Our Editor Greta reveals what's on her watch list, selecting from documentary films that screened at MIFF and Antenna
Australia is lucky to host some incredible film festivals, and we love perusing programs retrospectively in anticipation of cinema and online releases. Our Editor Greta has hand-picked a few of the most eye-catching titles from the Melbourne International Film Festival and Antenna Documentary Festival programs, sure to appear soon at a cinema near you or on your favourite documentary streaming platform.
Undermined: Tales from the Kimberley
This beauty by award-winning Australian director Nicholas Wrathall dives into the resource-rich Kimberley region of Western Australia. Told through the eyes of young Indigenous leader Albert Wiggan, Senior Elder June Davis, and cattleman Kevin Oscar, Undermined depicts the David-and-Goliath-like conflict within this region - the highest percentage of Aboriginal people living on Country, residing amongst a mining goldmine.
Thrilling, political, and heart-wrenching, Undermined screened at MIFF and Antenna, with one of our producers naming it her top film of MIFF. I hope to be able to catch it somewhere soon!
People’s Republic of Desire
Another highly-regarded title coming out of this year’s MIFF, and experiencing its Sydney Premiere at Antenna, is Hao Wu’s People’s Republic of Desire. Exploring the ubiquity of live-streaming and social media culture in China, Wu’s documentary will leave you with the sort of existential discomfort and questions about the future of the human race that are usually experienced after an episode of the sci-fi series Black Mirror.
Unfortunately I missed this at MIFF, but friends have raved about it! If you are game to challenge yourself, be exposed to a very foreign subculture, and leave feeling unsettled, this one is a must-see.
The Gospel Of Eureka
Small-town Arkansas is probably not the first place you would expect to find a thriving drag scene, but in Eureka Springs, Directors Donal Mosher and Michael Palmieri find the grounds for their closing-night feature, The Gospel Of Eureka.
Juxtaposing the town’s Evangelical Christian-hosted performance of the Passion of Jesus Christ with a nearby gospel drag show, this heartfelt exploration into the coexistence of faith and flamboyance diverges from the narrative of violent exclusion that we usually associate with this part of the world.
This boundary-pushing film screened on the closing night of Antenna, and I can't wait for its general release.
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