Set in the early twentieth century, High Ground 2020 explores a complex reckoning with the past for both family and country, against a backdrop of stunning Australian landscapes, and stars Simon Baker, BIFF 2020 patron Jack Thompson, and compelling newcomer Jacob Junior Nayinggul.
Presented by the Australian Cinémathèque at GOMA and city-wide partners until 11 October, BIFF 2020 is exclusively in cinemas with a full range of COVID-safe precautions in place at all venues.
Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA) Director Chris Saines said BIFF 2020’s line-up of over 70 films including new release features and documentaries, special events, a short flim competition, and the contributions of critically acclaimed patrons Jack Thompson and Jill Bilcock would create a dynamic and memorable Festival.
‘We are delighted to celebrate diverse local and international storytelling with this opportunity for film-lovers to return to cinemas,’ Mr Saines said.
Amanda Slack-Smith, the Festival’s Artistic Director and Curatorial Manager, Australian Cinémathèque, QAGOMA, and her team have curated BIFF 2020 film strands around themes including transcendence, release, belonging and homecoming.
‘Unmissable films include the moving tale of heartbreak Blackbird 2019 starring Susan Sarandon, Kate Winslet, Mia Wasikowska and Sam Neill, and Human Capital 2019 with Liev Schreiber, Marisa Tomei and Peter Sarsgaard, a thoughtful and absorbing look at class divide and the American dream,’ Ms Slack-Smith said.
‘For those seeking to be enchanted, Felicità 2020 is a French comedy in the vein of Little Miss Sunshine, The Woman Who Ran2020 is a tale of female camaraderie from prolific Korean auteur Hong San-soo, and About Endlessness 2019, shows life’s melancholic beauty through a dreamy lens by Swedish writer-director Roy Andersson.’
The Festival’s selection of documentaries underscores the power of true stories from the streets of Ramallah to the exuberant drag scene of 1950s New York, and brings together captivating people, places, and perspectives.
‘We are gratified to have documentaries that explore different ways of being, such as Faith 2020, a visually striking voyage into the inner workings of a Catholic martial arts monastery in rural Italy, and The Reason I Jump2020, a detailed and intimate portrait of nonspeaking autistic people,’ Ms Slack-Smith said.
‘Avid fans of mystery and intrigue will be enthralled by the Australian premieres of documentaries Miracle Fishing 2020 and Vivos 2020.
‘The concept of disappearance is explored in both Miracle Fishing, a gripping and surprisingly heart-warming tale of the nerve-wracking reality of having a loved one kidnapped, and Vivos, a story of Mexican government corruption through the families of 43 forcibly disappeared students, directed by leading international artist Ai Weiwei, whose remarkable work Boomerang 2006 is currently installed in the Queensland Art Gallery.’
The compelling and vivid documentary Firestarter: The Story of Bangarra 2020 by Wayne Blair and Nel Minchin, a world premiere, will close BIFF 2020 with simultaneous screenings at all six Festival venues. A celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander lived experience and storytelling, the documentary looks back at the last 30 years of Bangarra Dance Theatre and the role of its dynamic artistic director Stephen Page.
BIFF 2020 will be presented at QAGOMA’s Australian Cinémathèque, the only facility of its kind in an Australian art museum, and at valued partner venues Dendy Cinemas Coorparoo, The Elizabeth Picture Theatre, New Farm Six Cinemas, Reading Cinemas Newmarket and the State Library of Queensland.
Stay up to date by subscribing to the BIFF enews at: www.biff.com.au follow BIFF 2020 on social media @bneintlfilmfest and via the hashtag #BIFFest2020.
BIFF 2020 is supported by the Queensland Government through Screen Queensland and the Australian Federal Government through Screen Australia.