The Sydney Film Festival 2012 Complete Film Guide!

My thanks to Sydney Film Festival For This: Here’s the link:  http://www.sff.org.au/public/films/program/films-a-z/

 

 

11 Flowers

11 Flowers

In his semi-autobiographical film, Wang Xiaoshuai (Beijing Bicycle, Shanghai Dreams, Chongqing Blues) tells a moving and delicate coming-of-age tale set against China’s Cultural Revolution.

1900

1900

 

Bertolucci’s sprawling drama spans the first half of the 20th century, filtered through the lives of two men, played by Robert De Niro and Gérard Depardieu, born on the same day.

43,000 Feet

43,000 Feet

 

John Wilkins is a statistician who is sucked through the open emergency exit door of a plane mid-flight. He calculates just how long it will take before he hits the ground and uses that time to contemplate his past, present and future.

The Angels' Share

The Angels’ Share

 

The great Ken Loach returns with a bittersweet comedy about a Scottish convict who tries to turn his life around by using his rare gift – a palate and nose for fine malt whisky. Winner of the Jury Prize at Cannes.

A Simple Life

A Simple Life

With perfect performances from Andy Lau and Deanie Ip, Ann Hui’s moving film looks at the decades-long relationship between a man and a devoted family servant who suffers a stroke.

Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry

Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry

Three years in the life of Chinese artist, architect and dissident Ai Weiwei, famed for his Bird’s Nest Stadium and his subversive artworks.

Alps

Alps

The team behind Greek ‘Weird Wave’ films Dogtooth and Attenberg return with the absurd tale of a secret club whose members are paid to act as replacements for the recently deceased.

Amour

Amour

 

Straight from winning the Palme d’Or at Cannes, master Austrian director Michael Haneke (Funny Games) returns with the moving story of an octogenarian couple whose love is severely tested when one of them falls ill.

B I N O

B I N O

Through a bizarre encounter, a thrill-seeking albino boy is forced to realise an essential truth.

Bachelor Mountain

Bachelor Mountain

Tender, frank and humorous documentary about a rugged working man in an isolated mountain community in China and his hopeless pursuit of the last single woman in town.

Ballroom Dancer

Ballroom Dancer

Mesmerising documentary about a former world-champion Latin dancer and his attempt to make a comeback with a beautiful new partner – who is also his lover.

Barbara

Barbara

Actor Nina Hoss, a frequent collaborator with Berlinale-winning director Christian Petzold, is outstanding as an East German doctor, exiled to a 1980s GDR backwater as punishment for applying for an exit visa.

Beasts of the Southern Wild

Beasts of the Southern Wild

 

A Sundance and Cannes prize winner, this unforgettable feature-film debut is set in a defiant bayou community cut off from the rest of the world, as icebergs melt and prehistoric creatures descend.

Beauty

Beauty

In this fascinating study of desire, South African director Oliver Hermanus focuses on Francois, a middle-aged, Afrikaans-speaking family man who becomes obsessed with the young son of longtime friends.

Before the Revolution

Before the Revolution

 

Bertolucci’s second feature, about a young man’s rebellious love affair with his beautiful aunt, launched him to international fame, winning the critics’ prize at Cannes.

Being Venice

Being Venice

Sydney forms a brightly textured backdrop to this idiosyncratic father-daughter tale starring Alice McConnell and Garry McDonald. A touching and often humorous drama.

Black Buster

Black Buster

A delightful song-and-dance romance between a bashful teenage boy and the publican’s daughter, written and directed by S.F. Tusa, a filmmaker of Torres Strait Islander/Samoan descent.

Brave

Brave

Set in the mysterious Highlands of Scotland, the latest animated feature from Pixar follows the heroic journey of Merida (voiced by Kelly Macdonald), a skilled archer and headstrong daughter of King Fergus (Billy Connolly) and Queen Elinor (Emma Thompson).

The British Guide to Showing Off

The British Guide to Showing Off

Behind the scenes with the Alternative Miss World Show, a raucous, sexually charged and liberating costume pageant that has run since 1972.

Bully

Bully

This intensely moving and revealing documentary follows American schoolchildren and their families as they cope with the insidious problem of bullying.

