Tarantino, LaPaglia and Ramos-Horta set for MIFF

06 July, 2009 by IF

Press release from Limelight PR

The 2009 Melbourne International Film Festival launched its entire program this evening, announcing that Anthony LaPaglia and Timor-Leste President, Dr. José Ramos-Horta along with the full cast will be attending opening night presented by Victoria University for the World Premiere of Balibo on Friday 24 July.


Deborra-Lee Furness, Frances O’Connor and Miranda Otto along with filmmaker Ana Kokkinos will also attend the festival for the World Premiere of Blessed, on Saturday 25th July and Quentin Tarantino will walk the red carpet at the Australian Premiere of Inglourious Basterds on Sunday August 2nd at a special gala event.

“This year but we are going out, all guns blazing, with a program full of depth, variety and originality, not to mention our notable line-up of guests!” said Executive Director Richard Moore.

Amongst an abundance of visitors, MIFF’s other key guests include; French filmmaker Claire Denis with her new film 35 Shots of Rum; fresh-faced star Carey Mulligan from the coming-of-age drama An Education; Michael Nyman, the minimalist composer known for his many collaborations with Peter Greenaway, Nicolas Winding Refn, director of the extraordinary Bronson, and Alexis Dos Santos, director of the UK indie film Unmade Beds.

This year’s crop of titles include the latest hot titles from the Cannes croisette – including Michael Haneke’s Palme d’Or winner, The White Ribbon, the award winning Greek film Dogtooth, Lars Von Trier’s controversial Antichrist, and the film with the best title in the festival No One Knows about Persian Cats by Iranian filmmaker Bahman Ghobadi.

MIFF prides itself on its original programming and this year has introduced a number of new spotlights.

“As part of our original programming this year we are diving again into Australian film culture. Last year, in conjunction with ACMI we presented a series of Ozploitation movies – a move that has led to a re-evaluation of these films and their place in Australia’s cultural history. This year we present an equally gritty and energetic program stream – Punk Becomes Pop: The Australian Post-Punk Underground”, said Festival Director Richard Moore.

Inspired by the restoration of Richard Lowenstein’s1986 Dogs in Space, this eight-session program will showcase the audacious and fun filmmaking of the late 70s/early 80s and its relationship with the post-punk music scene, featuring bands such as The Birthday Party, , Essendon Airport and Models. Also featured will be a brand new doco on the scene We’re Livin’ On Dog Food (made by Richard Lowenstein) and the Aussie cult classic Going Down, by Haydn Keenan.

Other new spotlights include:

· Young Blood – A collection of films devoted to the antics (sometimes evil and twisted, sometimes born out of curiosity and necessity) of young teenagers and children. Featuring films that are very much for an adult audience. Highlights include; Hansel & Gretel, Korea’s modern day version of the Brothers Grimm fairytale; and My Suicide in which a 17-year-old media student suddenly becomes the most talked-about kid in school when he announces, for a class project, that he intends to kill himself on camera.

· Vengeance Is Mine explores the nature of revenge from the personal and disturbing to the blackly hilarious and political. Highlights include; Festival guest Nicolas Winding Refn’s Bronson, about Britain’s most notorious inmate; and Louise-Michel, a scattershot satire, liberally mocking rampant capitalism, greenies, 9/11 conspiracy theorists and illegal immigrants.

· States of Dissent collect together several powerful documentaries on issues pertaining to human rights all over the world. They offer horrific visions (not without hope) from dissident states around the world. Highlights include Kimjongilia, which exposes the humanitarian and human rights disaster of North Korea, and Burma VJ, which follows the Democratic Voice of Burma as they risk their lives to show the world what is really happening in repressive state.

· Tribute to Anna Karina – The embodiment of the ’60s French New Wave, Anna Karina possessed the kind of screen presence that both defined and wooed a generation. As well as her work in front of the camera, she has written several novels, directed two films and recorded music with the likes of Serge Gainsbourg and Philippe Katerine. In 2009 MIFF is proud to present a retrospective of her work and to welcome her as a guest of the Festival.

· Arts & Minds – This new spotlight is all about celebrating the creative spirit (in all its complexities), as personalities from diverse areas of artistic endeavours are placed under the documentary microscope. Watch out for Shadow Play – The Making of Anton Corbijn, a portrait of the most in-demand photographer and music video director today and the making of his first feature film Control.

· The Primal Screen looks at the mechanics and the inspiration behind the very art form that MIFF celebrates – film! MIFF recommends Little Joe which looks back on Joe Dallesandro’s wild and eclectic life, from juvenile delinquent and hustler to his Warhol discovery and countercultural sex symbol.

· Eros + Massacre is a peek into the heady days of the Japanese counterculture of the late 60s, featuring a stylistically diverse group of films from classic sexy art-house to militant documentary and cult freak-fest.

· The End of Europe: New Balkan Cinema – In MIFF’s never ending search for new frontiers of world cinema our geographical focus on Romanian cinema last year has expanded to include cinema from Serbia, Bosnia, Albania and Bulgaria. Highlights include Festival guest Javor Gadev’s genre hit Zift, and director Aida Begić a complex and delicate Snow.

The full program guide is available in The Age on July 10 when single session tickets go on sale. For further information visit melbournefilmfestival.com.au