The Dungog Festival has announced its inaugural feature film program, including Australian comedy THE INFINITE MAN which will open the festival on Friday August 29 at a “green carpet” reception.
The debut feature from Hugh Sullivan, THE INFINITE MAN is set in mind-bending motion when Dale (Josh McConville), a highly-strung scientist, invents time travel to try and re-do an anniversary weekend with his girlfriend Lana (Hannah Marshall) that was hijacked by her ex, Terry (Alex Dimitriades).
THE INFINITE MAN premiered at US festival SXSW earlier this year to critical acclaim with Screen Daily calling the film “smart, funny and oddly romantic… beautifully written and engagingly complicated” and was nominated for several awards by Indiewire who touted the film as “an exemplary time travel comedy.”
The three-day film program provides a cross-section of Australian and International works, shorts, features and documentaries, and a mix of genres to satisfy any cinema enthusiast.
The film program predominantly screens in the historic James Theatre, the oldest surviving purpose built cinema on the Australian mainland. Dungog is situated in the upper Hunter Valley, surrounded by rolling hills and the Barrington Tops mountain range.
Member for Upper Hunter George Souris congratulated organisers on the fantastic program of events for the Dungog Festival and encouraged everyone to secure tickets well in advance of 29 August.
“The NSW Government through our tourism and major events agency Destination NSW is proud to support the Dungog Festival,” Mr Souris said.
“The three day program of Australian and international films, cultural events, food and wine will be a huge drawcard for visitors to the Festival, which is expected to attract close to 3,000 visitors and bring an estimated $1 million in visitor expenditure to the local economy this year.”
“From the fine fabulous wine and gourmet food to the beautiful accommodation a getaway in the Hunter Valley offers a taste of the good life. Add to that the Dungog Festival’s entertaining line up and you have a weekend away that is not to be missed,” he said.
For the kids there’s Australian produced animation MAYA THE BEE MOVIE with an all star cast voicing the characters of the popular children’s book series including Richard Roxburgh, Jacki Weaver and Noah Taylor; along with Amélie director Jeanne Pierre Jeunet’s THE YOUNG AND PRODIGIOUS T.S. SPIVET, delivered with a creative inventiveness to delight the whole family.
The drama selection remains close to home with Australian production FELL by Kasimir Burgess, starring Matt Nable and Daniel Henshall. The film is a taut and thrilling meditation on revenge and redemption. FANTAIL is a warm and moving debut from New Zealand, written by its lead Sophie Henderson, focusing on a strained brother-sister relationship as they do their best to look after each other and track down their father.
For genre movie fans the late night selection includes the hilarious vampire comedy from the minds behind Flight of the Concords and Eagle vs Shark. WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS is a mockumentary following a share-house of suburban vampires. Premiering at the festival’s other late night slot is the unapologetically brutal JOHN DOE: VIGILANTE in which a mystery man bent on justice-killings gains a cult and copycat following.
The Dungog Festival also incorporates an impressive line-up of Australian music acts including Tim Rogers, The Paper Kites, Husky and Meg Mac, hence the film program also draws upon themes of music and art with Mike Myers’ documentary on legendary music producer Shep Gordon SUPERMENSCH, the Nick Cave docu-feature 20,000 DAYS ON EARTH and a portrait of Australian artist John Olsen with the documentary KING SUN.
A selection of more than 30 short films will be announced next week. All Australian shorts in the program will be competing for “The Gog” award worth $1,000 and donated by the local community.
Film-goers are encouraged to explore the festival’s camping and glamping options or snap up local hotel, motel and B&B accommodation while it still lasts. Festival films and events, as well as travel and accommodation information can be found at dungogfestival.com.au
THE INFINITE MAN
Australia. DIRECTOR: Hugh Sullivan.
CAST: Josh McConville, Hannah Marshall, Alex Dimitriades
MAYA THE BEE MOVIE
Australia / Germany. DIRECTORS: Alexs Stadermann & Simon Pickard.
CAST: Richard Roxburgh, Noah Taylor, Jacki Weaver, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Coco Jack Gillies.
NEW ZEALAND. DIRECTOR: Curtis Vowell.
CAST: Sophie Henderson, Stephen Lovatt, Jarod Rawiri
AUSTRALIA. DIRECTOR: Kasimir Burgess.
CAST: Matt Nable, Daniel Henshall
20,000 DAYS ON EARTH
United Kingdom. DIRECTORS: IAN FORSYTH, JANE POLLARD
FEATURING: Nick Cave, Warren Ellis, Ray Winstone, Kylie Minogue
THE YOUNG AND PRODIGIOUS T.S. SPIVET
FRANCE & CANADA. DIRECTOR: Jean-Pierre Jeunet.
CAST Kyle Catlett, Helena Bonham Carter, Judy Davis.
TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT
BELGIUM & FRANCE. DIRECTORS: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne.
CAST: Marion Cotillard, Olivier Gourmet
LATE NIGHT SCREENINGS
WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
NEW ZEALAND & USA. DIRECTORS: Jemaine Clement & Taika Waititi.
CAST: Jemaine Clement, Taika Waititi, Jonathan Brugh, Cori Gonzalez-Macuer
JOHN DOE: VIGILANTE
AUSTRALIA. DIRECTOR: Kelly Dolen.
CAST: Jamie Bamber, Daniel Lissing, Lachy Hulme
THE KING SUN: JOHN OLSEN, A PORTRAIT AT 85
AUSTRALIA. DIRECTOR: Tony Williams.
FEATURING: John Olsen, Barry Humphries, Carlos Barrios
CANADA. DIRECTORS: Jennifer Baichwal, Edward Burtynsky
CANANDA. DIRECTOR: Jody Shapiro.
FEATURING: Burt Shavitz.