Be n d i g o   Fi l m   So c i e t y 2 0 0 8

All screenings held at the R.L. Campbell Theatrette, Bendigo Library, Hargreaves St. — Screenings commence at 7:30pm unless otherwise stated. — The symbol, , denotes a film from the National Film and Video Lending Service. — Details are correct at the time of publication and the Bendigo Film Society reserves the right to substitute films should the need arise. — Some of the movies have not been classified and content may challenge, offend, or not be suitable for minors.

  Free Films Festival
    There's no charge for these films but you can join the film society at the door to access our exciting 2008 program.
Saturday 23 February 2:00 Saturday 23 February 7:30 Sunday 24 February 2:00 Sunday 24 February 7:30

  Members Only Screenings
    Each date is for a Thursday evening, 7:30 pm, unless otherwise stated.
6 March 20 March 3 April 17 April 1 May 15 May
31 May 1 June 12 June 10 July 24 July 7 August
21 August 4 September 18 September 2 October 16 October 30 October
13 November 27 November 11 December      

  Saturday 23 Feb 2:00 pm

Style Wars - Henry Chalfant, Tony Silver (70 mins, USA, 1983)
Examines New York's "hiphop" subculture - the cradle of graffiti, breakdancing and rap music movements which have rocked the international worlds of art and entertainment. Cleverly juxtaposes the viewpoints of the graffiti writers, with those of law enforcement officers and government officials. Mayor Koch advocates five days in jail for repeat "graffiti" offenders and it would appear that there doesn't seem to be much attempt by those working for the system to understand this sub-culture.


Rash - Mutiny Media (72 mins, Australia, 2007)
Rash is a contemporary story of modern urban Australia and artists making it a living host for illegal artwork called street art. This film explores the cultural value of unsanctioned public art, and graffiti's contribution to a very public dialogue. The spirit of rebellion is being channelled into street art and these visual conversations are spreading across the walls of Melbourne. Rash offers a rare insight into graffiti artists. world view. Hansen's gorgeous urban photography might have had something to do with it too. Combined with his unlimited access to the main players of the street art game (who appear in an array of masks and disguises to protect their identities) the documentary makes for good viewing.

  Saturday 23 February 7:30 pm

Fear Eats The Soul Rainer Fassbinder 1974, Germany, 94mins
Fear eats the soul is prolific German director Rainer Werner Fassbinder's unsentimental interpretation of Douglas Sirk's "All that heaven allows". In this tough blend of social realism and Hollywood melodrama, Fassbinder examines racism and class in the love affair between an elderly German widow (Brigitte Mira) and a young Arab immigrant (played by Fassbinder's lover at the time El Hedi ben Salem) which is met with hostility and derision from their family and friends. Considered the leading director of the 'new German cinema', Fassbinder had already dealt with this subject matter in his 1970 feature "The American soldier". Winner of the International critics prize, Cannes Film Festival 1974. In German with English subtitles.


Love Letters From Teralba Road Stephan Wallace (1977, Australia, 50mins) This excellent film was one of the first significant films of the revived Australian film industry to focus on working- class characters. It has a raw, painful and moving story, based on real love letters uncovered in a flat in Newcastle by director Stephen Wallace, and the first impressive screen performance from a young Bryan Brown.

  Sunday 24 February 2:00 pm

Detroit: Ruin Of A City - Michael Chanan and George Steinmetz (92 mins, UK-USA, 2006)
The film is a collaboration between Professor Chanan, who is a seasoned film-maker, and sociologist George Steinmetz, with music by the composer Michael Nyman, who is well known for his many film scores. Known as the Motor City, home of Henry Ford and the giants of the US automobile industry, of 'the brown bomber' Joe Louis, of Motown and Eminem, Detroit is nowadays in seemingly terminal decline, and is the poorest major city located in the most segregated metropolitan area in the USA. The film traces the rise and fall of the social system known by sociologists as 'Fordism', the way the city was shaped by the automobile, and its decline following the deindustrialisation which began in the 1950s. Much of the story is told through a rich variety of archive footage – of the Ford plants, mass protests of the Depression years, Diego Rivera painting his famous mural 'Detroit Industry', the struggle for trade union rights, the riots of 1943 and 1967 – through which the film charts the battle over the image of the city and its industry.


