OzAsia Showcase of Asian-Australian filmmakers in Adelaide

October 26, 2019
Films by three emerging Asian-Australian independent filmmakers exploring concepts of identity, place, and belonging are being showcased in Adelaide.

A film series of emerging directors, using cinema to explore elements of the Asian-Australian experience, will screen at the Mercury Cinema in Adelaide.

The event is part of the OzAsia Festival – one of Australia’s pre-eminent contemporary arts festivals engaging with Asia.

For two weeks in November each year, the programme presents a bold and varied line-up of boundary-pushing performances and art.

OzAsia, which screens the films in partnership with Flinders University, has been running for 12 years. It aims to gives new performers and voices a forum. Hopefully this showcase will become an even bigger launchpad for diverse voices in film.

All the works selected use forms of experimental art to explore aspects of migrant identity in distinctive ways – in keeping with the focus of the South Australian Festival.

Gems from the 2019 line-up include new films by Matthew Victor Pastor and Allison Chhorn, who have both had films screened at the 2018 Adelaide Film Festival – MELODRAMA / RANDOM / MELBOURNE! and The Last Time, respectively.

Repent or Perish! (Matthew Victor Pastor, 2018) premiered at the Mercury Theatre. The film revolves around a young gay man, Amos, his sister Jewel, a drug dealer and their father Julian, a conservative Filipino Christian. Set over the course of 24 hours, their lives will intersect. Repent or Perish, what choice does this family have?

The screening follows the premiere of Adelaide director Allison Chhorn’s hybrid docu-fiction The Plastic House – a diaristic portrait of a young girl mourning the passing of her parents, who takes over the family farm, by herself.

The Plastic House was unspooled to viewers at the Festival recently, supported by two short films by emerging Melbourne practitioner Audrey Lam.

Curator Nicholas Godfrey, Lecturer at Flinders University, said of the works: “It seems significant that Allison Chhorn, Matthew Victor Pastor and Audrey Lam are emerging as three of our most arresting up-and-coming filmmakers. These three Asian-Australians use cinema to explore aspects of migrant identity in distinctive ways: Pastor’s relentless urgency and continual stylistic reinvention; Lam’s impressionistic documentary-fiction hybridity across mixed media; and Chhorn’s precise formal minimalism, which arrives at its own place of interiority. Whereas the poetics of Chhorn and Lam are delivered in hushed tones, the stylistically maximal Pastor prefers to put his points across with an exclamation mark. We would do well to pay attention.”

Tickets and more information can be found here.

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