The 2016 Melbourne International Film Festival: FilmInk’s Picks

July 25, 2016
With The 2016 Melbourne International Film Festival kicking off this week, FilmInk’s staffers dig through the programme to pick the films that they’re most pumped about.


DOV KORNITS (Publisher)

ELLE “I’m a massive Paul Verhoeven fan, and to see what he can do with one of the most clinical actresses around, Isabelle Huppert, has got me salivating.”

BORN IN FLAMES “I’m a big fan of Lizzie Borden’s 1986 film, Working Girls, which I discovered on VHS, but I haven’t seen the film that she made before that, Born In Flames, which is screening in the ‘Gaining Ground: Take Notice’ section. The saddest thing is that Lizzie Borden didn’t make a decent film after Working Girls.”

JOE CINQUE’S CONSOLATION “I’ve seen Down Under and The Death And Life Of Otto Bloom, so this is the Australian film that I want to see. Director, Sotiris Dounoukas, is a really promising auteur, and handpicked this story to tell as his feature debut. Have you heard about the real life story that it’s based on? Look it up, yikes!”

LOVESONG “Two words – Riley Keough. After binging on The Girlfriend Experience TV show, I am ready to go again with this story of two girlfriends on a road trip, which also stars Jena Malone, and also features Amy Seimetz (who co-directed The Girlfriend Experience) and intriguingly, director, Cary Joji Fukunaga (True Detective: Season 1).”

ON RICHARD’S SIDE “My daughter has an intellectual disability, and just watching the trailer to this Australian documentary made me bawl. Thirty years in the making, it follows a family with an intellectually impaired son, who have advocated and cared for him for many years. With their son now a grown man, they must make choices that will guarantee that he is looked after in the future.”

Jerry Lewis

Jerry Lewis

ERIN FREE (Editor)

JERRY LEWIS: THE TOTAL FILMMAKER “Beloved in France, and, well, hated in lots of other places, Jerry Lewis remains one of the most seminal comedic voices in American cinema, and this collection of his directorial efforts is a wonderful distillation of the mirth master’s sadly underrated behind-the-camera brilliance. If only MIFF had been able to steal The Day The Clown Cried from the impenetrable safe in Jerry’s house…”

ZERO DAYS “After majestically applying the blowtorch to the feet of the world’s weirdest religion with Going Clear: Scientology And The Prison Of Belief, Alex Gibney turns his incisive, filmmaking detective skills to the world of state-backed cyber warfare. We’re scared already…”

GRADUATION “Cristian Mungiu’s 4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days is a masterpiece of minimalist genius, and his latest effort, Graduation – which tracks the fallout from a sexual assault – looks like another cinematic slap in the face. I’m bracing myself happily for the impact.”

UNLOCKING THE CAGE “Chris Hegedus and DA Pennebaker have made some of the greatest docos of all time (Bob Dylan: Don’t Look Back, The War Room, Town Bloody Hall etc), and here they look at the complex issue of animal rights and the legal system. It’s Project Nim meets A Few Good Men!”

CHRISTINE “The under-celebrated Rebecca Hall will surely rock the rafters in this true life drama, playing the tragic and complex Christine Chubbuck, a television journalist who committed suicide live on air in the 1970s.”

The Devil's Candy

The Devil’s Candy


THE DEVIL’S CANDY “Sean Byrne’s long-awaited follow up to The Loved Ones combines heavy metal and horror – two great tastes that taste great together.”

MEAL TICKETS “A bit of home-town favouritism here, but Mat de Koning’s decade-in-the-making look at the rise and fall of Perth band, The Screwtop Detonators, is never less than completely authentic.”

THE NEON DEMON “Nicolas Winding Refn’s latest controversy brings giallo style to the ruthless world of fashion. A film that has offended so many people has to be worth checking out.”

GIMME DANGER “It’s Jim Jarmusch on The Stooges – this is mandatory viewing.”

THE LURE “It’s simply been a long time between Polish vampire mermaid musicals. In a programme packed with oddities, this one might be the weirdest.”

imageMARINA COLETTA (Intern)

EMO THE MUSICAL “This film puts a satirical spin on the ‘Emo’ subculture, and then makes it into a musical. It looks a little off the wall and hilarious.”

TRAIN TO BUSAN “This apparently uses a train and zombies to challenge the class system in South Korea. That just seems like an odd and interesting combination of factors.”

A FLICKERING TRUTH “As a huge lover of film, I can’t imagine living in a world where movies were banned. This film shows what it’s like in Afghanistan for those who won’t burn their films, which seems like an unbelievably horrible scenario.”

GOAT “As a college student, I am well informed in the tradition of hazing and its dangers. Goat seems to bring the issue into the open for the first time, and also has some big name actors.”

KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS “This film is one of very few stop-motion films I’ve heard of lately. The style seems very Tim Burton, whose movies appealed to me growing up, which is why I want to see it.”

Certain Women

Certain Women


CERTAIN WOMEN “A film about the lives of women in a male-dominated landscape appeals to me, the idea of three different perspectives and stories is interesting, and the women involved (Laura Dern, Michelle Williams, Kristen Stewart, and director, Kelly Reichardt) intrigue me enormously.”

EMO THE MUSICAL “This concept just sounds amazing, to be honest. Not only the idea of an emo kid and a Christian girl falling in love, which just sounds hilarious, but it’s a musical? I love it.”

FRANK & LOLA “I love Michael Shannon, and the idea sounds quite interesting. Thrillers are always good fun.”

HIGH-RISE “Though more of a mainstream entry to the film festival, the idea for this film is gripping, the trailer beautiful, and Tom Hiddleston looks like he gives an amazing performance. I really want to know what happens, to be honest.”

LIFE, ANIMATED “I love short films, and this sounds like a brilliant one; an autistic boy who translates his life into cartoons sounds like a beautiful tale (well, if well told), and I want to see how the idea translates into a short film.”

The 2016 Melbourne International Film Festival runs from July 28-August 14. For full programme, ticketing, and venue details, head to MIFF.

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