By day 3 I am definitely getting into the MIFF groove once more – dashing between venues, chatting to people you sit next to or in the queue, seeing the familiar faces from last year. Even managed to grab a banh mi from Pho Nom between the 1.30 and 4.00pm sessions – bonus!
Three very different films again today, starting with “Another Country”, which should be compulsory viewing for all Australians, especially our politicians. Thank you to Molly Reynolds, Rolf de Heer and David Gulpill for making a film that forces us white fellas to look at the disconnect between Government policy and its demands on the indigenous way of life. I wish I could walk away feeling hopeful about the future, but I can’t and I don’t.
I then stepped into the stifling (and hypocritical) patriarchal world of rural Turkey, in the film “Mustang”. Bringing back memories of The Suicide Virgins (5 beautiful young females cloistered together) this film was seductive via the outstanding beauty of the girls, their interactions and playfulness. The girls have been raised by their Grandma and Uncle, but are confined to the house after a neighbour spots them playing with boys on their way home on the last day of school before the summer break. To protect their virginity the girls are locked up, with increasing diligence as they try and find ways to break free from their ‘prison’. Marriages are arranged hastily, despite their youth. The youngest, a mere child, fights against what seems to be their destiny of male dominance.
“A Perfect Day” ended my day perfectly. Despite the fact I was a a ball of tension throughout the film, worrying that something awful was going to happen to our ‘heroes’, I thoroughly enjoyed the film (mind you, I am a Tim Robbins fan, so that certainly helped). The film exposes the ludicrousness that is UN intervention in war zones – the red tape, the infighting – and the suspicions of the locals, plus the real danger within which the UN forces and NGO’s operate. The film is set in the Balkans, towards the end of the conflict, and focuses on two veteran aid workers (Tim Robbins and Benicio del Toro) as they try and remove a corpse from the only functioning well in the area. There is humour amidst the tension and sadness.