Burning Hearts

Burning Hearts

 

This structurally divided narrative follows a young Ukranian model living in Tokyo as she visits her boyfriend – and is then attacked by sharply dressed yakuza.

Caesar Must Die

Caesar Must Die

 

Winner of the Golden Bear at the Berlinale, this powerful drama-within-a-drama blends fiction and documentary in the staging of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in a prison in modern-day Rome.

Captive

Captive

 

Isabelle Huppert stars as a foreign-aid worker who is kidnapped by Muslim separatists in the Philippines in this riveting drama from Brillante Mendoza (Lola, Foster Child, Slingshot).

CatCam

CatCam

 

Mr. Lee, an adopted stray cat, routinely disappeared from his North Carolina home. Intrigued by Mr. Lee’s whereabouts, his engineer owner created a camera designed to fit around his wayward cat’s neck. The resulting feline-shot images became an Internet sensation.

The Cinema According to Bertolucci

The Cinema According to Bertolucci

 

This fascinating documentary imaginatively explores the making of Bertolucci’s political epic, 1900 and features behind-the-scenes footage of the director with stars Robert De Niro, Gérard Depardieu and Donald Sutherland.

A Colt Is My Passport

A Colt Is My Passport

Cult classic from Japan’s Nikkatsu studio: an existentially poetic gangster shoot ’em up from director Takashi Nomura and starring Lee Marvin-ish anti-hero Joe Shishido.

The Comedy

The Comedy

 

Musician/filmmaker Rick Alverson’s ironically titled feature is an excoriating look at a group of privileged and reckless Williamsburg hipsters; features performances from James Murphy (LCD Soundsystem) and Gregg Turkington (“Neil Hamburger”).

Coniston

Coniston

 

In Coniston, the directors of Bush Mechanics give voice to the Aboriginal descendants of Australia’s ‘last massacre’.

Crazy Horse

Crazy Horse

Master documentarian Frederick Wiseman (La danse, Ballet) turns his impeccable gaze on Le Crazy Horse de Paris, the self-tagged ‘best nude dancing show in the world’.

Croker Island Exodus

Croker Island Exodus

The incredible journey of the Aboriginal children and their missionary carers who were trapped on Croker Island after the World War II bombing of Darwin.

Cryo

Cryo

Violence erupts among the last six survivors of a doomed space mission. With only an hour’s oxygen remaining the future of humanity hangs in the balance.

Dance Me to the End of Love

Dance Me to the End of Love

Mary and John are lovers and dancers who have embarked on a journey to the end of love. Tensions are high as they oscillate between the push to leave and the pull to stay. This is an intimate, experiential journey through the bewildering terrain of breaking up.

Dave's Dead

Dave’s Dead

Dave may have been Tom’s best mate, but this isn’t any way to behave at his funeral. Not when you’re giving the eulogy. Then again, maybe Dave wasn’t such a great mate after all…

Dead Europe

Dead Europe

 

Australia’s Tony Krawitz directs the adaptation of The Slap author Christos Tsiolkas’ award-winning novel in this searing film starring Ewen Leslie as a Sydney photographer whose father’s death prompts a return to the ancestral homeland in Greece.

Death for Sale

Death for Sale

Moroccan director Faouzi Bensaïdi’s riveting film noir about three friends and petty thieves in the port city of Tetouan who reunite to rob a jewellery-store owner.

Death of a Japanese Salesman

Death of a Japanese Salesman

The last months in the life of recently retired Japanese businessman as recorded by his filmmaker daughter: a surprisingly funny and immensely moving documentary.

Despite the Gods

Despite the Gods

 

Behind the scenes with Jennifer Lynch, David Lynch’s daughter and director of the infamous feature Boxing Helena, as she attempts to make a snake-goddess drama on location in India.

The Dreamers

The Dreamers

Bertolucci’s tribute to the revolutionary moment of May ’68 and the French New Wave is centred on a young American in Paris and his strange relationship with twin siblings.

Dr. Sarmast's Music School

Dr. Sarmast’s Music School

A man with unshakeable faith in the power of music returns to Kabul after 15 years in exile to reopen an old music school, closed down by the Taliban in 1992.

