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The 2nd Inner West Film Fest unveils this year’s full program… and it’s packed with laughter, great films, and special events!

Media Release

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2024’s Inner West Film Fest will roll out across Dendy Cinemas, Palace Cinemas, Actors Centre Australia, Marrickville Golf Club and many more locations throughout Sydney’s glorious Inner West from April 11 to 21, 2024.


“Last year’s event started off as a 1-dayer, which quickly expanded to 4. This year, we have more than doubled that, which has required a lot more scouting around the world for great content,” said Festival co-directors Greg Dolgopolov and Dov Kornits. “With a particular focus on comedy, in all its wonderful flavours, there really is something for everyone in the diverse Inner West, and its many visitors, of course.”



The Inner West Film Fest will kick off with a very special opening night event. Under a starry Inner West sky, a free one-off open-air screening will celebrate the much-loved and oft-quoted surprise breakout 2004 indie hit NAPOLEON DYNAMITE, the cult comedy that helped define a generation, and which recently enjoyed an anniversary screening at Sundance. A truly essential teen film, and an utter delight from start to finish, the deliriously entertaining cult classic will screen on its twentieth anniversary under the stars at Hole 1 of The Marrickville Golf Club. Ligers welcome. BYO footballs and tots.



This year’s program is packed with Australian content, including festival favourite Goran Stolevski’s latest work, HOUSEKEEPING FOR BEGINNERS, which won the coveted Queer Lion at The Venice International Film Festival. Driven by his characteristically punchy, powerful brand of observational storytelling, Stolevski powerfully portrays the harsh realities of life in North Macedonia.


The Australian Premiere of PAUL FENECH: OUTBACK OUTLAW COMEDIAN, from the creator of FAT PIZZA, HOUSOS, and BOGAN HUNTERS, offers not just an Access All Areas pass into Fenech’s hard-charging shenanigans, but also behind the scenes footage and commentary that will have you crying with laughter.


FIGHT TO LIVE is a riveting, profoundly inspiring documentary that follows Aussie Bare Knuckle Fighting champion “Rowdy” Bec Rawlings’ journey from victim to conqueror; from a troubled young kid in Launceston, to a mother protecting her sons from an abuser, and finally to a relentless competitor in the ring. Directed by Inner West resident Tom Haramis, who will be a guest of the festival. NSW Premiere.


HEART OF THE MAN is a poignant exploration of family dynamics, personal growth, and the power of acceptance, as a young boxer finds the courage to follow his own path despite the long shadow cast by his fight champion father. Written, directed and starring Indigenous filmmaker David Cook, who will be a guest of the festival.


Photographer and documentarian Stephen Dupont’s searing, unforgettable documentary KAUGERE: A PLACE WHERE NOBODY ENTERS is a modern-day parable of once tribal men finding their feet through the game of rugby league, and offers an eye-opening look into one of Papua New Guinea’s most infamous and violence-wracked regions.


Executive produced by Dev Patel, and a team of enterprising filmmakers based in the Inner West, starring Antonio Aakeel and Anula Navlekar and set in Sydney’s Parramatta, SAHELA is director Raghuvir Joshi's debut feature, and captures the complex, fraught emotion of a married man’s decision to confront the traditional Indian cultural values he was raised with and embrace his true sexuality.




Get ready to laugh out loud at this year’s Inner West Film Fest, with the Cannes Film Fest success story DÉSERTS, an epic road movie that winds its way from Casablanca to the South of Morocco Sahara, with gifted actor director Faouzi Bensaïdi (MILLE MOIS, DEATH FOR SALE) at the wheel. NSW Premiere.


Another Cannes success story, THE SWEET EAST is the stunning directorial debut of veteran indie cinematographer Sean Price Williams (GOOD TIME, HER SMELL, TESLA, MARJORIE PRIME), and provides an ample showcase for heartthrob-du-jour Jacob Elordi (SALTBURN, PRISCILLA), rising star Earl (son of Nick) Cave, magnetic scene stealer Simon Rex (RED ROCKET), and rising star Talia Ryder.


