Down Under Berlin are happy to announce a collaboration with Australian Short Film Today in 2018. Welcome to your second sneak peek of this year's program!
Now in its 26th year, Australian Short Film Today (ASFT) is an international travelling road show. Each year it showcases the very best of recent short films from Australia. Since 2017 they have screened in New York, London, Paris, Montelimar, St. Tropez, Boston, Houston, Austin and now in 2018, Berlin! We cannot wait to get this gorgeous bunch of narrative shorts on the big screen at Moviemento Kino.
Australian Susan Talbot first founded the ASFT initiative. Susan was the first host of Australian children’s morning television show Romper Room in the 1960’s before her career and family took her overseas. Throughout her life, Susan was a passionate supporter of Australian arts and she curated many Australian artistic events, exhibitions, and screenings in New York where she was based. Susan ran ASFT for 23 years until her death in 2015, and after a one-year hiatus, Chris Beale and Jill Viola took the reins and they continue the passionate support of Australian short film on an international level.
Aussie expats Chris and Francesca Beale live in New York and are huge supporters of the arts through the Chris and Francesca Beale Foundation. In 2017 they launched OZDocs, a documentary short film program under the umbrella of ASFT, and run the Australian International Screen Forum in New York, which connects Australian Feature film screen Talent with US film, television and digital production and distribution companies.
And now, let's talk about film! Here is a sneak peek at the program this year, starting with a retrospective blast from the past. There will also be an audience award for one film in this program, so come to the screening and cast your vote for your favourite!
Peel – An Exercise in Discipline
Directed by Jane Campion
"A redheaded family's drive in the countryside begins an intrigue of awesome belligerence and obstinacy."
As a special treat, the 2018 Australian Short Film Today reel starts with Jane Campion’s student film from 1982. That’s right, Jane Campion as in The Piano Jane Campion. Not only did it win Best Short Film at the AFI Awards in Australia in 1983, Peel went on to win the Palme d’Or for the best short film at Cannes Film Festival and the rest…is the history of Jane Campion.
Directed by Chloe Boreham
"Whilst at peak of pleasure with her lover, a young woman dares to face her intruding past."
Kicking off with a Best of Australian 7 Flickerfest award is The Unicorn. A French/English drama with a touch of thriller, the intimacy and curiosity of this one will reel you in. Writer, director, and actress Chloe Boreham has won a bunch of awards for this film including the Best Director award for La Licorne at the FreshFlix Film Festival in Sydney, and it just keeps getting more and more attention. Shot in Paris it also stars César Nominated Actor Paul Hamy.
Directed by Mirene Igwabi
"A 14-year-old pregnant African girl in Brisbane faces pressure to leave school to live with her much older husband from an arranged marriage."
This emotional drama has won Best Live Action Short at the Sydney Film Festival and Best Director at the St. Kilda Film Festival. Director Mirene Igwabi won a Canon Film Grant for Students of $10,000 to produce her SAE graduating film Adele. It superbly tells a story of African schoolgirl Adele, who deals with arranged marriage and teenage pregnancy, an issue that is common, but hidden, in Australia.
Directed by Gerald Lepkowski
"Sometimes small annoyances can be deadly."
This short, sharp, dark comedy is the perfect fit for this short film program. Hiccup is about one man’s attempt to stop a female train passenger from her ongoing and annoying musical marathon of hiccups. Screened at both the Cannes Antipodes and the Film Festival Jardin sur Court in Vence in France, Hiccup is enjoyable in any language.
Directed by Genevieve Clay-Smith
"A woman with an intellectual disability forms an unlikely friendship with a Sudanese refugee through their mutual love of the street dance, Krump."
A perfect comedy-drama with a lot of heart, Kill Off was screened at Flickerfest, the Adelaide Film Festival and the Heart of Gold Film Festival before being picked up by Australian Short Film Today, and you will understand why after you see it. First impressions, responsibilities, family support, and the need to just let go, we’ve all been there.
The Eleven O’Clock
Directed by Derin Seale
"The delusional patient of a psychiatrist believes he is actually the psychiatrist. As they each attempt to treat each other the session gets out of control."
This hilarious short comedy has been screened all over the world and won a bucket of awards including Best Comedy at the LA Shorts Fest, Best Screenplay at Flickerfest and Best Comedy at the Rhode Island International Film Festival. It also was nominated for an Academy Award in 2018! Not only are the script and performances entertaining, but also a special mention to the art department should be noted. It's a great film to watch.
Lost Property Office
Directed by Daniel Agdad
"Ed, the custodian, seems as lost as the property he is looking after."
What would a short film program be without an animation short? In this one, each tiny item you see in this lost property office has been hand sculpted in cardboard, by the director and artist Daniel Agdad. Agdad has won direction, art department, and design and animation awards for this film. This splendid art form goes hand in hand with a touching story in the basement office of the city’s transit Lost Property Department.
Welcome Home Allen
Directed by Andrew Kavanagh
"Four soldiers return to a home they don’t recognise and that doesn’t recognise them."
Without wanting to give too much away, this action drama from Andrew Kavanagh is actually the last of a trilogy. However, to watch it in its singularity is probably as satisfying as seeing the collective. Its won awards such as Best Short Film at both the St. Kilda Film Festival and the Guanajuato International Film Festival, as well as being screened all over the world, it’s unique perspective on displacement and disconnection in this final part of a trilogy exploring rituals through the collision of past and present.
Library Of Love
Directed by Khrob and Miranda Edmonds
"Isabelle is a hopeless romantic who spends her days as a librarian reading too many romance novels and dreaming of true love."
Ending on a high note always helps when it’s a musical! Lead actress Trilby Glover has worked internationally in shows such as Glee, Scream Queens, and The Starter Wife. She plays Isabelle, but can Isabelle pull her nose out of the books long enough to write her own love story?
Australian Short Film Today
“ Australian Short Film Today LLC is a non-profit organization dedicated to showcasing the talents of Australian filmmakers.”
Will be screened on 22 September 2018 at 6:45pm.
View the entire 2018 festival program here.
We’ll see you at the movies!
All images @Australian Short Film Today
Charmaine Gorman is an Australian actress and writer living in Berlin with her family. As a content writer and editor, she works for many clients around the world, and along with her husband, is the founder and content manager of the online travel guide My Guide Berlin