Dreams of a Life

Dreams of a Life

An inventive and haunting film about the mysterious life and death of Joyce Carol Vincent, whose remains were discovered in her London flat – three years after she died.

Dumpy Goes to the Big Smoke

Dumpy Goes to the Big Smoke

Apart from a few cats, there’s not much to like about this place.

Easy Come, Easy Go

Easy Come, Easy Go

Unseen since 1967, Peter Clifton’s recently unearthed documentary follows The Easybeats, Australia’s answer to The Beatles, as they make the journey to London, the world capital of pop. Highlights include a performance of ‘Friday On My Mind’, and footage from Olympic Studios as the band records ‘Heaven and Hell’ with producer Glyn Johns.

El Gusto

El Gusto

This documentary follows the stories of Muslim and Jewish musicians brought together by chaabi – the effervescent popular music of Algeria – before the 1954 War of Independence forced many to flee.

Excision

Excision

Severely alienated from society and haunted by violently erotic dreams, high school student Pauline hatches a bizarre plan to win approval.

Faust

Faust

 

After Hitler, Lenin and Hirohito, great Russian auteur Alexander Sokurov (Russian Ark) tackles another ‘man of power’ – Faust – in this stunning interpretation of Goethe’s play which won the Golden Lion in Venice.

Final Whistle

Final Whistle

In this suspenseful social-realist drama, an Iranian filmmaker (played by writer/director Niki Karimi) struggles against time and apathy to save a woman she barely knows from the death penalty.

First Position

First Position

In this multiple award-winning documentary, six talented young performers pursue their dancing dreams at one of the most prestigious children’s ballet competitions in the world.

For Ellen

For Ellen

Paul Dano is a hapless wannabe rock star who agrees to divorce his estranged wife, but has regrets when he discovers he must forfeit custody rights to his six-year-old daughter.

Gangs of Wasseypur Part 1

Gangs of Wasseypur Part 1

Anurag Kashyap’s epic is a thrilling, beautifully shot and extremely violent journey tracing the feud between mining magnate and politician Ramadhir Singh and the Khan family from colonial to contemporary times.

Gangs of Wasseypur Part 2

Gangs of Wasseypur Part 2

Anurag Kashyap’s epic is a thrilling, beautifully shot and extremely violent journey tracing the feud between mining magnate and politician Ramadhir Singh and the Khan family from colonial to contemporary times.

Golden Slumbers

Golden Slumbers

This haunting documentary traces the lost golden age of Cambodian cinema, which ended in 1975 when the Khmer Rouge trashed cinemas and forced filmmakers to flee or die.

Goodbye

Goodbye

SFF 2011 honouree Mohammad Rasoulof returns with the suspenseful and moving story of a young lawyer, pregnant and alone, who is determined to leave Iran.

Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (3D)

Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (3D)

 

Takashi Miike (13 Assassins, Audition, Ichi the Killer) has made a surprising samurai film – a visually beautiful and insightful exploration of samurai life beyond the swordplay.

Harold's Going Stiff

Harold’s Going Stiff

Fashioned like a BBC regional documentary, Keith Wright’s sharp, funny and surprisingly touching horror tale investigates a mystery illness turning men in the north of England into bloodthirsty ghouls.

Headshot

Headshot

 

Pen-ek Ratanaruang brings his trademark bravura to this reinvention of the hitman genre – a ‘Buddhist noir‘. A hitman disguised as a monk is shot in the head and awakens to a world turned upside down.

Hemel

Hemel

 

Beautifully shot and sexually frank feature about a young Dutch woman’s seemingly never-ending quest to determine the difference between sex and love, and her complicated relationship with her father.

High Tech, Low Life

High Tech, Low Life

This timely documentary profiles two bloggers as they battle the infamous Great Firewall of China – travelling the country, mobiles and laptops at the ready, to report on the unreported.

The Hunter

The Hunter

 

The Hunter is a stop-motion sand animation about a lone hunter who undertakes a search for a missing boy deep in the snow-covered mountains. As he travels he is forced to make decisions that will forever change his relationship with the wilderness he has feared.

