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“What Are They Talking About ?!”

  • March 14th, 2007
  • Posted by 7thmin

isabelle-draux.jpgIsabelle Draux says audiences at an Australian film festival in Europe may be wondering about the down-under language, or famous Australian myths like the story of Ned Kelly.

Australia’s embassies regularly co-operate with the Australian Film Commission to showcase some of the country’s movie output, and in the process diversify their diplomatic image.

Next week at Brussels (19-23.3.07) an Australian film festival is taking place at the city’s renowned cultural centre, Espace Senghor.

On the program: Radiance, Japanese Story, The Wog Boy, The Man Who Sued God, Ned Kelly, Australian Rules and Three Dollars.

The convenor and Embassy spokesperson, Isabelle Draux, said it was true that even people with a good command of English were surprised by the argot – slang- used in films like Australian Rules, but they also liked the “charming flavour” of it.

As for Ned Kelly, (this version with Heath Ledger, Orlando Bloom, Naomi Watts and Geoffrey Rush), the tale of the 19th Century bank robber might not be known as a real-life story.

“It would be interesting, after such a movie had been shown at our festival, to tell people about Ned Kelly and that this was not just a myth or a legend, but a real man”, she said.

Screening films from the Australian repertoire helped with doing the country’s work overseas.

“It’s a case of movies being able to show Australia in its diversity and complexity, in not only the usual representation of Australia being beautiful, in nature … but in the way people live, with different communities.

“For example the film Radiance is about three aboriginal sisters; we have The Wog Boy which shows another aspect of Australian society, and Three Dollars is a story that could happen anywhere, but has a unique Australian character.

“Our work is focused on the European Union so it is policy and trade, being of very high importance to Australia.

“It is important however for us in Australia also to show that Australia has other things to offer and is a very sophisticated country.”

Information: [email protected]

Picture: Isabelle Draux has been promoting this month’s Australian Film Festival in Brussels.