Blight - John Smith - 14 mins, UK, 1994-96
Blight was made in collaboration with the composer Jocelyn Pook. It revolves around the building of the M11 Link Road in East London, using images and sounds of demolition and road building in conjunction with the spoken words of local residents. ''A stunning montage depicts the destruction of a London street to make way for new roads. The rhythmic, emotive soundtrack is partly musical and partly a collage of the residents' voices. Shots and sounds echo and cross-link in the film's 14 minutes to reinvent a radical documentary tradition.''

  Sunday 24 February 7:30 pm

The Incredible Shrinking Man - Jack Arnold (81mins, USA, 1957)
This low-budget feature is a powerful and perverse example of American Cold War cinema. While holidaying with his wife, Scott Carey sails into a radio-active storm. He slowly becomes aware that his body is changing and he descends into despair as he continues to shrink until he is only a few inches tall. It is easy to laugh at the fears expressed in this film but the terror unleashed by the atomic bomb, and the resulting awareness of humanity's mortality, still manages to disturb and confront. Ultimately "The Incredible Shrinking Man" turns out to be a less propagandic and more humane film than much of Cold War science-fiction.


The Tragic Story with a Happy Ending - Regina Pessoa (7mins, Portugal/France/Canada, 2007)
This lyrical animation, with the charm of a fable, follows a young girl, seen to been too different by her community, as she learns to find acceptance and joy in embracing her own differences. The remarkable imaging is reminiscent of the woodblock print. The film's sound track masterfully evokes the little girl's emotional journey. The stories I like to tell are always simple ones, about people I've known. I am interested in the mysteries, the little dramas and the poetry hidden in their apparently banal lives. They are my heroes and role models.
Regina Pessoa

  March 6th

American Splendor USA, 2004 Dir.: Shari Springer Berman, 100mins
American Splendor tells the true and extraordinary story of Harvey Pekar by combining comic book adaptation, biopic, animation and documentary elements. Harvey (Paul Giamatti) relieves the monotony of his mundane job as a filing clerk in a Cleveland hospital by discussing with his fellow employees everything from jazz, rock 'n' roll and the decline of America culture to new flavours of jelly beans.

  March 20th

Tom White ∇ (Aus) 2004 Dir.: Alkinos Tsilmidos, 106 mins
'This film delivers an emotional punch'. A draftsman who leaves his home, family and life to live on the streets discovers an underbelly of society; this movie details the people Tom meets as a result of, and the reasons why a man walks away.

  April 3rd

Wild Strawberries ∇ (Swe), 1957 Dir.: Ingmar Bergman, 90mins
A bittersweet tale of an elderly college professor's physical and metaphorical journey from emotional isolation to redemption and, ultimately, personal renaissance. For the professor, the trip becomes a journey where the present is blurred by shadows from his past and where the boundary between dream and reality has been erased.

  April 17th

The Son's Room ∇ (Ita) 2001 Dir.: Nanni Moretti, 122 mins
Giovanni is a successful psychoanalyst who has to put up with the seemingly endless string of trivial details his patients ramble on about. The foundation provided by his family is profoundly rocked when his son, Andrea, dies in a scuba diving accident. Although the usual arrangements run smoothly, the emotional harm is profound.

  May 1st

Town Bloody Hall ∇ (USA) 1979 Dir.: Chris Hegedus, D.A. Pennebaker, 86mins
Cinema Verite documentary recording the dialogue on Women's Liberation presented by the Theater for Ideas at New York Town Hall in 1971. Presided over by Norman Mailer, The debate centered on speakers Diana Trilling, Germaine Greer, Jill Johnson and Jacqueline Ceballos and contribution from the floor from various individuals, including Susan Sontag. Discussion night: all welcome

  May 15th

Stalker ∇ (Rus) 1979 Dir.: Andrei Tartovsky, 152 mins
Russian director Andrei Tartovsky's story of the Zone, an area of wilderness with strange powers, is depicted by beautifully captured images of natural landscape that create an unusual science fiction film. 'Stalker is an unforgettable film experience that evokes the spiritual lucidity of Carl Dreyer and the unbridled imagination of Phillip K. Dick.'

