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AACTA Film Fest | Richard Sowada's Top Picks

Article by Revelation Film Festival Director Richard Sowada.


This is a rare film in so many ways. As a fuel injected, taut and tense crime thriller it stands up completely on its own. But after about five minutes of viewing when you realise this low-budget feature is shot in a single take, well, the film takes on a whole other dimension. With the camera ducking and weaving through streets and buildings, in and out of cars, through car chases and gunfights, it never stops moving and is a testament to the imaginative and sheer "guts and glory" filmmaking. In what is a major achievement in recent independent Australian cinema, WATCH THE SUNSET heralds major new production talents here in Oz.


There is so much in the title that reflects itself in this poetic feature which constantly confounds the outback genre forms that have been so strong since WAKE IN FRIGHT and SUNDAY TOO FAR AWAY. There’s such beautiful interplay between all the characters here; who struggle to communicate their feelings but whose relationship with their arid and subterranean and terrestrial world bring them together in the most unexpected of ways. Very well played and very well directed, STRANGE COLOURS can only be Australian but has such a lovely international feel.


There’s many nods to great Australian and international cinema traditions in SWEET COUNTRY, which provide the film with a place in yesterday, today and tomorrow. The film’s always surprising experimentation with time and space gives SWEET COUNTRY a real international feel as it’s in no hurry to get to its inevitable destination. Great performances, unquestionable authenticity and a ‘reason to be’ that is missing from so many films, powers SWEET COUNTRY forward, but it’s poetic heart is all in the eyes. 


WATCH THE SUNSETSTRANGE COLOURS and SWEET COUNTRY were screened in cinema in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane during September 2018 as part of AACTA Film Fest. The films will be available for members to watch online via AACTA TV until 11 October 2018.

For your complete guide to the feature films competing for a nomination for the 2018 AACTA Awards presented by Foxtel, download the Film Fest Guide here (6MB).


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Find Revelation Film Festival on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and at their website.


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