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Festival has the hottest releases

There’s no need to dream about Cannes when film buffs can preview commercially unreleased Australian and foreign movies – including a film shot near Ararat – at the 30th annual Halls Gap Film Festival from November 6-8.
This year’s festival has an impressive line-up of films from Australia, Germany, Ireland, Canada, United States and United Kingdom, which have been expertly selected by the Federation of Victorian Film Societies, a long-time supporter of the event.
A number of films will be shown for the first time in Australia – some for the first time in regional Victoria and others are straight out of major metropolitan film festivals.
Patrons will also have the opportunity to interact with the director of the documentary ‘Indonesia Calling: Joris Ivens in Australia’ John Hughes.
They’ll also be among the first to see mock-documentary Lake Mungo, a movie shot near Ararat. It tells the story of 12 months of unexplained paranormal activity following the accidental drowning death of a local teenager.
“We travelled extensively throughout Victoria looking for the right place to shoot, but when we came upon the beautiful and haunted-looking landscapes in the Grampians region, we knew we had found our location,” said director Joel Anderson.
“The area was such a perfect fit. The show-reel of footage also became a key selling document to investors who were overwhelmed by what they saw.
“Lake Mungo couldn’t have been made anywhere else, both aesthetically and practically. Low budget productions rely heavily on the goodwill and generosity of the community in which they are made and our production was no exception. We were overwhelmed by the support of the local community – before, during and after our shoot.”
Other Festival highlights include a 1960s newsreel, short films by local schools and short silent documentaries called ‘Tour Through Ballarat and Stawell to the Grampians’ (1917) and ‘A Tour Through the Grampians’ (1926) courtesy of the National Film and Sound Archive. Each year the Festival celebrates an Australian classic film and this year’s selection is the 1970s hit ‘Wake In Fright’ starring John Mellion, Chips Rafferty and Jack Thompson.
“For 30 years film buffs have made a pilgrimage to the Halls Gap Film Festival to experience the latest critically acclaimed Australian and foreign films not previously released commercially in Australia,” said festival coordinator Janet Witham.
“Each year our stalwart audiences are followed by an equally intrigued group of newcomers; all who absorb the screenings with great enthusiasm and in addition, enjoy a weekend away in the Grampians.”
The festival will be presented by the Halls Gap Film Society and Halls Gap Tourism and will be held at the Classic Cinema, Centenary Hall. It will be officially launched by one of its 1979 founders, John Muller on November 6 from 6pm. Cost is $85 for all movies, $12 for multi-pass, $13 for single show or $11 for the late show on Saturday night. Tickets available at the door or by contacting 5356 4448.

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Posted on Oct 28 2009

Posted by on Oct 28 2009. Filed under Arts Entertainment. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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