melbourne women in film festival challenges social and cultural stereotypes through comedyMelbourne Women in Film Festival (MWFF) returns 10 – 14 February 2022, exploringthe theme Laugh Louder, bringing together a dynamic program of feature and short films,web series, music videos, talks, and workshops to delve into the theme of comedy.

The program includes regular short film sessions with categories including: Freshly Squeezed Comedies, Next Gen Shorts, Freshly Squeezed Shorts and Reel Shorts.

Freshly Squeezed Comedies (Friday 11th Feb, 8:30pm) features a hilarious mix of quirky, heart-warming, horrifying, and slightly gross shorts and web series to get audiences laughing. Some highlights include:

Loving Captivity is a web series episode chronicling a single mum who reluctantly agrees to iso-date a flirt-machine who dumped her before the world changed. Produced, written and directed by Libby Butler, co-written by Lewis Mulholland and co-produced by Lewis Mulholland and Scarlett Koehne.

The Testosterone Club tells the tale of Monica, who realises she’s stuck in an unsupportive and utterly unsatisfying marriage. With a little inspiration from classic cooking sensation Gloria Jones, Monica finds the perfect recipe for a little revenge. Directed, written, and produced by Laura Jane Turner.

Next Gen Shorts (Sunday 13th Feb, 1pm) is a diverse range of films showcasing the creativity and talents of Australia and Aotearoa/New Zealand’s next generation of filmmakers, from animated and true stories to gut wrenching drama and energetic music videos. Co-presented by the School of Social Sciences, Media, Film and Education at Swinburne University of Technology, highlights include:

Beyond Hijab is the story of Sara Awamleh and the obstacles she has faced being a Muslim fashion designer after moving to Australia. Directed, written and produced Fatima El-Hassan.

Under the Rose is an animation short about the harsh reality of the prejudice of HIV/AIDS, even for a flamingo named Jack. Directed and written by Li Zhang.

From sinister Filipino folktales and dramatic true stories to vibrant musical rhythms and fantastical experimentations, the Freshly Squeezed Shorts programs present the latest short films, web series and music videos from Australian, Aotearoa/New Zealand and Pasifika filmmakers.

Program 1 (Saturday 12th Feb, 4pm) highlights include:

My Sisters, a story about facing the reality of family expectations. When June is invited by her younger sister to come over and ‘chill’, the last thing she expects is an interrogation about her lack of romantic relationships. A conversation she’d rather not face, but time has passed and her siblings have questions. Directed and written by Jess Kennedy and produced by Paige Wharehinga.

Antecedents tells the story of Christine, a woman battling to move her dementia suffering mother in to care, but finds herself reluctant to leave when it means acknowledging the loss of the mother she once knew. Directed and written by Emma Vickery and produced by Stephanie Davis.

Program 2 (Sunday 13th Feb, 4pm) highlights include:

Delta of Venus (pictured right) explores three chapters, three women, three worlds, three erotic scenes linked by their subversion of timeless myths and fairy tales. An experimental film as video essay. Fantasy re-coded. Directed, written and produced by Nancy Cao.

Orange Juice is a short film that follows Zoe, a young girl on the autism spectrum, who struggles to fit in with her peers as she attends a birthday party. Directed and written by Darcy Scales.

Reel Shorts showcases a collection of captivating documentaries delving into the true and human stories of our region. Program 1 (Saturday 12th Feb, 1pm) highlights include:

The Salty Sea Dog is the story of Madeleine Habib who has spent her life in remote and sometimes dangerous situations, using her skills as a Master Mariner to do work that many others wouldn’t dare to. Written, directed and produced by Lara van Raay.

Mawhialeo Ote Alowha (Our Love) follows Meli and her husband Avito , who with much trepidation, left the tiny atoll of Tokelau for New Zealand seeking a better life for their son. 43 years on, they find themselves pulled between family and a longing for home. Directed by Valeriya Golovina and produced by Niamh Swannack.

Program 2 (Sunday 13th Feb, 7pm) highlights include:

Pluck tells the story of Jean Neshausen (Tainui), at 73 she’s survived all the challenges life has thrown at her, including facing a battle with cancer which propels her on a mission to weave her last Korowai, a Maori feather cloak and final gift to her daughter. Produced, written and directed by Kirsty Griffin and co-directed by Viv Kernick.

Lady Lash chronicles the story of Lady Lash, a Kokatha woman with Greek ancestry. Pushing beyond all expectations she has carved a successful career in the male-dominated Hip Hop industry. Produced, written and directed by Rochelle Humphrey, co-written by Crystal Clyne and co-produced by Crystal Clyne and Carmel McAloon.

MWFF aims to expand the vision of gender equality and diversity in the Australian screen industries and culture by creating dynamic and inclusive spaces that bring diverse practitioners and audiences together to be moved by compelling, provocative and entertaining cinema. Head to mwff.org.au for the full program.

Melbourne Women in Film Festival at ACMI

10 – 14 February 2022

mwff.org.au

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Mick created TAGG - The Alternative Gig Guide in 1979 with Helmut Katterl, the world's first real Street Magazine. He had been involved with his fathers publishing business, Toorak Times and associated publications since 1972.  Mick was also involved in Melbourne's music scene for a number of years opening venues, discovering and managing bands and providing information and support for the industry. Mick has also created a number of local festivals and is involved in not for profit and supporting local charities.