Sydney Film Festival Gives a Peek of What To Expect for This Year’s Program
© Rachel Ward Actor-director for Rachel’s Farm (Palm Beach, SFF 2019)
The announcement was made ahead of the official program launch set for May 10.
In providing a brief look at this year’s program, the Sydney Film Festival sought to underscore how far it has come since being established in 1954 and how it has positioned itself to become a much-awaited event for thought-provoking and quality cinematic work year after year.
He added, “The 2023 program will expand on this legacy, promising to ignite stimulating dialogues and present powerful ideas that will broaden audience perspectives.”
Among the work included in the Festival’s sneak peek were two new Australian documentaries — Rachel’s Farm and The Last Daughter — and a feature film from New Zealand — Red, White & Brass.
Rachel’s Farm follows actor-director Rachel Ward in her bid to revitalise her northern NSW beef farm using sustainable farming practices. The Last Daughter, meanwhile, has Wiradjuri woman Brenda Matthews documenting her search for the truth about her government-ordered abduction as a child, and find her white foster family. Both Matthews and Ward are to attend the Festival to present their work.
Red, White & Brassis is a comedy from director Damon Fepulea’i based on the true story of Tongan rugby superfans who made their way to the Rugby World Cup by volunteering to be the marching band, despite having never played.
The rest of the work previewed were:
- No Bears by Iranian director Jafar Panahi, who is banned from making films in his home country of Iran;
- Afire, a Berlin Film Festival Bear-winning feature by Christian Petzold;
- L’immensità, a film starring Penelope Cruz who plays a mother with marital troubles, alongside her child embracing his gender identity in 1970s Rome;
- A Couple by Frederick Wiseman which deals with the turbulent relationship between literary giants Leo and Sophia Tolstoy;
- Subject, a documentary which explores the impact of documentaries on their onscreen participants;
- Bobi Wine: The People’s President is a documentary following the journey of the Ugandan musician-turned-politician campaigning to end the country’s dictatorship;
- While We Watched by director Vinay Shukla documents the struggle of Indian journalist Ravish Kumar against misinformation and political power in his pursuit for independent reporting;
- When the Waves Are Gone is a drama from Filipino filmmaker Lav Diaz about two policemen on a collision course in the Philippines; and
- Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman, the debut film of director Pierre Földes, which is an animated adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s short story collection of the same name.
Since its inception, the Sydney Film Festival has brought more than 10,000 films to Australian audiences.
For this year’s edition of the festival, flexi-passes and subscriptions are now on sale.
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