This June, the Sydney Film Festival celebrates their 65th anniversary and, as always, will screen an amazing set of films from all over the world. Here we offer a selection of the best films and documentaries rumoured to be on offer at the fest. SFF runs 6th June – 17th June and will showcase movies, documentaries, animations, and short-films across Greater Sydney, full program yet to be disclosed.
Directed by Oscar-winner Sebastian Lelio, Disobedience follows the story of Ronit (Rachel Weisz), a New York-based photographer that had close ties to the Jewish community of London. Daughter of a rabbi, Ronit’s alternative sexual preference is not well received in her orthodox community. With her father’s sudden death Ronit returns into the fold of the disapproving community, staying with her childhood friend Dovid and his wife, Esti (Rachel McAdams). An old flame, the sparks between Esti and Ronit are rekindled and and their relationship takes on centre stage. The movie focuses on the conflict that arises between community, religion, suppressing one’s true self and the search for what we desire from the bottom of our hearts.
American Animals (2018)
This docu-feature was one of the main highlights at the Sundance Film Festival. Directed by Bart Layton, the fictional documentary tells the story of four middle-class students who attempt the biggest art heist in history by stealing a set of rare books. The film includes performances by young stars like Blake Jenner and Barry Keoghan, but goes on to document the four older counterparts reflecting on their past mistakes. It’s a compelling thriller that changes the perception of the genre itself.
This Israeli-based film has featured at many festivals and now it’s hitting Sydney. Foxtrot is not only critically acclaimed but has serious word of mouth due to it’s criticism of Israeli politics. The movie follows the story of the Feldmans, an affluent Tel Aviv family, who are struck by the sudden notice of death of their son Jonathan. Later, the family learns he did not die as a result of active service in war, but due to a huge mistake by the Israeli army. The film highlights human relations, war, and its horrors, but also the importance of enjoying life even at the worst of times. It’s a complex film full of light and shadow, but the main message is against war and can be interpreted as against the Israeli forces. Foxtrot can be likened to films such as Good Morning Vietnam (1987), sharing a healthy criticism for war using pop music strategically to cushion the audience during the harshest moments.
Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle (2017)
This Spanish film is a loose autobiography of the director Gustavo Salmerón’s mother, Julieta. Laid back and fun loving, family, friends and food are the centers of Spanish culture and this movie portrays all these qualities in a natural way. The movie tells the story of Julieta, who only had three dreams: having lots of kids, owning a monkey and living in a castle. After achieving your hardest and most desired dreams, we must never forget that life goes on and this is precisely what this movie tells us. Lots of Kids, a Monkey and a Castle is the perfect film to understand the cultural, familial and historical background of Spain. This style of film has become very big in Spain after Spanish actor and director Paco León released his movie Carmina o revienta (2012), which featured his mum in the leading role. The film is also a must watch if you are interested in Spanish culture.
This UK offering was entirely filmed in Yorkshire, featuring great actors such as Martin Freeman, Andy Nyman, and rising star Alex Lawther, who appeared in acclaimed TV shows like Black Mirror (2016) and The End of the F***ing World (2017). The film is based on three mysterious ghost stories, and it is the skeptic professor Phillip Goodman who leads us through spooky scenes on a horror-filled quest that will have you covered in goosebumps all the way.
After the Lockouts (2017)
Fashion Industry Broadcast is also one of the final round selections in the 65th Sydney Film Festival with our feature documentary After the Lockouts (2017). The film deconstructs the lockout policies in the city of Sydney, and how these impositions are changing society, youth culture, tourism, the fashion, music, entertainment and night industries for the worse. It also offers bold new solutions that will leave the most apathetic Sydneysider wondering why we’ve done nothing to change the status quo and allowed government to get away with murder. For more visit afterthelockouts.com.
Which is your favorite pick to win in The Sydney Film Festival? Leave a comment below!