For nine days starting Friday, Winton’s Vision Splendid Outback Film Festival will showcase more than 28 homegrown movies – from classics to new releases. Here are five highlights:
1. RED BILLABONG (2016)
This is the world premiere of Luke Sparke’s actionadventure with comic-horror elements, Red Billa
bong. Set in the Outback, it’s about two estranged brothers (played by Home and Away’s Dan Ewing and Tim Pocock, star of 2010’s Dance Academy) and their friends, who are pulled into a world of mystery and lies after inheriting their grandfather’s property. As friends go missing they fear they are being stalked by someone, or something. (Sparke and actors Pocock and Sophie Don will be at the screening.)
2. BROKE (2016)
With an Australian cast including Steve Le Marquand, Max Cullen, Claire van der Boom, Steve Bastoni and Brendan Cowell, Broke centres on a former rugby league star (Le Marquand) who had it all – then blows it. It’s a funny, deeply moving drama, filmed in Gladstone, about how a disgraced athlete tries to turn his life around with the support of his No.1 fan. (Director Heath Davis and Le Marquand will be at the screening.)
3. GIRL ASLEEP (2016)
Family drama Girl Asleep, starring Tilda Cobham-Hervey, is a coming-of-age drama about Greta Driscoll, who is almost 15 and does not want to leave her childhood – until her parents throw her a surprise 15th birthday party and she is flung into a parallel universe that’s thoroughly ludicrous.
4. DINOSAUR ISLAND (2014)
In this family drama, starring Darius Williams, a vacation becomes the adventure of a lifetime when 13year-old Lucas finds himself stranded in a world filled with prehistoric creatures. While searching for other signs of life, he encounters a beautiful young girl. Together they set out on a quest to get home.
5. SPEAR (2015)
Brisbane’s Stephen Page, artistic director of Bangarra Dance Theatre, has created a dance drama starring his son Hunter Page-Lochard and other Bangarra members, along with actor Aaron Pedersen. In this groundbreaking work (a scene from which is pictured below), Page tells a coming-of-age story through movement and dance. It follows a young Aboriginal man Djali (Page-Lochard) as he journeys to understand what it means to be a man with ancient traditions who faces the hard realities of the modern world. Two Aboriginal clans from urban and remote communities must decide who will be their leader.