Holy Motors

Holy Motors

 

French filmmaker Leos Carax took Cannes by storm with this intoxicating blend of science fiction, performance and subversive weirdness, starring a brilliantly vaudevillian Denis Lavant; the inspired supporting cast includes Kylie Minogue and Eva Mendes.

I, Anna

I, Anna

A noir thriller with a twist. Anna (Charlotte Rampling), a divorcée looking for romance, finds herself embroiled in a murder mystery, and attracted to chief detective Bernie (Gabriel Byrne).

The Imposter

The Imposter

 

Truth is stranger than fiction in this documentary about a Texas family convinced that a Frenchman found on the streets of Spain is, somehow, their long-lost son.

Jai Bhim Comrade

Jai Bhim Comrade

 

Acclaimed director Anand Patwardhan’s documentary, 14 years in the making, about the 1997 killing of 10 unarmed Dalit (‘untouchable’) protesters by police in Mumbai.

Jeff, Who Lives at Home

Jeff, Who Lives at Home

 

Gentle, warm-hearted, offbeat comedy about an aimless 30-something man (Jason Segel) who is unemployed, lives in his mother’s basement and believes he is destined for something special. Co-stars Susan Sarandon, Ed Helms and Judy Greer.

Julian

Julian

Julian is an attentive and precise nine-year-old, who promptly informs the teacher when he learns of misbehaviour. Exasperated by the interruptions, the teacher sends him off to the headmaster and Julian doesn’t find that fair at all. What is to become of such a boy?

Just the Wind

Just the Wind

Award-winning director Bence Fliegauf looks at the life of the Romani people in Hungary in this powerful slice of social realism about racism and the isolating effects of poverty.

Killer Joe

Killer Joe

 

A Texas drug dealer hires a cop and part-time hitman (Matthew McConaughey) to murder his mother for insurance money in this sleazy noir from director William Friedkin (The French Connection, The Exorcist).

Killing Anna

Killing Anna

 

A unique approach to the end of an affair: a broken-hearted filmmaker records his attempts to cope with the end of his first live-in relationship.

The King of Pigs

The King of Pigs

A daring, disturbing and violent animated film about bullying, social status and class difference, marking a brave new direction for Korean animation.

L

L

 

Drolly funny Greek ‘Weird Wave’ film about a driver, referred to as the Man, who lives and works in his car and spends all his time sourcing the finest honey for a narcoleptic – occasionally meeting his wife and children in a carpark.

La Luna

La Luna

Jill Clayburgh gives an extraordinarily fearless performance in this provocative, taboo-busting family drama as an American opera singer on tour in Italy with her teenage son.

Lack of Evidence

Lack of Evidence

 

Simple, flowing animation and voiceover combine in this multilayered story that describes the experience of a Nigerian child who survives the ritualistic murder of his twin.

Lambs

Lambs

 

Jimmy, a big-hearted 14-year-old boy, is facing a difficult decision – stay in his abusive home to protect his younger siblings, or leave to start a new life of his own.

Last Call at the Oasis

Last Call at the Oasis

 

From the team behind An Inconvenient Truth and Food, Inc. comes an eye-opening, energetic examination of our catastrophic usage of the world’s most valuable resource – water.

The Last Dogs of Winter

The Last Dogs of Winter

Documentary chronicling the story of the unconventional founder of a shelter for Canadian Eskimo Dogs and the young New Zealand TV star who volunteers to help him.

The Last Emperor

The Last Emperor

Bertolucci’s epic about the extraordinary life of Chinese Emperor Pu Yi was honoured with nine Academy Awards®, including Best Picture.

The Last Ice Merchant

The Last Ice Merchant

 

Twice a week for the last 55 years, Baltazar Ushca has trekked to the glacier on top of Chimborazo – an altitude of 4,800 metres – to chip ice to sell. It’s a dying tradition and he’s now the last ice merchant in Ecuador.

Last Tango in Paris

Last Tango in Paris

Marlon Brando is electrifiying in this controversial classic about a middle-aged American man pursuing an anonymous sexual liason with a young woman (Maria Schneider).