  May 31st/June 1st

Bendigo Framed Festival
A showcase of Bendigo's films and filmmakers, supporting local talent. Expanded to include multimedia. An opportunity for filmmakers to mix and mingle. Entries close 1st May. Check the website for more details.

  June 12th

The Weeping Camel ∇ (Mongolia) 2004 Dir.: Byambasuren Davaa & Luigi Farlorni, 90 mins
A family of nomadic shepherds assists with the births of their camel herd. One of the camels has an excruciatingly difficult delivery, but out comes a rare white calf. Despite the efforts of the shepherds, the mother rejects the newborn, coldly refusing it her milk and her motherly love. The nomads send their two young boys on a journey through the desert, in search of a musician to help.

  June 26th

French New Wave Series: Cleo from 5 to 7 ∇ (Fra) 1962 Dir.: Agnes Varda, 90 mins
Two hours or so in the life of a young woman, a successful pop singer, awaiting a hospital report and fearing the worst. Her gradually sharpening perception of the world around her is presented subjectively but with convincing detail. One of the few films in which the duration of the fiction approximates actual clock time.

  July 10th

Together ∇ (Swe) 2000 Dir.: Lukas Moodysson, 107 mins
'Warmer than ten woolly jumpers'. Moodysson wrote and directed this comedy set in Stockholm, 1975, around the 'counter culture movement'. Elisabeth, a suburban housewife and mother of two, is leaving her abusive and alcoholic husband, Rolf. Her choice of refuge is her brother's commune where he is living with numerous adults, several couples and their children. The house is a 'hotbed of political thought, feminist ideals, sexual freedom and alternative thinking.'

  July 24th

Rang-e Khoda (The Colour of Paradise) ∇ (Iran) 2000 Dir: Majid Majidi, 90min
Mohammad, a boy at Tehran's institute for the blind, is taken by his father at the end of the school year to their village where his sisters and granny await. The lad longs for village life with his family, but his father is ashamed of him, wanting to farm the boy out to clear the way for marriage to a woman who knows nothing of this son. Over granny's objections, dad apprentices Mohammad far from home to a blind carpenter. Can anything bring father and son together?

  August 7th

French New Wave Series: Breathless ∇ (Fra) 1959 Dir.: Jean Luc Godard, 89 mins
Michel, on the run after shooting a policeman, is betrayed by his girlfriend, Patricia, an expatriate American. The plot is drawn from the 'B' crime thriller and Godard pays homage to Hollywood's action genres but his free approach to narrative and stylistics made this the most original and influential of the early New Wave films.

  August 21st

To Be and To Have (Fra) 2002 Dir.: Nicolas Philbert, 105 mins
How do we learn to live with others and their wishes? Director Nicolas Philibert poses this question in a village schoolhouse in Auvergne, where Georges Lopez teaches 13 children, ages ranging from about four to 12. 'As they learn sums and adjectives, with Lopez's help, they also learn to live side by side.'

  September 4th

French New Wave Series: The 400 Blows (Fra) Dir.: Francois Truffaut, 1959 95 mins
Truffaut's 400 Blows launched the Nouvelle Vague and paved the way for some of cinema's most important and influential directors. Twelve year-old Antoine Doinel has troubles at home and at school. Ignored and neglected by his parents, his relationship with his mother is further strained when he discovers that she has taken a secret lover.

  September 18th

Walkabout ∇ (Aus) 1971 Nicholas Roeg, 100 mins
Nicolas Roeg's lyrical tale about a sister and her young brother left stranded in the Australian outback having survived their father's attempt to destroy the family. They are rescued by a young Aborigine who has journeyed into the vast desert on his walkabout - a tribal initiation into manhood. 'An 'epic poem' of an odessey through a strange land, the film paints its characters in broad, mythic terms.'

