As one of the most important events in Australia, Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) is the icon that engages the public to focus on national and international culture via a wide range of films. Premiere Fund Photographic Exhibit is my first stop of MIFF, this small-scale exhibition has shown different stories behind the scenes to the audiences. After browsing these photographs, I found some films such as Acute Misfortune, Strange Colours and Under the Cover of Cloud are made by the independent Australian filmmakers. In this regard, MIFF provides a unique platform for Australian independent filmmakers to illustrate their values, inspiration, and attitudes of life and society.
This year, MIFF prepared various films from different countries, such as the Korean film Burning; Japanese Film Shoplifters and Chinese film Angles wear white. But some low-budget films, documentaries and short films made by Australian independent filmmakers attracted many audiences. These films have reflected a real state of Australia, such as the film—- Under the Cover of Cloud represented an ordinary family in Tasmania to explore our deep river of feeling and being.
ABC reported that the average budget of an Australian film was $8.7 million approximately(ABC Arts,2018). However, for these talented and passionate filmmakers, MIFF motivates them to overcome every difficulty to make the high-quality films to represent their views of this world. First-time feature filmmaker Jason Raftopoulos said the process of make a film is honestly like climbing up a mountain with a pair of thongs (ABC Arts, 2018), it is so difficult, but if an audience can get into a great festival to watch your film, it is absolute gravy. It is a significant channel for filmmakers to show their perspective from different angles via film, it is also important to gain resonance from the public. MIFF is the authentic and professional platform to establish a close relationship between filmmakers and the public.
Additionally, Ted Wilson who is one of the new generation independent filmmakers said his film “Under the Cover of Cloud” which has premiered at MIFF has cost $80,000, it means he has to finance the film from his own pocket (ABC Arts, 2018). However, Wilson still sticks to make his film, he said, getting into MIFF is so important, if the film did not get into a well-known festival, it would have disappeared. He also claimed that MIFF is the root of an independent filmmaker who needs to obtain a kind of recognition to attract more audiences to watch “your film” (ABC Arts, 2018). Indeed, as one of the oldest film festival in the world (About Us MIFF,2018), MIFF plays a key role in building a sense of connectedness and identity between filmmakers and the audiences.
ABC News. (2018). DIY filmmakers flourish at Melbourne International Film Festival. [online] Available at: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-08-04/independent-filmmakers-at-melbourne-international-film-festival/10066660 [Accessed 20 Aug. 2018].
MIFF 2018. (2018). MIFF 2018 | About Us. [online] Available at: http://miff.com.au/about [Accessed 20 Aug. 2018].