ANTENNA DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES FULL 2018 LINE-UP

September 6, 2018

Antenna, Australia’s international documentary film festival, today unveils its full program for 2018. Featuring 48 thought-provoking documentaries from 23 countries, the festival screens across Sydney from 9-14 October 2018.

antenna

ANTENNA DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES FULL 2018 LINE-UP

Antenna, Australia’s international documentary film festival, today unveils its full program for 2018. Featuring 48 thought-provoking documentaries from 23 countries, the festival screens across Sydney from 9-14 October 2018.

The 2018 program provides Sydneysiders the opportunity to connect with the wider world, through stories that range from the humourous to the shocking, the real to the surreal, the previously unknown and unseen to the commonalities of human experience. The Festival program is also made up of three film competitions, Q&A’s and masterclasses by local and international guests, retrospective program and other special events.

“We have watched an incredible amount of films from around the world and have selected an exceptionally strong line-up that represents the diversity of creative nonfiction cinema today,” said Antenna’s Festival Director, David Rokach. “Whether the themes are love, or our relationship to animals, the environment and fellow humans, or political exposés, we’ve selected films that explore these ideas in new, engaging and interesting ways.”

Opening the festival is the Australian Premiere of Putin’s Witnesses, the latest film from acclaimed and provocative Russian director now exiled to Latvia, Vitaly Mansky. The film chronicles the Russian president’s controversial rise to power in remarkable detail, to both damning and gripping effect. Antenna will host Vitaly Mansky for the first time in Australia and screen a curated retrospective of his work. Closing the festival will be the joyous, crowd-pleasing The Gospel of Eureka.

Celebrated New York conceptual artist and now filmmaker Jill Magid will attend the festival to present the Australian Premiere of her remarkable work The Proposal. Part thriller, part romantic love-triangle, and a highly original cinematic exploration of the concept of artistic legacy framed around celebrated Mexican architect, Luis Barragán. Other international guests include Stefano Savona, director of the Cannes winner Samouni Road, and Giovanni Totaro, director of the beautiful, heart- warming Happy Winter.

Other International Highlights

Direct from its World Premiere in Venice, renowned filmmaker Victor Kossakovsky’s Aquarela takes audiences on a deeply cinematic journey through the transformative beauty and raw power of water, capturing its many personalities in startling visual detail.

Antenna’s exceptional line-up of international films also include the poignant For The Birds, following one woman and her 200 pet birds through a crumbling marriage and a legal battle with local animal rescuers. The depths of human darkness, depravity and fragility are explored in Caniba, a probing and unsettling portrait of Japanese cannibal, Issei Sagawa, following his partial paralysis.

Alongside these films are the recent award-winning My Father Is My Mother’s Brother (Ukraine), the funny and philosophical Infinite Football (Romania), the nail-biting A Woman Captured (Hungary/Germany) and the sexy and hypnotic Obscuro Barroco – a stunning view of Brazil’s Carnival seen through the eyes of iconic transgender activist Luana Muniz.

Australian Highlights

Australian documentaries feature prominently at the festival, with an Australian Competition of feature documentaries as well as an Australian Shorts competition. Stand out feature documentaries include Tribeca Winner, Island of the Hungry Ghosts, about Christmas Island’s notorious immigration detention centre, and the world premiere of The Eviction, an investigation of Australia’s most controversial public housing sell-off, the Sirius building, told through the eyes of those on the front-line.

Also from Australia, Happy Sad Man, a disarmingly honest documentary that draws back the curtain on the complex inner worlds of men and challenges the way we think about masculinity today, and The Scribe, on master speechwriter Graham Freudenberg and his essential role in the formation of policies that redefined our social landscape.

Antenna will also hold special programs and events such as ArtDocs, a collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Arts presenting documentaries by and about artists, a special screening of the beautiful, timely restoration of Les Blank’s classic Chulas Fronteras (meaning ‘Beautiful Borders’), about the music of the Mexican community on both sides of the Texas-Mexico border, and the annual DocTalk, Antenna’s full day industry event featuring discussions and master-classes about the art, craft and business of documentary filmmaking.

