Sydney Film Festival 2008

It’s that time of year again.

So far I have chosen 11 films, some of which I will undoubtedly report about here.

I like to see Chinese films. D, who is Chinese (by birth and affinity, if no longer by nationality) doesn’t want to come to these. The Chinese films for foreigners all orientalize China, or are boring (Yellow Earth, Red Sorghum etc), or criticize China, or a combination of any of those faults. The Chinese films for Chinese are either slow and boring or gimmicky and crass. It seems like a no-win situation.

We both like to see what I will loosely term gay films but there are very few of these on show at the Festival these days. It is possible that the gay film festival circuit has soaked them all up (and God knows, to mix a metaphor, they certainly scrape the very bottom of the barrel with some of what they show at Queer Screen.) I have only spotted one “gay film” so far, and that is a documentary. Of course, it is not only gay films these days which have gay characters. Conversely (and I’m thinking of some of Queer Screen’s choices in recent years) not all films with gay characters come even within cooee (warning: Australian or more properly Australasian colloquialism here) of being “gay films.” It very much depends on the point of view and the intended audience.

But I digress.

This is what I have chosen so far. As I haven’t mastered columns or tables in WordPress you have to read the information below as follows: day (all in June), title, time, venue (the wonderful State Theatre, the reasonable Greater Union/GU; the pokey Dendy Opera Quays/DOQ) and country of origin.

6 The Red Awn12.40pm State China
8 Alexandra -3.20 DOQ Russia
11 Circus School – 3.50 DOQ China
12 Useless –4 pm or on Sat 14 at 1.45 – both DOQ China
13 Stop Loss – 6.30 State USA (about Iraq)
14 Children of the Silk Road – 9.00 State China/Australia (set in China)
15 Little Moth – 10 am DOQ China
16 Hope – 12.25 State Poland (Only film D has agreed to see, so far)
16 Suddenly Last Winter 8.45 GU8 Italy (this is the gay one – D may come to this)
18 Up the Yangtze! 2.15 DOQ China
19 Fujian Blue 2pm DOQ China

There may be a few more, but the SSO made a special offer to subscribers where you can take a “friend” (who for practical purposes can actually be you) to concerts for $39 in June. I was going to some of these already and enlisted some friends and befriended myself. Together with one extra concert (this Thurs), I now have concerts on 5,6,7,18,19 and 21 June.

Together with my new enterprise at the gym (I’m holding my fire on this for now blogging-wise) I don’t really see that I’ll have time to do very much work at all. Some of the skiving off in the daytime which I have allowed myself may ultimately have to yield to the call of duty.

3 Responses to “Sydney Film Festival 2008”

  1. Victor Says:

    I hope there are some gems amongst them.

    I notice you refer to Dendy Opera Quays as pokey, so I assume you’re not keen on that complex. I’ve always enjoyed going to the movies there. It is one of my favourite cinema venues.

  2. marcellous Says:

    Victor, I like a bigger and brighter screen. Maybe it’s not so bad as I remember. I’ve totally gone off the long and narrow Dendy in Newtown.

  3. marcellous Says:

    Victor, I’ve retracted “pokey.” I saw Aleksandra on Sunday and the cinema I saw it in wasn’t so bad as I remembered. Perhaps the cinemas are of differing sizes?

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