Celebrating Gulpilil: New Writing – Where to Begin with David Gulpilil (for BFI website)

As part of efforts to ensure David Gulpilil’s life and work is celebrated in the UK, I have written a short feature article for the British Film Institute’s ‘Where to begin’ series, which aims to introduce audiences to a new star or filmmaker, and gives them tips on where to start, where to go next, and what to avoid.

As the BFI’s own blurb puts it:

One of the great presences in Australian film, David Gulpilil blazed a trail for Aboriginal representation on screen – from breakout hits Walkabout and Crocodile Dundee to more recent films that blasted away the stereotypes.

Where to begin with David Gulpilil might have some contentious choices, so feel free to let me know where you’d suggest people start, either in the comments below or via Twitter.

And, of course, don’t forget to keep an eye out for more celebrations of Gulpilil’s life and work, including a short retrospective (and my illustrated talk) at Chichester International Film Festival later this month.

Satellite Dreaming Revisited: Australian Indigenous Media (Screening + Discussion)

Photograph of Aboriginal media pioneer Freda Glynn, who gazes at the camera, her fingers interlocked.
Aboriginal media pioneer, and subject of She Who Must Be Loved, Freda Glynn

EDIT (11/03): A recording of the discussion is now available on the Satellite Dreaming Revisited website.

In the coming weeks, I’m honoured to be helping to launch a new online resource dedicated to Australian Indigenous Media, Satellite Dreaming Revisited, in my role as Screening Coordinator at the Menzies Australia Institute at King’s College London.

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David Stratton’s Stories of Australian Cinema – A Watch List



Every Sunday evening, for the last few weeks, I’ve been live-tweeting along to David Stratton’s Stories of Australian Cinema (you can revisit the threads here: episode 1 / episode 2 / episode 3).

While the theatrical cut played at the BFI London Film Festival back in 2016 (and again at a London Australian Film event in 2017), only now has the full, three-part documentary series – produced by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation – finally got an airing on BBC Four in the UK. If you missed it, you can catch up via BBC iPlayer where it will remain for the next twelve months.

In the series, David Stratton – Australia’s leading British-born film critic and long-standing fixture of the Sydney Film Festival (for which he served as director from 1966-1983) – presents a fascinating and jolly (if, understandably patchy) jaunt through Australian cinema, with episodes themed around ‘Game Changers’, ‘Outsiders’, and ‘Family’.

In conversations about the series on social media, quite a few people have lamented the fact that – unlike other shows of this ilk – the BBC have elected not to show a relevant film after each episode. Others have noted that Stratton’s documentary has given them a whole new bunch of films to add to their watch-lists, especially since the UK remains on lockdown due to Covid-19.

So, without further ado, and to help you on your way to (re)discovering some of the delights that Australian cinema has to offer, here is my brief round-up of how British audiences might go about tracking down some of the films featured in the series.

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Interview with Al Araby Television

Screen Shot 2019-08-19 at 12.45.55

During the London Australian Film Festival at the end of June, I gave an interview for Tales of Cinema, a series of half-hour programmes on different aspects of the cinema, produced for London-based Al Araby Television. The episode in which I featured was broadcast to audiences across North Africa and the Middle East on August 6, and is now available to stream.

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