Travelling Films offer plenty for Arts-lovers

'Blinded by the Light' is among 10 feature films programmed for the Travelling Film Festival Townsville. STILL: Supplied.

The Travelling Film Festival will make a stop in Townsville this weekend, pulling into Warrina Cineplex for five days for a program packed with a selection of exciting, intriguing and enlightening films from across the globe.

Among the 10 feature films being screened in Townsville, are a number that are sure to appeal to the local Arts community. We’ve rounded up five that may pique your interest:

Travelling films for Music lovers

Blinded by the Light
Directed by Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham).

Set in 1987, British -Pakistani teenager Javed (Viveik Kalra) wants nothing more than to escape the dreary town, its racism and lack of opportunity. Though Javed is drawn to music and writing, his domineering father expects him to pursue a sensible career to bring money into the struggling household. When Javed comes across the music of Springsteen, he finds that the working-class poet speaks directly to his situation and his life and inspires him to push forward and pursue his dreams. Based on The Guardian journalist Sarfraz Manzoor’s memoir, Greetings from Bury Park – and made with Springsteen’s blessing and full access to his catalogue (richly represented here with a number of iconic hits) – Blinded by the Light is an uplifting testament to the power of art to change lives.

Travelling films for Dance lovers

Directed by Icíar Bollaín

A visual treat for ballet fans, this inspiring true story follows UK Royal Ballet’s first black dancer, Carlos Acosta, combining a loving account of his upbringing in his native Havana with glorious dance sequences that flesh out his life story. The film follows Acosta’s impoverished childhood, his early struggles with his monumental talent and his stormy relationship with his father, who was as abusive as he was proud of his son’s career. Although world-famous, Acosta never forgot his roots – as demonstrated by the film’s unflinching commentary on racism, classism and politics.

Travelling films for Visual Arts lovers

Never Look Away
Directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
(The Lives of Others)

Never Look Away takes a vast view of German history, over three eras, in this remarkable love story inspired by the life of revered artist Gerhard Richter. The film follows Kurt from his childhood in Nazi Germany, to his life as a young artist trained to capture the bravery of the working class of East Germany, to someone struggling to find his particular artistic vision when he enjoys freedom of expression in West Germany. At the story’s centre is a beautiful and tragic love story that, as it plays out amidst history, ultimately leads Kurt to discover his own true path as an artist.

Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Directed by Céline Sciamma

Marianne is commissioned to paint the wedding portrait of Héloïse, a young lady who has just left the convent., without Héloïse knowing. Intimacy and attraction grow between the two women as they share Héloïse’s first and last moments of freedom before marriage. Both Héloïse and Marianne find themselves struggling to defy social conventions and see in each other a means of escape. With vulnerable and nuanced performances by its superb leads, this is an intimate and deeply moving period drama about freedom and desire.

A Travelling Film for Photography lovers

Hearts and Bones
Directed by Ben Lawrence

War photographer Daniel Fisher (Hugo Weaving) returns home to Sydney, and despite his partner’s protests, prepares for yet another hazardous overseas assignment. At the same time, he is organising an upcoming exhibition of his work from the world’s war zones. South Sudanese refugee, Sebastian (Andrew Luri), living happily in Australia with his wife and young child, learns that the exhibition will include images of a massacre in his village 15 years earlier. He finds Daniel and begs him to exclude those photographs. An unlikely friendship develops between the two men, but it is severely tested when Daniel makes a shocking discovery. With powerful performances from Weaving and Luri portraying men from very different backgrounds who bond over their shared trauma, director Ben Lawrence’s beautifully acted debut feature is an intelligent, morally complex and deeply moving film.

The Travelling Film Festival will be at Warrina Cineplex, Townsville on 22-26 November 2019.

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