Sydney Underground Film Festival (SUFF) has announced its 2022 program – its first in-person edition since 2019. This year’s festival will move from its previous home at Marrickville’s Factory Theatre to Event Cinemas George Street, where features and documentaries, shorts and more will screen from September 8 to 11. An ancillary virtual program will stream online from September 12 to 25.
As ever, this year’s program includes hilarious, left-of-centre, grotesque and oddball new films from across the globe, all made by independent and alternative filmmakers. Opening night kicks off the festival with the international premiere of I Love My Dad, based on writer, director and star James Morosini’s experience of being catfished by his own, estranged, father (played in the film by Patton Oswalt).
The festival will close with Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon by Iranian-American director Ana Lily Amirpour. Set in swampy New Orleans, this fantastical Southern Gothic film stars Jeon Jong-seo as a young woman who escapes from an asylum and meets an oddball cast of characters – including an exotic dancer (Kate Hudson) – on her travels.
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In between opening and closing nights, expect horror-comedy Bodies, Bodies, Bodies, starring Saturday Night Live’s Pete Davidson, Amandla Stenberg (The Hunger Games) and Maria Bakalova (Borat Subsequent Moviefilm), in a story by Cat Person author Kristen Roupenian that’s directed by Dutch filmmaker Halina Reijn in her English-language debut. There’s also indie horror flick Pig Killer, based on a real-life serial killer and pig farmer; On the Count of Three, a tragicomedy feature from comedian Jerrod Carmichael; and Norwegian film Sick of Myself.
This year’s slate of documentaries includes I Get Knocked Down, following former Chumbawamba singer Dunstan Bruce as he tries to reconcile creating a chart-topping song (Tubthumping) with his anarchist ideals, watches the world fall apart and regains his mojo as he nears 60. There’s also In the Court of the Crimson King, about English prog-rock band King Crimson; Pub: The Movie, celebrating Melbourne musician and satirist Fred Negro, with appearances from Tim Rogers (You Am I), Greg Macainsh (Skyhooks), and Paulie Stewart (Painters and Dockers); and Nightclubbing: The Birth of Punk Rock in NYC, about iconic New York nightclub Max’s Kansas City, where Andy Warhol, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop and David Bowie were regulars.
As ever, SUFF’s various short-film series will return, including Re: Animation (animated shorts), Love/Sick (expressions of sexuality), Homebaked (Aussie-made shorts), Reality Bites (documentary shorts), Sh!t Scared (horrors) and WTF (those shorts that you can’t categorise).
The 16th Sydney Underground Film Festival will run from September 8–11 at Event Cinemas George Street, and select films will screen online from September 12–25. Tickets are now on sale.