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Australia & New Zealand

40,000 Years of Dreaming, A Century of Australian Cinema

George Miller's vivid study of Australian cinema forges a link between the high-tech narratives of filmmaking and the ancient Aboriginal creation myth of "The dreaming." The film explores an extraordinary national cinema, born at the outset of the century, but barely noticed internationally until the 1970s. 1997.

A Girl's Own Story (1984)

Director: Jane Campion. A look at three girls, young teens, in the era of the Beatles. Pam lives with parents who haven't spoken directly to each other in two years, using their daughters to talk across the table to each other. Gloria wants to play games with her boyfriend Graeme and ends up pregnant after a kissless, passionless introduction to sex. Stella becomes popular and puts her friendship with Pam on hold. Meanwhile, Pam's father and other predatory men lurk in the shadows around the girls. 27 min.

Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. (1994)

Directed by Stephan Elliott. Bernadette, a drag queen, relives her theatrical glory days with two young friends on one wild road trip through rural Australia. 102 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

Age of Consent (Australia, 1969)

Directed by Michael Powell. Cast: James Mason, Helen Mirren, Jack MacGowran. Based on the life of controversial Australian artist Norman Lindsay. Lindsay is a jaded painter who heads Down Under looking for a way to revitalize his creative soul. His self-imposed exile is interrupted by Cora, an uninhibited young woman on her own journey of self-discovery. Based on the novel by Norman Lindsay.

Alexandra's Project (2003)

Directed by Rolf de Heer. Cast: Gary Sweet, Helen Buday, Bodgan Koca. Alexandra's project: It's Steve's birthday, and things can't seem to get better. After receiving a much awaited promotion, Steve returns home expecting to find his wife Alexandra and his two children waiting to surprise him. Instead, he discovers an abandoned house and a mysterious video tape that he is forced to watch. 103 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

An Exercise in Discipline - Peel (1982)

Director, Jane Campion. A father along with his son and sister is driving back home in his car. The son continiously is throwing orange peels onto the road when suddenly the father stops the car and tells his son to pick the peels. His son disagrees on that and the sister is getting nervous, because she will be going to miss her favourite TV series. Finally everyone is getting pretty angry. 9 min. ; Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

Angel at My Table (UK | Australia | New Zealand | USA, 1990)

Directed by Jane Campion. Cast: Kerry Fox, Alexia Keogh, Karen Fergusson, Iris Churn, Kevin J. Wilson. A dramatization of the true-life story of Janet Frame, New Zealand's most distinguished author. The film follows Frame along her inspiring journey, from a poverty-stricken childhood to a misdiagnosis of schizophrenia and electroshock therapy to, finally, literary fame.

BabaKiueria (Australia, 1986)

Directed by Don Featherstone. Cast: Michelle Torres, Bob Maza, Kevin Smith, Cecily Polson, Kelan Angel, Marguerita Haynes. A satire where the roles of Blacks and whites in Australia have been reversed. A fleet of black settlers arrives to colonize an area inhabited by white natives. A black reporter does an investigation into white native customs and white political issues. 30 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database
See also:

Bad Boy Bubby (Australia | Italy, 1993)

Directed by Rolf de Heer. Cast: Nicholas Hope, Claire Benito, Ralph Cotterill, Carmel Johnson. Bubby is a demented man-child kept locked his entire life in a squalid apartment by his depraved mother. But when Bubby - who can only communicate by mimicking what others say and do - escapes into the outside, he soon discovers the wonders of sex, crime, rock & roll and pizza. Will this 'mad bastard' be destroyed by the realities of our cruel world, or does a higher calling ultimately await him in the most unlikely place of all?

BeDevil (Australia, 1993)

Directed by Tracey Moffat. Three short films from Australia concerning spirits, ghosts and unexplained happenings. Mr. Chuck concerns an island community that still feels the malevolent presence of an American GI who died in the swamps nearby. Choo choo choo choo tells the story of a family who is haunted by invisible trains which run on the tracks next to their home. The final story "Lovin' the spin I'm in" tells of a woman's sense of loss when her son and his lover leave their community to escape opposition to their marriage.