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Whet your appetites with these festival highlights

This year's Melbourne International Film Festival kicks off with Predestination, reteaming Australian filmmakers Peter and Michael Spierig with their Daybreakers star Ethan Hawke for a locally-shot time travel thriller based on Robert A Heinlein's 'All You Zombies'. Weirdly, it's not the only Aussie foray into time travel, as debut feature The Infinite Man marries romantic comedy with temporal chaos.

Richard Linklater's coming-of-age tale Boyhood is more epic than any Hollywood blockbuster. Shot over 12 years, it lets audiences see its young star grow up before their eyes. Want something smaller? Well, Locke barely leaves a car, as Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) drives through the night while falling apart.

Other returning favourites include wunderkind Xavier Dolan with thriller Tom at the Farm; the legendary Frederick Wiseman with his latest documentary At Berkeley; and Jodorowsky's Dune, a what-might've-been doco about Alejandro Jodorowsky's failed mid-'70s attempt to adapt Frank Herbert's novel to the screen. And music always draws festival crowds: MIFF has already announced God Help the Girl, the first feature from Belle and Sebastian's Stuart Murdoch, and We Are the Best!, Lukas Moodysson's tale of an all-girl teenage punk band in 1982 Stockholm.

But if you feel like something a little more extreme, Point and Shoot charts one man's dangerous quest to become a freelance war correspondent. R100, from the director of the odd-is-an-understatement Big Man Japan, is an inexplicable exploration of S&M. And Hard to Be a God was described by Variety as "boisterous, overstuffed, richly designed and utterly incomprehensible". How can you resist that?

MIFF 2014: The Programmers' Deep Cuts

By Martyn Pedler   |  

Melbourne International Film Festival 2014 video

Melbourne International Film Festival 2014 details

Around Melbourne, Melbourne 3000

Date 31 Jul 2014-17 Aug 2014

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