The 31st St Kilda Film Festival opens on May 22nd, with a gala event at the Palais Theatre. It continues until May 31st, and ends with its Closing night Awards Night at the St Kilda Town Hall on Saturday May 31.

For his Movies at Dusk program on 3WBC 94.1FM, Greg spoke to St Kilda Film Festival director Paul Harris. To hear the interview, click on the link below:


There are screenings of the Top 100 short films, a special showcase of films from the Palm Springs Film Festival, Soundkilda, and a special tribute to home movie pioneer Ernest Singer, presented in association with the National Film and Sound Archive from Canberra.

Pioneering home movie enthusiast Ernest Singer was a Viennese immigrant and is the father of renowned bio-ethicist Peter Singer. Singer arrived in Melbourne at the outbreak of the Second World War and set up a successful coffee importing business. In his spare time filmed the standard family gatherings and stuff of everyday life. Not content to merely chronicle everyday life he soon graduated to increasingly ambitious short fictional narratives, many filmed in vibrant color and starring Ernest himself, with soundtracks and voice-over narration. Some featured his personalised logo: a spinning globe with bold lettering proudly proclaiming “Ernest Singer Presents”.

The selection of films screening in this special tribute, produced from 1953 to 1958 and never screened publicly, showcases Ernest Singer’s singular talents. They display a sophistication not to be found in most amateur home movies of the period, chronicling a long-vanished Melbourne. This afternoon of rare nostalgia will be accompanied with live music.

Following the success of The Easybeats documentary in 2013, St Kilda Film Festival digs back into the vaults to excavate The Snap And Crackle Of Pop, a 1968 feature documentary produced by ATN 7, Sydney as part of their ‘Seven Days’ series, which investigates what goes on behind the scenes in the Australian pop scene.

The Climax Five were plucked from suburban obscurity by ace producer Pat Aulton at Festival, and were groomed for stardom. The film follows their fortunes and also offers some insights into the machinations and power politics of the Australian music business of the 60s. This fascinating fly-on-the wall documentary takes audiences into a 2UW programming meeting as DJ’s Baby John Burgess, Ward “Pally” Austin and Bob Rogers decide who gets the airplay.

The musical line-up couldn’t be more eclectic, including The Castaways, Doug Parkinson, the Wild Cherries (with the legendary Lobby Lloyde), Max Merritt and the Meteors at a live club date, Phil Jones and the Unknown Blues, The Executives and a young Johnny Farnham.

Another interesting side bar of the festival is Under The Radar, a competition dedicated to the work that is being produced by young filmmakers in Australia. With increasingly easy access to filmmaking technology, there is a growing number of young people producing short films. Although the St Kilda Film Festival is an open entry competition, it is often difficult for young people to compete against more experienced film makers of an older age.
This category in the St Kilda Film Festival provides an opportunity for young film makers to screen their work in one of Australia’s most prestigious film events, encourages young film makers to pursue their craft further potentially producing future stars of cinema both in front of and behind the lens.

Under The Radar screens at the Astor Cinema on Wednesday May 28th at 6pm.

There are also filmmaker development workshops happening throughout the festival. The program addresses current industry topics, drawing representatives from filmmaking practice and industry-based organisations to discuss the trends, issues and creative practices that are influencing the Australian film industry.

Tickets and Festival Passes for all screenings except Opening Night and Closing Night Awards will be available through TICKETMASTER

Speak Your Mind