In the absence of an official cinematèque in Sydney, it’s a good thing the AGNSW continues to schedule fantastic programmes of free films every Wednesday and Sunday.
The latest, Outsiders in Australian Film, is a series inspired by the Australian Art Open Weekend (held on May 12-13 at the gallery). The concept is movies about marginalised people, but as always the films are selected for quality – you’re not watching out of a sense of obligation, but to be entertained.
The series kicks off on May 12 with a trio of great indigenous shorts: Tracey Moffatt’s legenday Night Cries, Ivan Sen’s thriller Wind and Darlene Johnson’s supernatural Crocodile Dreaming, with David Gulpilil and Tom E Lewis.
Time Out is especially excited by the chance to see obscure works by great Australian director Gillian Armstrong. Satdee Night is a groundbreaking short, made by Armstrong in 1973 while still at film school, about a gay man’s night out. Bingo, Bridesmaids and Braces (1988) is Armstrong’s third in a series of docs following three women at different stages of their lives.
Noni Hazlehurst stars in Glenda Hambly’s Fran (1985), a powerful story of a Perth mother doing it tough. Ray Argall’s Return Home (1991) is an underrated classic about brothers reuniting in a seaside community in Adelaide. And Jane Campion’s Sweetie (1989) might just be her masterpiece. A gothic comedy about two neurotic sisters, the film has a superb, off-kilter visual style.
We’re curious to see Rolf de Heer’s Dingo (1991) – jazz great Miles Davis plays a trumpeter who has an unlikely encounter with a kid in Western Australia that changes both their lives. But we are dying to watch Shirley Barrett’s 1987 Cherith – a black comedy short about growing up with Christian fundamentalists, screening with Mark Lewis’s oddball favourite Cane Toads: An Unnatural History.
The series winds up with a screening of all-time crime classic Animal Kingdom. Any chance to see David Michôd’s Oscar-nominated masterpiece on the big screen is one not to be missed.
Add these dates to your diary ASAP:
Crocodile Dreaming (2006) + Night Cries (1990) + Wind (1999) Sat May 12, 2pm
Dingo (1991) Sun May 13, 2pm
Cherith + Cane Toads: An Unnatural History (1987) Wed May 16, 2pm, 7.15pm; Sun May 20, 2pm
Bingo, Bridesmaids and Braces (1988) Wed May 23, noon, & Sun May 27, noon
Satdee Night (1973) + Love Letters from Teralba Road (1977) Wed May 23, 2pm, 7.15; Sun May 27, 2pm
Sweetie (1989) Wed May 30, 2pm, 7.15pm; Sun Jun 3, 2pm
Fran (1985) Wed Jun 6, 2pm, 7.15pm; Sun Jun 10, 2pm
Return Home (1990) Wed Jun 13, 2pm, 7.15pm; Sun Jun 17, 3pm
Animal Kingdom (2010) Wed Jun 20 2pm, 7.15pm; Sun Jun 24, 2pm