If you’re planning what to do this weekend, why not get together with your pals and talk about all of the fun activities you can do at this year’s Adelaide Film Festival? We have karaoke, singalongs, a quiz night and – not to mention – a range of exciting gala events for you to lock into your diaries.
There’s something for all budgets, so get the group together – these will be fun.
Muriel’s Wedding SING-A-LONG Special
Muriel’s Wedding isn’t just one of the most popular Australian films ever made. It’s also one of the most disarmingly honest. It makes us want to laugh and cry at the same time. Writer-director PJ Hogan introduces Muriel Heslop (Toni Collette, magnificent) as a self-hating misfit from a severely dysfunctional family who believes her only hope of finding happiness is to get married. The terrain here, and throughout the film, is dark. Muriel’s corrupt politician father, Bill (Bill Hunter), is a cruel man who calls Muriel useless and treats his wife, Betty (Jeannie Drynan, unforgettable), with a contempt that’s destroyed her soul. Muriel’s lack of self-esteem begins at home and is compounded by her vain, shallow and cruel “friends.” Balancing lacerating humour with deeply moving drama, Hogan’s screenplay follows Muriel to the depths of despair and self-delusion before sending her on a simply fabulous journey of self-discovery. The glowing feminist heart of the film is Muriel’s friendship with old high school acquaintance Rhonda Epinstalk (Rachel Griffiths, dynamite). It’s nothing short of thrilling to watch this Down Under Thelma and Louise bust free from rotten men (a notable exception being Brice Nobes played by Matt Day) and narrowly-defined gender roles in their search for something better. Set to the infectious beat of ABBA songs that Muriel adores, Muriel’s Wedding is an hilarious, hearfelt, sad, uplifting and altogether brutally brilliant Australian dramatic comedy. Its place in the pantheon of Australian cinema is forever assured.
I Used to be Normal: A Boyband Fangirl Story
One Direction, Backstreet Boys, Take That…and the granddaddy of all boy bands, The Beatles: all have inspired fierce devotion on the part of surging armies of young women. Scenes of screaming, hysterical fans are much loved by our media, but hey, let’s stop putting the girls down! Melbourne documentarist Jessica Leski interviews three generations of fans who speak candidly about the vital role boy band obsession has played in addressing important issues in their lives. Spanning continents and cultural backgrounds, Leski’s film is full of surprises (there is even an explanation of Boyband Theory, and Take That fan Dara reflects memorably on her obsession with Gary Barlow). If you’ve ever secretly or openly loved a Boyband, or just want to know what all the fuss is about, don’t miss this thoughtful, touching, funny and joyous celebration of the positive power of fandom.
Laneway Cinema Party
Celebrating the creative cluster of downtown Port Adelaide, ADL Film Fest is teaming up with Fontanelle, Mixed Creative and Port Community Arts Centre to turn Town Hall Laneway AKA Black Diamond Laneways into a cinema wonderland.
Lighting up the screen will be a kaleidoscope of art and cinema plus tunes by DJ TR!P. The evening will include DJ TR!P presenting a live score to Raymond Longford’s 1918 classic The Woman Suffers plus short films and other screen wonders. Drinks and gastronomic delights will be available for purchase. Bring your dancing shoes.
Ultimate Film Quiz Night
The Adelaide Film Festival Ultimate Quiz Night returns! Co-hosted by not the real Margaret and David Adelaide’s party liaisons, Mark Kamleh and Courtney Duka, with special Adelaide Film Fest guests. This is a fundraiser for the Adelaide Film Festival Emerging Curators program and as our guest you’ll receive: a bloody good quiz night, one drink on arrival, delicious food and drinks available for purchase, games and prizes, afterparty with DJs (Skin Contact and Mr. Whiskers) and a free ticket to any standard daytime session at the Adelaide Film Festival.
When 13-year-old Joan Jett first plugged in her electric guitar she was told ‘girls don’t play rock’n’roll.’ Yeah, right. Five years later Joan Jett and her band The Runaways recorded the smash hit Cherry Bomb. After The Runaways demise Joan and creative partner Kenny Laguna launched Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, only to be rejected by 23 record labels. Their response? A string of hits including the worldwide smash I Love Rock’n’Roll. Joan Jett’s career as one of the great women of rock continues to this day. Kevin Kerslake’s fabulous documentary tells the story of the girl from Wynnewood, Pennsylvania who wanted to make noise and would let nothing stop her. Jett and a to-die-for gallery of guests including Iggy Pop, Debbie Harry, Pete Townshend and Kristen Stewart (who played Jett in the 2010 feature The Runaways) reveal Jett’s status as a rock icon, feminist heroine and passionate supporter of causes beyond the music world. Raucous, intimate and packed with fantastic archival footage, Bad Reputation is a hugely entertaining profile of a music pioneer whose uncompromising spirit and kick-ass attitude remain undiminished. ‘Put another dime in the jukebox, baby.’ Oh yeah.
The Woman and the Car
Kate Blackmore looks at motherhood and mobility, film and feminism, through the prism of Margaret Dodd’s classic short This Woman is Not a Car (1982). Blackmore and Dodd are both Adelaide-born artists, making films a generation apart. Sitting in an FX Holden, Blackmore talks to Dodd, and her friends, about the context in which her film was made. Like many of her generation, Dodd yearned for a Holden. For suburban women in the 1960s, owning a car was a form of liberation not often realised. Shaped by her experiences, Dodd’s film is a nightmarish vision of a young mother trapped in suburbia. The conversations between the two artists are intercut with footage of 70s Adelaide, interviews with Holden enthusiasts and ex-factory workers, and a car procession at Adelaide’s last-remaining drive-in cinema. Blackmore’s film, The Woman and The Car is a close-up look at how Dodd, Adelaide and more broadly, the Australian national identity have been influenced by the presence of the car. The recent closure of the Holden factory in Adelaide marks the end of an era for the ‘all-Australian’ vehicle and an extra layer of poignancy when considering the resonances of Dodd’s work on the way we see ourselves.