ACMI Conversations ACMI Presents

Dystopia on Screen

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Do dystopian futures reflect our fears or are they a safe place to interrogate the realities of our political, environmental and social climate?

Are shows like Black Mirror, Cleverman, Trepalium, Altered Carbon and The Handmaid's Tale a warning of what lies ahead, dark entertainment, or cathartic escapism? What makes them essential watching? Why now, and why in our living rooms?

Join host Lauren Rosewarne with Clementine Ford, Louise Mackenzie and Adolfo Aranjuez in conversation about the bleakness that we can't seem to look away from.

About the speakers

Adolfo Aranjuez is editor of film and media periodical Metro and editor-in-chief of sexuality and gender magazine Archer. He is also consulting editor of Liminal magazine, subeditor of Screen Education magazine, and a freelance writer, speaker and dancer. Adolfo’s nonfiction and poetry have appeared in Meanjin, Overland, Right Now, The Lifted Brow, Cordite, The Manila Review and Peril, among others; his novella, Amadeo, was published by Garratt in 2014; and he previously edited for Voiceworks and Melbourne Books. He has worked with and performed for the Melbourne Writers Festival, the Emerging Writers’ Festival, ABC TV, Midsumma, the Adelaide Film Festival, the National Young Writers’ Festival, Next Wave, The Wheeler Centre, Multicultural Arts Victoria, NIDA, Queerstories, Signal, and various schools and councils. This year, he is a mentor for the Melbourne International Film Festival’s Critics Campus, and in 2017–2018 was a participant in the Midsumma Futures development program.

Clementine Ford is a Melbourne based writer, speaker and feminist thinker. She is a columnist for Fairfax’s Daily Life and is a regular contributor to The Age and the Sydney Morning Herald. Through her twice weekly columns for Daily Life, Clementine explores issues of gender inequality and pop culture. Her ability to use both humour and distilled fury to lay bare ongoing issues affecting women has earned her a huge and loyal readership amongst both women and men. Clementine’s work has radically challenged the issues of men’s violence against women, rape culture and gender warfare in Australia, while her comedic take on casual sexism and entertainment has earned her a reputation as an accomplished satirist.

Clementine’s work has also appeared in the Guardian, Cosmopolitan, Girlfriend, CLEO, Sunday Life and The Big Issue. Clementine has been a guest on ABC’s Q and A, Channel Nine Mornings and is a frequent contributor to Channel Ten’s The Project.

Louise Mackenzie co-curated the CINECITY project from 2009 to 2015, here participants make one-minute films exploring architectural ideas. She has a background in film and architecture. She is presently studying for a PhD looking at the work of French filmmaker Jacques Tati, specifically his film Play Time (1967) a film set in Paris, where none of the traditional city is seen, but instead has been replaced by a bleak modern city of glass and steel rectilinear towers, where nature has been extinguished, from both the city and its people.  She has held exhibitions on Jacques Tati’s work at the University of Melbourne "Jacques Tati_From Bicycles to Spaceships" and in the Melbourne Fringe Festival "Jacques Tati and a Sustainable Nature". She has an interest in the dystopian future city, and what they tell us about how we live in our cities today. She has curated programs at ACMI regarding the relationships between architecture & film.

Hosted by Lauren Rosewarne Dr Lauren Rosewarne is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne, Australia. In 2015, she was a Visiting Scholar at the University of Connecticut, USA and in 2011 was a Visiting Scholar at the University of Massachusetts. She currently teaches in the areas of political science and gender studies and writes, comments and speaks on a wide variety of topics including gender, sexuality, public policy, social media, pop culture and technology. Lauren has authored nine books, as well as journal articles, book chapters and hundreds of opinion pieces and popular culture columns. She has also been widely cited in academic literature. Lauren currently is a co-host on ABC Radio National’s Stop Everything! Pop culture program and co-host of Mamamia’s Sealed Section podcast.