The 8th edition of the Antenna Documentary Film Festival opens Tuesday 9 October in Sydney and runs until Sunday 14 October. For complete program information and to purchase tickets and passes, go to www.antennafestival.org

Antenna acknowledges the ongoing support of the City of Sydney, the NSW Government and Screen Australia.

FEATURE FILMS

AMERICA
Chase Whiteside & Erick Stoll | USA | 2018 | 76 mins | Australian Premiere
América is the uplifting, soulful story of three brothers confronting the chasm between adolescent yearning and adult responsibilities when brought together to care for their charismatic ninety-three-year-old grandmother.

AQUARELA
Victor Kossakovsky | Germany, UK, Denmark, US | 2018 | Australian Premiere
Direct from its World Premiere in Venice, renowned filmmaker Victor Kossakovsky’s Aquarela takes audiences on a deeply cinematic journey through the transformative beauty and raw power of water, capturing its many personalities in startling visual detail.

A WOMAN CAPTURED
Bernadett Tuza-Ritter | Hungary, Germany | 2017 | 89 mins | Sydney Premiere
This audience favourite at Sundance tells the incredible story of a woman who has been living as a house slave for 10 years. Meeting the filmmaker gives her hope for a new life.

BLOWIN UP
Stephanie Wang-Breal | USA | 2018 | 94 mins | Australian Premiere
Instead of criminalising sex workers an experimental court in Queens helps them to leave the profession. The film provides extraordinary access to the court, exploring the misunderstood topic of sex work from a non-judgmental feminist perspective.

BRUCE LEE & THE OUTLAW
Joost Vandebrug | Czech Republic, Netherlands, UK | 2018 | 85 mins | Australian Premiere
Like a modern day Oliver Twist, in the tunnels beneath Bucharest, a homeless boy is adopted by Bruce Lee, the infamous “King of the Underworld”. With maturity comes new relationships and tough decisions.

CANIBA
Véréna Paravel & Lucien Castaing-Taylor | France | 2017 | 90 mins | Sydney Premiere
A harrowing engagement with Issei Sagawa, a man who once murdered a student and ate part of her. This disturbing film uses cannibalism to raise questions about madness, repulsion and desire within the human condition.

CHULAS FRONTERAS
Les Blank | 58 Mins | USA | 1976
Sydney PremiereA beautiful, timely restoration of Chulas Fronteras (meaning ‘Beautiful Borders’), folklorist/cine-poet Les Blank’s classic ode to Norteña music and the migrant culture that exists along the Texas–Mexican border.

THE EVICTION (ON THE ROCKS)
Blue Lucine | Australia | 2018 | 60 mins | World Premiere
Miller’s Point residents Bob and Barney have been best friends since birth. But when the NSW Government decides to sell Sirius, the iconic housing commision apartment block, their tight-knit universe is turned upside down.

FOR THE BIRDS
Richard Miron | USA | 2018 | 90 mins | Australian Premiere
A woman’s love for her pet chickens, ducks, geese, and turkeys—all 200 of them—ignites a battle with local animal rescuers and puts her marriage in jeopardy.

GAGARIN’S PIONEERS
Vitaly Mansky | 19 Mins | Russia | 2005  What is more important – life or home? Director Vitaly Mansky questions his former schoolmates who were members of the Young Pioneers and who swore allegiance to their then homeland, the Soviet Union.

HAPPY SAD MAN
Genevieve Bailey | Australia | 2018 | 92 mins | Sydney Premiere
A disarmingly honest documentary that draws back the curtain on the complex inner worlds of men from across Australian life and challenges the way we think about masculinity today.

HAPPY WINTER
Giovanni Totaro | Italy | 2017 | 91 mins | Australian Premiere
Director and festival guest Giovanni Totaro follows the lives of the cabin-dwelling holiday community on Sicily’s Mondello Beach. A funny and heartwarming film that examines the economic crisis in Italy through the microcosm of a beach.

