The Sydney Film Festival has been and gone, and I managed to catch four films this year. Not bad, I suppose, what with everything. Our policy is always to see movies that are unlikely to get distributed in Australia, which generally means taking a punt on random stuff and hoping it's OK.
Here's what I saw:
Fujian Blue: Thematically interesting but clumsily plotted film set in the people-smuggling capital of China.
Under The Bombs: Road movie about a woman seeking her son in the aftermath of Israel's 2006 invasion of southern Lebanon. It was filmed there and then, giving a real sense of urgency and directness to proceedings, but also resulting in some narrative blips.
Boy A: Excellent British film about a notorious 10-year-old murderer, now all grown up and trying to start a new life under a pseudonym. Depressing but cleverly written and featuring an exceptional central performance from Andrew Garfield.
Jar City: An Icelandic cop mystery featuring festering corpses and brutal violence, but the strongest audience reaction came from the scene in which the cop eats a sheep's head for dinner.
I didn't get to see anything at the State Theatre, which is really the heart of the festival, but the films were all worth seeing. Boy A might even get distributed with a bit of luck.