Blazing a trail at The 2023 Sundance Film Festival and SXSW, and scoring the Best Director prize at the Karlovy Vary Film Festival, FREMONT is a tough, gritty, but sweetly tempered tale of displacement and the surprising joys of fitting in, and boasts stunning performances from exciting newcomer Anaita Wali Zada, award-winning man-of-the-moment Jeremy Allen White (THE BEAR, THE IRON CLAW) and actor-writer-comedian Gregg Turkington (ANT-MAN). NSW Premiere.


The deliriously funny brainchild of comedian, co-writer, producer and star Esther Povitsky, the satirical comedy DRUGSTORE JUNE boasts a side-splitting support cast, including Beverly D’Angelo, James Remar, Haley Joel Osment, Bobby Lee, and executive producers Bill Burr and Al Madrigal, and promises to leave audiences grinning (and groaning) from ear to ear! Australian Premiere.


French high-stylist and stand-alone auteur Luc Besson is back with the highly original DOGMAN, a quirky collision of rich characterisation and hard-edged action to rival the director’s best work in the genre, including LEON, NIKITA and LUCY. Gifted leading man Caleb Landry Jones delivers a masterclass in outsider iconoclasm to match Besson’s bravura moves. Australian Premiere.


Three intertwined destinies, three stories of humans and their dogs, Belgian film LIFE’S A BITCH cannily proves that films about animals aren’t necessarily the domain of Disney. Filled with riotous laughter, rich characters, and bittersweet sadness, LIFE’S A BITCH is a daring look at humanity’s relationship with man’s best friend. Australian Premiere.


A film from a nation literally under siege and under attack, Ukrainian actor-director Arkadii Nepytaliuk’s satirical dark comedy LESSONS OF TOLERANCE is fascinating and urgent in its topicality and cultural relevance, inviting viewers on a transformative journey that challenges deep-seated stereotypes and beliefs. Australian Premiere.


Starring Peter Sarsgaard, Billy Magnussen and Sarah Gadon, and set in 1918, COUP! is a daringly political and provocative satire from co-writers and directors Austin Stark and Joseph Schuman, who trade in scathing humour and social commentary on issues that feel as if they were ripped from the front page of today’s newspapers. Australian Premiere.



Premiering at SXSW, I USED TO BE FUNNY is writer-director Ally Pankiw’s feature directorial debut (after helming episodes of SHRILL, BLACK MIRROR and THE GREAT), and showcases the rich talents of rising star Rachel Sennott (BOTTOMS, 2023; SHIVA BABY, 2020). A dark dramedy that’s both funny and heartbreaking in its honest and refreshing look at trauma and recovery, and how they affect the relationships and communities that shape us, I USED TO BE FUNNY cuts deeps and lingers long after the credits have rolled. NSW Premiere.

The mantlepiece of revered filmmaking veteran Denys Arcand is packed with awards, including an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for THE BARBARIAN INVASIONS (2003) and the Cannes Jury Prize for JESUS OF MONTREAL (1989). Renowned for his mastery in crafting satirical black comedy, Arcand’s latest opus TESTAMENT (2023) sees the canny master boldly delving into the clash between relationship dynamics and wokeism. Australian Premiere.


A dazzling, insightful and hilariously self-aware directorial debut from Cody Lightning, HEY, VIKTOR! is a laugh-out-loud look at the lure and price of fame as we follow the actor/director’s journey to reclaim his life and career and make one final grab for stardom twenty years after his breakout performance in the 1998 indie hit SMOKE SIGNALS. Australian Premiere.


A sweet, heartfelt paean to cinematic obsession and social awkwardness, I LIKE MOVIES is set in Burlington, Ontario, 2003… when there was no such thing as streaming and you had to leave the house to find something to watch, and potentially change your life. A winning debut from writer/director Chandler Levack, I LIKE MOVIES will warm the heart and stir the soul of anyone who, well, likes movies.