INFINITE FOOTBALL
Corneliu Porumboiu | Romania | 2018 | 70 mins | Sydney Premiere
Laurentiu Ginghin thinks the game of football isn’t so beautiful. His dead-end government job has led him to create “Football 2.0”, a utopian vision of the game. The film is a masterful balance of comedy and tragedy.

ISLAND OF HUNGRY GHOSTS
Gabrielle Brady | Germany, UK, Australia | 2018 | 94 mins | Sydney Premiere
Christmas Island’s notorious immigration detention centre is the focal point of this beautiful documentary, innovatively framed around the island’s freely migrating red crabs.

LA FLOR DE LA VIDA
Claudia Abend & Adriana Loeff | Uruguay | 2017 | 84 mins | Australian Premiere
After five decades of marriage, Aldo and Gabriella are facing a crisis. Their story, told with humour, distance and scepticism, makes us face the inevitable question: is love everlasting?

MILFORD GRAVES FULL MANTIS
Jake Meginsky, Neil Young | USA | 2018 | 91 mins | Australian Premiere
A captivating portrait of renowned jazz drummer Milford Graves, exploring his kaleidoscopic creativity and relentless curiosity as an improviser, global-gatherer, philosopher and avant-garde pioneer.

MINDING THE GAP
Bing Liu | USA | 2018 | 98 mins | Australian Premiere
This Sundance winner follows three young men bonding to escape volatile families in their Rust Belt hometown. As they face adult responsibilities, unexpected revelations threaten their decade-long friendship.

MY FATHER IS MY MOTHER’S BROTHER
Vadym Ilkov | Ukraine | 2018 | 76 mins | Australian Premiere
A bohemian artist becomes a father to his five-year-old niece when his sister’s mental health deteriorates and he finds himself awkwardly balancing fairy tales and playtime with his rowdy nightlife and provocative art.

OBSCURO BARROCO
Evangelia Kranioti | France, Greece | 2018 | 60 mins | Australian Premiere
In this sexy and hypnotic film, a Brazilian transgender icon guides us to the heart of Rio’s festive nights, where the body, can reinvent itself through the metamorphic excesses of carnival.

OUR NEW PRESIDENT
Maxim Pozdorovkin | Russia, USA | 2018 | 77 mins | Sydney Premiere
If you thought Trump’s election was an insane spectacle, wait until you see what the Russians saw. A horrifying and hilarious satirical portrait of the US election told entirely through Russian propaganda.

PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF DESIRE
Hao Wu | China, USA | 2018 | 94 mins | Sydney Premiere
Winner of SXSW’s Grand Jury Prize, People’s Republic of Desire takes audiences to a China in the grips of a digital revolution where live-streamers seek fame and fortune via virtual relationships.

PUTIN’S WITNESSES
Vitaly Mansky | Latvia, Switzerland, Czech Republic | 2018 | 102 mins | Australian Premiere
With extraordinary access to Vladimir Putin, director and festival guest Vitaly Mansky chronicles the Russian president’s controversial rise to power in remarkable detail, to both damning and gripping effect.

SAMOUNI ROAD
Stefano Savona | France, Italy | 2018 | 129 mins | Australian Premiere
Using live action, scratchboard animation and drone footage recreations, Stefano Savona makes a three-dimensional portrait of a Palestinian family for whom tragedy is but one facet of their existence.

THE END Of FEAR
Barbara Visser | Netherlands | 2018 | 70 mins | Australian Premiere
Filmmaker Barbara Visser revisits one of the worst crimes in contemporary art history: the murder of artwork ‘Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow and Blue’ and the equally sensational calamities that followed.

THE EYES OF ORSON WELLES
Mark Cousins | UK | 2018 | 110 mins | Sydney Premiere
Filmmaker Mark Cousins dives deep into the visual world of the legendary Orson Welles to reveal a portrait of the artist as he’s never been seen before – through his own paintings and sketches.