The Law in These Parts

The Law in These Parts

This brilliant and compelling documentary, a Grand Jury Prize winner at Sundance, explores the legal framework for Israel’s long-term military ‘rule of law’ in the Occupied Territories.

Letter Tape

Letter Tape

 

An inventive documentary that uses an antiquated recording and contemporary animation to tell the story of two lovers separated by time zones and several oceans.

Liberal Arts

Liberal Arts

Josh Radnor wrote, directed and stars in this charming romantic comedy in which a disillusioned 35-year-old man, on a visit to his former college, falls for a beautiful and intelligent student (Elizabeth Olsen).

Livid

Livid

Vampire ballerinas and some particularly nasty ghosts run amok in this scary and visually stylish slice of gothic horror.

The Loneliest Planet

The Loneliest Planet

A young engaged couple’s idyll in the Caucasus Mountains of Georgia is interrupted by a momentary misstep that threatens to undo everything they believed about each other and themselves.

Lore

Lore

Australian director Cate Shortland tells the story of five German children left to fend for themselves in the aftermath of World War II, and the Jewish survivor who helps them.

Love Lasts Three Years

Love Lasts Three Years

This charming comedy follows the misadventures of a literary critic who meets an irresistible and inaccessible beauty and tries to hide the fact that he wrote a cynical bestseller denouncing love.

Luminaris

Luminaris

 

Whimsical and gently surreal, this short combines pixilation and stop-motion animation techniques to illustrate the tale of a factory worker in a town where sunlight is controlled by a light-bulb manufacturer.

Mabo

Mabo

Twenty years after the historic Mabo decision, the moving life story of Eddie and Bonita Mabo comes to the screen in a feature directed by Rachel Perkins (Bran Nue Day) and starring Jimi Bani and Deborah Mailman.

The Maker

The Maker

A strange creature races against time to make the most important and beautiful creation of his life.

Maori Boy Genius

Maori Boy Genius

Six feet five, 16 years old and pegged a leader (perhaps even a future New Zealand prime minister) since birth, Ngaa Rauuira Pumanawawhiti – the subject of this inspiring documentary – is a name to watch out for!

Marina Abramović: The Artist Is Present

Marina Abramović: The Artist Is Present

 

Marina Abramović’s blockbuster 2010 exhibition at New York’s Museum of Modern Art forms the backbone of this mesmerising and eloquent documentary on the radical performance artist’s life and work.

Marley

Marley

The definitive documentary on the legendary king of reggae, featuring interviews with fellow musicians, friends and family; concert footage and countless archival pics; and, of course, a soundtrack of timeless hits.

The Meaning of Style

The Meaning of Style

 

Through a series of lyrical vignettes, Malaysian skinheads provide perches for butterflies, and drape themselves languidly around a decorative urban landscape.

Miss Bala

Miss Bala

This stylish, action-packed thriller chronicles three days in the life of a beautiful young girl drawn into a vicious war of attrition between Mexico’s violent drug gangs and the police.

Missing in the Land of the Gods

Missing in the Land of the Gods

In 2005, a young Australian named Ryan Chambers went missing in northern India; six years later, we follow his parents as they search for him one more time.

Modest Reception

Modest Reception

This twisted black comedy follows a mysterious couple from Tehran as they distribute large bags of money in an impoverished mountain border town – only to humiliate the recipients.

Monsieur Lazhar

Monsieur Lazhar

This Oscar®-nominated drama is the moving story of a group of schoolchildren coming to terms with the adult world, and the inspirational substitute teacher from Algeria who transforms their lives.

Moonrise Kingdom

Moonrise Kingdom

The opening film at Cannes, Wes Anderson’s charming Moonrise Kingdom has two 12-year-olds fall in love and run away together into the wilderness. With Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray and Frances McDormand.

Mosquita y Mari

Mosquita y Mari

This fresh and lively debut feature follows two Chicana high-school girls in L.A. – one a dedicated student, the other a beautiful rebel. A shaky friendship develops, tinged with budding sexual attraction.

My Brother the Devil

My Brother the Devil

A masterful urban drama about two brothers of Egyptian descent trying to negotiate the mean streets of Hackney.

