In Character

28 May 2016 – 28 Aug 2016 | GOMA | Cinema A

'In Character' is a cinema project developed in response to the exhibition Cindy Sherman (GOMA, 28 May – 3 October 2016). It brings together a cast of actresses and characters who challenge our expectations for the behaviour, desire and physicality of women onscreen. The program is divided into four intersecting programs, each populated by ideas and personas inspired by Sherman's photography: Hollywood Babylon, The Lady of the House, Dangerous Relations, and Women in Revolt.

Like Sherman's portraits, the characters in these films are exaggerated expressions of identity. Some confront us with complex characterisations of gender and sexuality, others are camp expressions of female archetypes. Uniting these films is the transcendence of their leading performances, given bysome of cinema's most fearless actresses. These singular performances enable the characters to move beyond the conventions of genre cinema to become unforgettable portrayals of women in art and daily life.

The project is accompanied by a series of free programs and events: In Character: Video Montages and In Character: Absolutely Fabulous.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, the previously advertised 'In Character: Variety Hour' series has been cancelled.

For newcomers to the Cinémathèque here's a map and information to help you find your way.

QAGOMA thanks the filmmakers and distributors who have assisted the presentation of this program. Special thanks to Elliott Breeden, American Genre Film Archive, British Film Institute, Cinematek, Institut français, National Film and Sound Archive Australia, Park Circus and UCLA Film and Television Archive. Program curated by José Da Silva, Australian Cinémathèque.

HOLLYWOOD BABYLON revels in stories of fame and infamy. It features images of struggling actresses and fading stars; overbearing celebrity mums and female rivalry on and off stage; obsessions with age, glamour and masquerade; and the allure of notoriety.

Joseph L Mankiewicz All About Eve 1950
Billy Wilder Sunset Boulevard 1950
Mark Robson Valley of the Dolls 1967
Russ Meyer Beyond the Valley of the Dolls 1970
Jerry Schatzberg Puzzle of a Downfall Child 1970
John Waters Pink Flamingos 1972
John Cassavetes Opening Night 1977
Frank Perry Mommie Dearest 1981
Blake Edwards Victor/Victoria 1982
Jennie Livingston Paris is Burning 1991
Robert Zemeckis Death Becomes Her 1992
Abel Ferrara Dangerous Game 1993
John Waters Serial Mom 1994
PaulVerhoeven Showgirls 1995
David Lynch Mulholland Drive 2001
David Lynch Inland Empire 2006
Marjorie Sturm The Cult of JT LeRoy 2014

THE LADY OF THE HOUSE features narratives set within the domestic sphere. It includes films about the eccentric lives lived in cloistered mansions and apartments; the power dynamics between maids and their employers; and experiences of psychological and physical captivity.

George Cukor The Women 1939
George Cukor The Philadelphia Story 1940
Nicholas Ray Johnny Guitar 1954
Georges Franju Les yeux sans visage (Eyes without a Face) 1960
Blake Edwards Breakfast at Tiffany's 1961
Robert Aldrich What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? 1962
Roman Polanski Repulsion 1965
Joseph Losey Boom! 1968
Rainer Werner Fassbinder Die bitteren Tränen der Petra von Kant (The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant) 1972
Jacques Rivette Céline et Julie vont en bateau: Phantom Ladies Over Paris (Celine and Julie Go Boating) 1974
Chantal Akerman Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles 1975
Albert Maysles, David Maysles Grey Gardens 1975
Christopher Miles The Maids 1975
Rob Reiner Misery 1990
Todd Haynes Safe 1995
Jennifer Kent The Babadook 2014
Peter Strickland The Duke of Burgundy 2014

DANGEROUS RELATIONS considers the depiction of difficult and unconventional relationships between parents and their children and wives and husbands; stories of jealously and infidelity, obsessive friendships and affairs; intergenerational love; and vampiric and otherworldly seductresses.

Michael Curtiz Mildred Pierce 1945
Mike Nichols Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? 1966
Hal Ashby Harold and Maude 1971
Brian De Palma Dressed to Kill 1980
Andrzej Zulawski Possession 1981
Paul Schrader Cat People 1982
Paul Verhoeven Basic Instinct 1992
Bernard Rose Candyman 1992
Michael Haneke La pianiste (The Piano Teacher) 2001
Claire Denis Trouble Every Day 2001
Jonathan Glazer Birth 2004
Richard Eyre Notes on a Scandal 2006
Catherine Breillat Abus de faiblesse (Abuse of Weakness) 2013
Jonathan Glazer Under the Skin 2013
Xavier Dolan Mommy 2014

WOMEN IN REVOLT focuses on women who are badly behaved and those who embark on a newfound sense of personal freedom by rejecting social expectations. We witness the rejection of patriarchy and maternal responsibilities; stories of vengeance and revenge and situation where office politics,infidelity and bullying have murderous consequences.

Wesley Ruggles I'm No Angel 1933
Russ Meyer Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! 1965
John Waters Female Trouble 1974
Brian De Palma Carrie 1976
John Waters Desperate Living 1977
Abel Ferrara Ms. 45 1981
Bette Gordon Variety 1983
KenRussell Crimes of Passion 1984
Agnès Varda Sans toit ni loi (Vagabond) 1985
Pedro Almodóvar Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios (Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown) 1988
Mary Harron I Shot Andy Warhol 1996
Cindy Sherman Office Killer 1997
Quentin Tarantino Kill Bill: Volume 1 2003
Pedro Almodóvar Volver 2006
Lucrecia Martel La mujer sin cabeza (The Headless Woman) 2008
Ulrich Seidl Paradies: Liebe (Paradise: Love) 2012
Charles Atlas Turning 2012


Ticket Prices


Adult: $9
Student/Concession/Child: $7*
Member: $6


Adult: $36
Student/Concession/Child: $28*
Member: $24

Tickets on sale through qtix^ or at the GOMA Box Office from one hour prior to film screenings.
Booking fees apply online
5-film pass: 5 tickets to 1 film, or 5 tickets to multiple films
*Valid pensioner, seniors or FT student card required. Child aged 3–12 years, under 3 years free
†Valid QAGOMA Member or Foundation Card required
^ Booking fees apply.