the selection.
“We see this as introducing new Australian talent to the public,” he said. “In each case, these are filmmakers early in their careers, and we think each of these films is very, very impressive.”
Here are the five must-see films by Nashan Moodley that will screen at SFF in June.
Directed by: Cornish Luke
Synopsis: On the urban outskirts of Sydney, two young women fight for a better life in the underworld of competitive street dancing.
Patricia, born in Romania and awaiting a visa, is a breakdancer. Gabi, of Chilean-Samoan origin, bursts with power. Both dream of escaping the harsh hand inflicted on them.
Will a victory in Australia’s biggest dance competition, Destructive Steps – in which 60 competitors compete in the preliminary rounds – be their golden ticket? Or will the external pressures of financial difficulties and unstable relationships keep them from even hitting the dancefloor?
Director Luke Cornish has spent seven years filming the progress of women. Waiting to see how they fare will put you on the edge of your seat.
Moodley says: “They are two truly inspiring characters. I think it’s going to be a really good screening.
Directed by: Macaire De Souza
Synopsis: Maxie, Summer and James share a deep bond and love for music. James (Rory Potter) is the entrepreneur of the trio, he is aiming for a career as a promoter. Summer (Yasmin Honeychurch) has an amazing voice. Maxie (Rasmus King, Bosch & Rockit, SFF 2021) is the maestro of mischief.
When James receives a devastating diagnosis, the friends – each with a burden to bear – throw themselves into a whirlwind of festivals in an attempt to escape reality.
Featuring top artists Dune Rats, G Flip, Bliss n Eso, B Wise, Peking Duk, Ruby Fields, Jerome Farah, Kobie Dee and more – and fantastic footage shot at actual festivals – 6 Festivals is a letter d moving love to a young friendship and the overwhelming power of live music.
Moodley says: “The film is very intelligent in that it was shot in real festivals, so there is a real dynamism.
I think it’s a wonderful film because apart from the film industry, the live music industry has taken such a hit during the pandemic.
It’s really about the celebration of live music and how important it can be for people, especially young people, this life-changing nature of live music.
I think it’s a great film that we’re very happy to bring to audiences for the first time in Australia.
Trailer: No trailer for this one just yet, but stay tuned and we’ll update when there is!
Directed by: Hannah Barlow, Kane Senes
Synopsis: Don’t call popular welfare advocate Cecilia “Sissy.” It’s an old nickname that brings back traumatic memories of school bully Alex, who drove a wedge between 12-year-old Cecilia and her best friend Emma.
A decade later, Cecilia (a stunning Aisha Dee) bumps into Emma, who invites Cecilia to her bachelorette party at a remote bush estate. What could go wrong with this happy reunion?
Well, pretty much everything from when Cecilia comes face to face with Alex and all revenge fueled hell breaks loose.
Playing fast, funny and gory, writer-director duo Hannah Barlow and Kane Senes subvert slasher film conventions while delivering a scathing satire of influencer culture and approval addiction.
Moodley says: Sissy is a movie that just screened at the SXSW festival. It’s darkly funny, it’s very bloody, it’s very entertaining, I think it’s a movie that will really satisfy an audience that loves horror movies.
Directed by: David Esteel
Synopsis: There’s nothing in Australian cinema to compare with this remarkable feature debut from filmmaker-lawyer David Easteal.
Shot almost exclusively from the back seat of a car that doubles as a safe space and confessional, this deceptively simple film is deeply layered and emotionally rewarding.
The affable man behind the wheel is Andrew Rakowski, a colleague Easteal met at a Melbourne legal center.
On Rakowski’s journeys from work to home – solo or with Easteal for company – we experience the highs and lows of a man whose life story is anything but ordinary.
Not a moment is wasted in this boldly crafted, cleverly executed, and quietly compelling existential road movie.
Moodley says: It’s something pretty amazing, I think, because it’s three hours in the car, either one or two people in the car, having conversations with each other or on the phone, and it’s become something extremely captivating and enjoyable.
It’s quite an achievement. He’s a very talented filmmaker and I think people are going to be blown away.
Directed by: Kamila Andini
Synopsis: Yuni (Arawinda Kirana) is the smartest in her school and aspires to go to college. But her high school becomes increasingly puritanical, insisting on mandatory virginity tests for girls and a ban on music.
Yuni’s hopes are further dampened by two marriage proposals from older men she barely knows. Her grandmother urges her to accept this “blessing”, as it is said that a woman who rejects three suitors is destined never to marry. Faced with this societal pressure, Yuni must also negotiate her crush on a teacher and the affections of a shy Yoga classmate, a budding poet.
A sensitive portrait of a vibrant and unforgettable character of rising star Andini, a distinctive and essential voice of international cinema.
Moodley says: Andini is an extremely talented filmmaker. This is her third feature film and she is destined for international greatness, I think and hope.
It’s very poetic, this film, and I think people will really relate to it.
Find out more about the films on offer at the Sydney Film Festival and buy tickets here.