Neighbouring Sounds

Neighbouring Sounds

In this assured and astonishing feature-film debut, life in a middle-class neighbourhood in present-day Recife, Brazil, takes an unexpected turn after the arrival of an independent private-security firm.

Night Shift

Night Shift

 

In this understated but moving short, the introverted protagonist avoids both conflict and companionship as she moves quietly through the late-night portion of her second continuous shift as an airport cleaner.

Not Suitable for Children

Not Suitable for Children

Opening Night Film: Set in Sydney, this comedy follows a trendy trio of housemates enjoying their hedonistic twenties – until one is diagnosed with cancer and becomes obsessed with having a child before it’s too late.

OK Breathe Auralee

OK Breathe Auralee

 

Auralee wants a baby and will go to great lengths for it.

OK, Good

OK, Good

Stuck in a soul-destroying rut of unsuccessful auditions for banal TV advertisements, actor Paul Kaplan becomes a ticking time bomb of inner rage.

On the Road

On the Road

Jack Kerouac’s legendary work is brought to the big screen with respect and verve by Walter Salles, featuring fine performances from Sam Riley, Garrett Hedlund, Kristen Stewart, Kirsten Dunst and Viggo Mortensen.

Once Upon a Time in Anatolia

Once Upon a Time in Anatolia

Turkish master Nuri Bilge Ceylan takes on the police procedural, and the result is a beautifully layered narrative in which every line of dialogue contributes to solving the puzzle.

Our Homeland

Our Homeland

 

Powerful story about a Japanese family of Korean origin who are torn apart by ideology as they welcome one of their own after 25 years in a ‘repatriation program’.

Paramedico

Paramedico

 

Filmmaker, author and paramedic Benjamin Gilmour takes us on a revealing ride with ambulance teams from Lahore, Honolulu, Mexico City and Venice.

The Parade

The Parade

Politically incorrect and absolutely hilarious, this Serbian comedy has a homosexual veterinarian and a thuggish, homophobic war veteran uniting to protect Belgrade’s gay-pride parade.

Perished

Perished

Can a survivor of a zombie apocalypse in Australian suburbia outrun the undead hordes surrounding his house and find the woman he loves?

The Perfect Fit

The Perfect Fit

 

The world of professional ballet dancing is seen through the eyes of a burly shoemaker, who is as dedicated in his own way as the performers who wear his handcrafted ballet slippers.

Pink Ribbons, Inc.

Pink Ribbons, Inc.

Provocative documentary that exposes problems with the ubiquitous pink-themed corporate fundraising for breast cancer research.

La pirogue

La pirogue

Presented in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard competition, this is the moving story of a group of Senegalese men who set off for Europe on a simple fishing boat, hoping for a better life.

Play It Like Godard

Play It Like Godard

Delightful and hilarious French mockumentary about a celebrated film auteur and Palme d’Or winner who is still in high school – ‘a mixture of Jean-Luc Godard and Justin Bieber’.

Playing Ghost

Playing Ghost

 

A little girl, striving to attract her melancholy mother’s attention, occupies herself by playing silly games that have less-than-benign results.

Policeman

Policeman

Split into two colliding narratives, this taut political drama about class conflict in Israel pits the leader of an elite anti-terrorist unit against a pair of militant anarchists.

Polisse

Polisse

French star turned writer/director Maïwenn’s third feature is a tough-as-nails drama about the hardened cops who work in the CPU (Child Protection Unit) on the mean streets of Paris.

Postcards From the Zoo

Postcards From the Zoo

Maverick Indonesian director Edwin creates a dreamlike world in this story about a girl raised in a zoo whose life changes when she meets a handsome cowboy with magical powers.

Rampart

Rampart

Gritty tale about a trigger-happy LA cop (Woody Harrelson) whose professional and personal lives spiral out of control after he is caught on tape beating a suspect.

Rauch und Spiegel

Rauch und Spiegel

Melbourne filmmaker Nick Moore takes a one-minute trapeze routine and transforms it into a baffling stage trick, a music box automaton and a mesmerising carousel. This is where sleight-of-hand meets spectacle and circus becomes cinema.