One Night the Moon ∇ (Aus) 2000 Rachael Perkins, 57mins
A young girl living on an outback station with her parents, goes missing one evening after becoming enchanted by the moon. After assembling a crew of police and volunteers, the missing child's racist father will not allow Albert, a gifted Aboriginal tracker, onto his land. Paul Kelly, who co-wrote the score with Kev Carmody and Mairead Hannan, tackles the difficult character of a bigot, blinded by a prejudice that threatens the life of his daughter.

  October 2nd

Luis Bunuel Special ∇ Un Chien Andalou 1929 16mins Le charme discret de la bourgeoisie 1972 97mins
The surreal wit and social assault of 'Un Chien Andalou' is subtly synthesised in the 'The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie. Haunted by dreams and faced with arrest and jail, the bourgeoisie - six characters in search of a meal - nevertheless remain insulated, through social reflexes and rituals, from external destruction. Discussion night: all welcome

  October 16th

After life ∇ (Jap) 1998 Dir.: Hirokazu Kore-eda, 118mins
In a disused schoolhouse somewhere between heaven and earth, the newly dead wait in Limbo. They are greeted by guides who assist them in sifting through their memories to find the one defining moment of their lives that they will carry into eternity. "When his instincts are just right Kore-eda has both the perfect technique and the perfect touch for suggesting (without explicitly defining) the immanence of human experience."

  October 30th

Freaks ∇ (USA) 1932 Dir.: Tod Browning, 63mins
'This film sets up a nightmare collision between normality and abnormality when a group of circus freaks take revenge upon a beautiful trapeze artist and her strongman lover after they have tried to kill a midget.' Browning's sympathetic vision of sideshow 'freaks' presents a chilling tale.

White Zombies ∇ (USA) 1933 Dir.: Victor Halperin, 65 mins
Staring Bela Lugosi, of Dracula fame, the heroine travels to Haiti to marry but becomes ensnared by the evil designs of a satanic zombie master. This was, in effect, the first zombie movie. "This Gothic fairy tale has a strange poetic quality enhanced by the relatively sparse dialogueand effective use of music."

  November 13th

The Great Dictator ∇ (USA) 1940 Dir.: Charles Chaplin, 129mins
Chaplin plays dual roles in what was his first dialogue film: a burlesque of Hitler alias Adenoid Hynkel, and a Jewish barber who returns an amnesiac many years after an accident in World War I, unaware of the rise of Nazis. The parody of Hitler draws not only on Chaplin's genius for mime but also on his vocal resources. Chaplin's most experimental work was politically audacious at the time.

Triumph of the Will ∇ (Ger) 1934 Dir.: Leni Riefenstahl, 37mins
The film that helped create one of the most powerful propaganda movements of the twentieth century. The film was commissioned by Hitler to record the Nazi Rally of several thousand troops, party members and spectators in Nuremberg 1934. The notoriety of this film overshadows an achievement of "30 cameras backed up by a production staff of 172 people and more than 60 hours of film'.

  November 27th

Wings of Desire ∇ (Ger) 1987 Dir.: Wim Wenders, 122mins
Wings of Desire was Wender's return to the German cinema after an absence of more than ten years. Concerns two angels posted to Berlin who encounter a range of humanity including an ageing writer haunted by memories of war-devastated Germany; actor Peter Falk on location shooting a film about the Nazi era; and a trapeze artist with whom one of the angels falls in love.

  December 11th

El Presidente's Choice: Evita ∇ (USA)1996 Dir.: Alan Parker, 135 mins
Alan Parker's adaptation of the Webber/Rice Broadway musical features Madonna in the title role of Eva "Evita" Peron, Argentinean actress who married the President of Argentina (played by Jonathon Pryce) and wielded considerable political influence. ''Evita' allows the audience to identify with a heroine who achieves greatness by--well, golly, by being who she is.'

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Titles marked with this symbol are from the National Film and Video Lending Service.

February 26, 2008 web management