THE GOSPEL OF EUREKA
Donal Mosher & Michael Palmieri | USA | 2018 | 75 mins | Australian Premiere
The small town of Eureka is known for its evangelical passion play and gospel drag shows, attracting Christian and queer audiences alike. An enlightening, humorous and optimistic portrait of divergent yet happily coexisting cultures.

THE PRICE OF EVERYTHING
Nathaniel Kahn | USA | 2018 | 98 mins | Sydney Premiere
Deep dive into the rarefied world of contemporary art where everything can be bought and sold. The Price of Everything in this stunning exposé of the role of art in today’s consumerist society

THE PROPOSAL
Jill Magid | USA | 2018 | 83 mins | Australian Premiere
Upon discovering that the work of Mexico’s most famous architect is aggressively “protected” by its Swiss copyright holders, an American conceptual artist develops an unorthodox project to explore artistic legacy.

THE RAFT
Marcus Lindeen | Sweden, Denmark, USA, Germany | 2018 | 97 mins | Sydney Premiere
Well before Big Brother, in 1973, five men and six women sailed without privacy across the Atlantic on a raft. The story of the strangest social experiment of all time – told by those who took part in it.

THE SCRIBE
Ruth Cullen | Australia | 2018 | 70 mins | Sydney Premiere
From deep within the engine room of Australian politics, a beautifully crafted film on master speechwriter Graham Freudenberg and his essential role in the formation of policies that redefined our social landscape.

THE SILENCE OF OTHERS
Robert Bahar, Almudena Carracedo | Spain | 2018 | 95 mins | Australian Premiere
When Spain prohibits the prosecution of any Franco-era crime, surviving torture victims and their families rebel, launching the controversial “Argentine Lawsuit.” Stunning testimonies battle historical amnesia in this gripping exposé.

THE WHITE WORLD ACCORDING TO DALIBOREK
Vít Klusák | Czech Republic, Slovak Republic / UK | 2017 | 105 mins | Australian Premiere
A stylised portrait of a Czech neo-Nazi who hates his life but doesn’t know how to change it. Absurdly funny and ultimately chilling, this tragicomedy investigates the radical worldview of “decent, ordinary people.”

TWO WOLVES
Daniel White, William Hadinata | Australia | 2018 | 89 mins | World Premiere
Each Christmas morning Director Daniel White and his brother open their presents then head to the backyard to beat the shit out of each other. Two Wolves tells the tale of a seasonal dogfight and a family bond.a

UNDER THE SUN
Vitaly Mansky | 110 Mins | Russia | 2015
Shot over a year under strict government control, Under The Sun reveals the conflicted life of a young girl chosen to join North Korea’s Children’s Union.

UNDERMINED: TALES OF THE KIMBERLEY
Nicholas Wrathall | Australia | 2018 | 92 mins | Sydney Premiere
Award-winning director Nicholas Wrathall investigates the true costs of development in the world-famous Kimberley, where mega-mining and pastoral developments threaten not just the pristine environment but more than 200 Indigenous communities.

UNITED SKATES
Dyana Winkler & Tina Brown | USA | 2018 | 88 mins | Sydney Premiere
In this Tribeca Film Festival Audience Award-winning documentary, African-American communities across the US battle in a racially charged environment to save a vital roller-skating subculture.

WHAT IS DEMOCRACY?
Astra Taylor | Canada | 2018 | 107 mins | Australian Premiere
Featuring a wide range of big thinkers including Cornel West & Angela Davis, What Is Democracy? comes at a moment of political crisis to reflect on a word we too often take for granted.

YOURS IN SISTERHOOD
Irene Lusztig | USA | 2018 | 101 mins | Sydney Premiere
Part time-capsule, part call-to-action, American women read and react to 40 year-old letters to Ms. Magazine’s editor. A fascinating exploration of second-wave feminism in the #MeToo age.