Retaliation

Retaliation

Yakuza lieutenant Kojiro walks straight out of a stint in jail and into a power struggle between his old gang and newly emerging rivals in this Nikkatsu cult classic from 1968.

Rippled

Rippled

In a dystopian landscape, a new breed of creature evolves. Painstakingly animated frame by frame, the piece is ‘all shot in camera, by real people, in the real world, using long exposure techniques’.

A Royal Affair

A Royal Affair

 

Mads Mikkelsen (the villain in Casino Royale) swaps suits for satin in this sumptuous Berlinale winner, playing a radical commoner who stirs up revolt in the court of a mad Danish king and his beautiful teenaged queen.

Safety Not Guaranteed

Safety Not Guaranteed

 

“WANTED: Someone to go back in time with me. This is not a joke. You’ll get paid after we get back. Must bring your own weapons. Safety not guaranteed. I have only done this once before.”

Searching for Sugar Man

Searching for Sugar Man

Winner of the World Cinema Audience Award at Sundance, this film traces the improbable-but-true story of ’70s singer-songwriter Rodriguez, a Detroit soul dude who found an enthusiastic audience in Apartheid-era South Africa.

Season of the Sun

Season of the Sun

 

A causeless and clueless college boy meets a poor little rich girl. Boy seduces girl. Boy abandons her when she falls pregnant. This cult classic from Nikkatsu marks the start of the postwar modern Japanese pop, youth and cinematic new waves.

The Sheltering Sky

The Sheltering Sky

John Malkovich and Debra Winger are a wealthy couple who leave the structure of their lives in New York for a sojourn in North Africa in Bertolucci’s visually stunning adaptation.

She.Say

She.Say

After seeing her husband put in jail for domestic violence, Leela (Leah Purcell) has a big decision to make on his pending return, influenced by differing opinions from her two youngest children and her three best friends. What will Leela do?

Shut Up and Play the Hits

Shut Up and Play the Hits

 

This feature-length documentary captures the occasion of LCD Soundsystem’s epic four-hour farewell concert at New York’s Madison Square Garden, including intimate behind-the-scenes footage of frontman James Murphy. (Presented in partnership with Vivid Sydney)

Side by Side

Side by Side

A fascinating look at the shift from celluloid to digital and its impact on moviemaking: Keanu Reeves in conversation with film-industry heavyweights including James Cameron, George Lucas and Christopher Nolan.

Sing Me the Songs That Say I Love You - A Concert for Kate McGarrigle

Sing Me the Songs That Say I Love You – A Concert for Kate McGarrigle

This rousing tribute to the late Canadian singer-songwriter, recorded at New York’s Town Hall, features her famously musical children, Martha and Rufus Wainwright, and friends including Emmylou Harris and Norah Jones.

SNAILS!

SNAILS!

 

Nice guy Joey hopes to re-ignite his romance with ex-girlfriend Eva at an outdoor rock festival. Things look promising before a giant snail rudely gatecrashes the party.

The Sound of Old Rooms

The Sound of Old Rooms

Sandeep Ray’s exquisite documentary, filmed over 20 years, traces the life of Sarthak, an Indian man who juggles his desire to be a poet with the practicalities of raising a family.

Snow in Paradise

Snow in Paradise

Filmed in Aitutaki, in the Cook Islands, this film is set in the 1970s and explores a day in the life of a young island girl as her paradise is shattered by the nuclear testing that changed the Pacific forever. Selected for the 2012 Berlinale.

The Spider's Stratagem

The Spider’s Stratagem

Bertolucci’s film about a man investigating the 30-year-old mystery of his anti-Fascist father’s death in the director’s native Emilia Romagna region is inspired by a Jorge Luis Borges short story.

Step Up to the Plate

Step Up to the Plate

A fascinating foodie film that follows French master chef Michel Bras over a pivotal year as he hands the reins of his legendary three-Michelin Star hotel-restaurant to his son Sébastien.

Stray Cat Rock: Sex Hunter

Stray Cat Rock: Sex Hunter

 

Nikkatsu’s battle-of-the-sexes flick has all the hallmarks of the films Quentin Tarentino homaged in Kill Bill: girls in hot pants with swords, psyched-out camera tilts, pulse zooms and a J-Pop soundtrack.

