Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Rolling the Tropfest Dice

On Sunday, Nicole made the trip up to Ballarat so that Michelle and I could take her our for a birthday lunch. Finding Chowder House in Hepburn Springs, we sampled the much reviewed chowder, with it winning the praises of our San Fran Aussie! The Seafood Chowder was my choice, and very filling, and so good.

A hot day saw us wander through Daylesford, before an icecream stop, and drive back to Ballarat. Nicole and I then got the train back to Melbourne.

I joined Katrina, Gina and Maria at Federation Square for this year's Tropfest. A change of venue this year, for reasons undisclosed, meant a different surrounding, much harder seating, and less liquid picnic supplies (being a dry site, boo!). Strange change.

The Telstra Mobile Masterpieces were up first, before things got started on the cross to Sydney. 3 short films shot entirely on mobile phones. Design Crimes was hilarious, and a piss take on the design flaws of people and the community at the moment, targeting particularly those frangipani stickers in people's car windows. This section was won by a very moving film called Missing You. Very sweet, and sad.

With the red carpet and judge introductions going on onscreen, Fed Square had some sound adjustment issues for sometime, as the cobbled ground filled with movie buffs.

Quite a few little films were touching on mental health and suicide, with Happenstance a depiction of an interrupted plan in progress, by a singing bear-o-gram at the door. Cute. Smoking Will Kill You was more mistaken suicidal acts in the form of a smoko break. Every Second Weekend was a tough film about a Men's group discussing their experiences of child access, divorce and loss.

Social commentary come through in these less-than-7 minute films, with How God Works giving us a taste of privilege and sociopathic behaviour, and the eventual winner, Shock, a "tribute" to Kyle Sandilands and the trouble he was in last year for his inappropriate radio calling.

Falling Backwards was very clever, in a violent sequence acted backwards. Animations were also included in the 16 finalists with My Neighbourhood Has Been Overrun By Baboons, One being the use of the signature item, dice, as the characters of the film, and robotic Awakenings.

Another great Tropfest, and celebration of Australian upcoming film makers.

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