Sydney Travelling Film Festival lands June 23

Striking: A shot of writer James Baldwin in I Am Not Your Negro.

Striking: A shot of writer James Baldwin in I Am Not Your Negro.

It is that time of year again when Newcastle movie connoisseurs benefit from the Sydney Film Festival, with its popular mobile offshoot coming to Newcastle.

Running June 23-25, the Travelling Film Festival screens an array of unique films. Opening night, Friday, June 23, sets the feel-good scene with special presentation comedy-drama Ali's Wedding, including complimentary after-film drinks. Sunday night culminates with the thought-provoking story, We Don’t Need a Map, that began this year's Sydney Film Festival to rapturous applause.

My Life as a Zucchini  is the solitary child-friendly selection. 

The line-up:

Ali’s Wedding, 7pm, Friday, June 23. 100 mins.  English/Arabic/Farsi, English subtitles. Truth is stranger than fiction within this Australian feel-good story that won a recent AWGIE award for best screenplay. Based on the true incidents an arranged marriage that lasted less than two hours. Hilarious, honest, authentic look at multicultural family values.

My Life As A Zucchini , 1.30pm, Saturday, June 24, 88 mins (PG). English language. Nominated for Oscar and Golden Globe awards, delightful family friendly stop-motion animation tale follows an orphan boy becoming friends with a band of misfits. Screens with short film The Wall (suitable for children from 10 years). 

Pop Aye, 3.30pm, Saturday. 102 mins. Thai language, English subtitles. Road trip of a different kind when a downtrodden architect and his beautiful beloved elephant take a trip across Thailand to find their long lost childhood home collectively meeting some interesting individuals on the journey.

Ingrid Goes West, 6.30pm, Saturday. 98 mins. English language. Biting, dark satire about impact on social media by awkward and unconventional ways. Young starlets Aubrey Plaza and Elizabeth Olson play characters you either loathe or love.

Wind River, 8.30pm, Saturday. 110 mins. English language. Direct from the Cannes Film Festival, this crafty, intelligent, Native American-infused crime mystery offers razor-edge suspense starring Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olson.

The Teacher, 12pm, Sunday, June 25. 102 mins. Slovak language with English subtitles. Dark comedy set in Communist era Czechoslovakia regarding a politically in-tune school teacher with unscrupulous values.

I Am Not Your Negro, 2pm, Sunday.  93 mins. English language. Narrated by Samuel L Jackson, this Oscar-nominated doco offers an unforgettable take on matters concerning history to modern day. Thought-provoking, profound and eloquent.

Holy Air, 5pm, Sunday. 81 mins. Arabic, French, Hebrew, Italian languages,  English subtitles. Clever comedy of a Nazareth businessman under extreme circumstances having to negotiate with holy city rulers, gangsters and his own family, convincing all to back him in the scheme of selling “holy air”. The exact fun farce it sounds.

We Don’t Need A Map, 7pm, Sunday. 85 mins. English and traditional indigenous languages, English subtitles. Director Warwick Thornton, who made Sampson & Delilah, takes viewers on a journey through  Australian colonial, astronomical indigenous history to present. The spiritual connection of the filmmaker enlightens in both pleasure and provocative means. Screens with short film Finding Mawiranga.

Book tickets  online at sff.org/newcastle or call Tower Cinemas box office 4926 2233. 

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