With her daring, experimental feature films PARIS WINDOW, LADYWORLD, PLEASE BABY PLEASE and GIVE ME PITY!, writer/director Amanda Kramer has subverted, well, just about everything. Kramer’s films glitter and reverberate with a strange style all of their own, and now with the director’s new documentary SO UNREAL, a direct cinematic bridge is built between Kramer’s kinky oeuvre and the films that inspired it. SO UNREAL examines cinema as a conduit for humanity’s fear, anxiety, elation, and obsession over the emerging technology at the end of the millennium. Are you ready to enter the Matrix?


In NEW BERLIN, a filmmaker travels to Colombia with his 18-year-old daughter to solve the mystery of the disappearance of his sister Bertha, among 500 virgins who went missing aboard the ship “Gloria”, which departed from Colombia in 1956. Visionary director Aleksei Fedorchenko returns to his favourite form of the subversive pseudo-documentary investigation saga, which he first explored with the award winning FIRST ON THE MOON (2004). Australian Premiere.




Screening on glorious 35mm, and set in the pre-glitz-up, then-seedy Sydney borough of Kings Cross, 2000’s Aussie comedy ANGST is the hilariously ribald tale of Dean (Sam Lewis), a cynical, unlucky-in-love video store counter-jockey who falls hard for Abi Tucker’s Goth chick May, while navigating a decidedly slacker lifestyle with his two flatmates, wannabe comedian Ian (Justin Smith) and pothead Jade (Jessica Napier). A terrifically entertaining movie time capsule, ANGST will enjoy its first cinema screening at the Inner West Film Fest since its release over twenty years ago.

 In a very exciting coup, The Inner West Film Fest will host a very special 45th Anniversary screening of writer/director William Richert’s satirical black comedy cult thriller, WINTER KILLS (1979), which comes with the very public endorsement of Quentin Tarantino, a big fan who frequently name-checks this bizarro classic. A loopy, labyrinthine trip from beginning to end, WINTER KILLS is inspired by the conspiracy theories that have swirled around the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and features an all-star cast including Jeff Bridges, John Huston, Anthony Perkins, Eli Wallach, Sterling Hayden, Dorothy Malone, Toshiro Mifune, and more (hello Liz Taylor!). This could very well be the best film you’ve never seen!



Thanks to the rise of directors like David Fincher, Ridley Scott, Spike Jonze, Jonathan Glazer and many, many more, the once humble music video clip is now recognised as a genuine artform capable of producing truly stunning, self-contained short works and mini-movies, often able to challenge full-length feature films in terms of their artistry. CLIPPED Music Video Premieres will arrive at The Inner West Film Festival 2024 for a special 1-off event celebrating music videos on the big screen.


There will not only be exceptional music video premieres never before seen from Inner West creatives, but audiences will also hear exclusive insights directly from the artists and filmmakers about how these unique clips were made. There will also be a small showing of amazing clips, which will all be in the running for official Inner West Film Fest awards and prizes.




For the first time, The Inner West Film Fest will offer festival passes, providing attendees the opportunity to watch more films and score big savings. Single tickets will be $24, with Senior/Concession tickets at $19. Festival Passes for 5 films will be available for just $100, and 10 films for $190.


The 2nd edition of the Inner West Film Fest, from 11 to 21 April 2024, comes with the generous support of Inner West Council and esteemed business partners Unexpected Guest Distillery, Crumpler,, and Blackmagic Design; venue partners Actors Centre Australia, Dendy Cinemas, and Palace Cinemas; education partner UNSW; cultural partners Canada Film Day and the Canadian Consulate; media partners FilmInk, 2Ser and FBi Radio; design partners YONDER and Solid State; and community partners Reverse Garbage, Australian Red Cross Lifebood, Rock Posters, SRL Management and The Front.


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