Tabu

Tabu

When an old lady dies in Lisbon, her maid and neighbour learn of her past, in a beguiling tale of love and crime in an Africa straight from adventure films.

Tatsumi

Tatsumi

The life and seminal work of Japanese comics artist Yoshihiro Tatsumi is celebrated in Eric Khoo’s dynamic and vital film, interweaving his classic stories with autobiographical detail.

The Temple

The Temple

A divine manifestation sets a community abuzz, leading to the construction of a temple that threatens the innocence of an Indian village in this humorous and irreverent take on religion and politics.

The Warped Forest

The Warped Forest

Dreamt up by Japanese cult figure Shunichiro Miki, this beautifully designed and photographed excursion into a surreal parallel world is a strong candidate for weirdest movie of the year.

The Wilding

The Wilding

When juvenile inmate Malcolm is offered a chance at parole, he is torn between his chance for freedom and protecting the one he loves.

The World Before Her

The World Before Her

This absorbing documentary dramatically juxtaposes two Indian organisations: the Miss India pageant, and Durgha Vahini, the women’s arm of the Hindu fundamentalist movement.

Today

Today

 

Magical-realist story about a Senegalese man (played by poet Saül Williams) who wakes up one morning knowing that this day will be his last.

Twilight Portrait

Twilight Portrait

This story about a privileged social worker who is gang raped by three policemen explores themes of power, revenge and violence in a searing look at contemporary Russian society.

Undefeated

Undefeated

Winner of this year’s Academy Award® for Best Documentary, this is the spirited story of the Manassas Tigers, a down-on-their-luck high-school football team from inner-city Memphis.

Under African Skies

Under African Skies

 

Paul Simon reunites with the South African musicians who collaborated on his 1986 megahit Graceland – and relives the controversy the album stirred upon release.

Unravel

Unravel

An Indian woman in the sleepy northern town of Panipat ponders the ways of the world as she unravels unwanted clothes from the West – recycling them back into yarn.

Utopia

Utopia

 

The latest work from Australian political satirist, cartoonist and filmmaker Bruce Petty contemplates our efforts to imagine the future using animated and live-action sequences, fiction and reality.

Valley of Saints

Valley of Saints

Set on Dal Lake in strife-torn Kashmir, this film tells an unlikely story of love between a working-class boatman and a beautiful scientist, while raising important environmental issues.

¡Vivan las Antipodas!

¡Vivan las Antipodas!

Highly imaginative and visual documentary that explores the earth by ‘drilling’ through it, pairing various locations around the world with their exact antipodian opposites.

The Virgin, the Copts and Me

The Virgin, the Copts and Me

A funny and moving documentary that chronicles a French-Egyptian first-time director’s fumbling attempts to make a film about Virgin apparations in Egypt.

Where Do We Go Now?

Where Do We Go Now?

Lebanese writer/director/star Nadine Labaki’s clever mix of melodrama, musical and social satire, set in a mountain village where the women cross boundaries and band together to keep the peace.

Whores' Glory

Whores’ Glory

This stylish and hard-headed look at the commodification of sex from award-winning director Michael Glawogger explores the lives of prostitutes and their clients in three very different locations.

Winter Nomads

Winter Nomads

Exquisitely beautiful and drolly funny look at the lives and vanishing traditions of migrant shepherds in rural Switzerland.

Woody Allen: A Documentary

Woody Allen: A Documentary

This riveting look at the creative life of the multi-hyphenate filmmaker is packed with clips and interviews with a plethora of stars, his mother and, of course, the man himself.

Wuthering Heights

Wuthering Heights

Veering some distance from costume-drama clichés, Andrea Arnold’s gritty take on Emily Brontë’s classic novel depicts all the harshness of the Yorkshire moors and the rough existence of its inhabitants.

Yardbird

Yardbird

A young girl who lives in a remote wrecking yard takes on the local bullies when they turn up and torment her father.

The Zen of Bennett

The Zen of Bennett

 

Behind the scenes with icon Tony Bennett as he records a Grammy-winning album of duets with diverse guests including Aretha Franklin, Willie Nelson and the late Amy Winehouse.