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Fashion & Costume Week @ NFSA

By Ariel Larkey 5 January 2018 0

Photo: National Film and Sound Archive website.

Starting Saturday, January 6th, and over the coming week, the National Film and Sound Archive in Canberra will be presenting a suite of Australian films and delivering a series of engaging talks concerning film fashion and sartorial celluloid.

Inevitably, some of the much-feted work of iconic Australian product Baz Luhrmann will be included. With ten films lined up across nine screenings (including a double-feature), and two standalone and FREE talks on offer, there is plenty to pique the interest of the film fashion conscious.

Opening Jan 6 with Archetypes and Fashion at 3:00 pm, NFSA curator Jenny Gall will discuss the significance of costuming in Australian film as cues for telling us about ourselves. This talk is free but bookings are essential. Easily done HERE.

Following the lecture will be a screening of the NFSA restoration of director Gillian Armstrong’s acclaimed 1982 musical comedy Starstruck. Screening to commence at 4:00 pm. Tickets only $5.

The Sapphires (2012) which premiered at Cannes to a ten-minute standing ovation and took the world by storm just a few years ago is the Sunday screening at 3:00 pm. It tells the story of an inspirational all-Indigenous real-life female singing group entertaining US troops in Vietnam during the swinging 60’s. Starring Jessica Mauboy and Deborah Mailman, director Wayne Blair became a pin-up of the comedy-musical twenty years on from Strictly Ballroom. Tickets $10/$8.

Caddie (1976) is the story of a pragmatic titular barmaid (Helen Morse) struggling to raise her two children while working in Depression-era Australia. Costume designer Judith Dorsman who also worked on The Picture Show Man and Picnic At Hanging Rock will introduce the screening followed by a discussion on screen design. Screening Monday at 3:00 pm. Tickets $10/$8.

Tuesday gets another throwback in the form of The Getting of Wisdom (1977), the coming-of-age tale of Laura Tweedle Rambotham at a Melbourne Ladies’ College in the 1900s. An early outing from director Bruce Beresford (Breaker Morant, Driving Miss Daisy) who continues to enjoy a prolific career to this day, the screening will be introduced by costume designer Anna Senior (Breaker Morant, The Odd Angry Shot, Phar Lap) who will follow the film with her own discussion on screen design. Screening Tuesday at 3:00 pm. Tickets $10/$8.

Any hump-day Wednesday woes should be duly dashed by the day’s vibrant offerings. Inject some colour into your week with an insightful lecture looking at the work of prolific film colourist Olivier Fontenay (Lion, Moulin Rouge, True Detective), led by NFSA curator Nathan Smith at 3:00 pm, promptly followed by a screening of Baz Luhrmann’s Moulin Rouge! (2001) at 4:00 pm.

Lecture is free but bookings are essential. Again, easily done HERE. Film screening $10/$8.

Thursday is also a treat with a Double-Feature Screening of Peter Weir’s classic Picnic At Hanging Rock (1975) – recent recipient of the TV treatment – and Jocelyn Moorhouse’s hit film The Dressmaker (2015) starring Kate Winslet, Judy Davis, Hugo Weaving and Liam Hemsworth. The double-feature kicks off at 3:00 pm with tickets still only $10/$8.

Need some more Baz for your Friday? A film which really requires no introduction, and one of the most popular Australian films of all time, Strictly Ballroom (1992) launched Luhrmann’s and Catherine Martin’s careers. Screening at 3:00 pm. Tickets $10/$8.

The week’s penultimate event on Saturday at 4:30 pm sees director Richard Lowenstein and producer Glenys Rowe in town to revisit and introduce Dogs In Space (1986), the artistic mosaic mess of punks and music in late 70’s Melbourne. Prior to his untimely death in 1997, the film marked one of the only film appearances of late INXS frontman Michael Hutchence as Sam, leader of the eponymous band. The screening will be followed by a discussion about the making of the film. Tickets $10/$8.

NFSA goes way back to close things out on Sunday with a premiere screening of their own restoration of the silent film The Cheaters (1929) from Paulette McDonagh. A daughter is torn between the influence of her father’s swindling ways and her newfound infatuation for one of their victims in this old-world melodrama. The screening will feature a live accompaniment and follow with a discussion from curator Tara Marynowsky about the enterprising success of the McDonaghs – a savvy and sisterly filmmaking trio who remain relevant to Australian film history.

For more information, and to book ahead for certain screenings or events, head HERE.


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