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Presented by the Melbourne Cinémathèque & ACMI

Carlton and Beyond: The Melbourne University Film Society in the 1960s

Film program


Wed 18 Dec 2024

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To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the birth of the Melbourne University Film Society (MUFS), and 40 years since the first screenings of its successor, the Melbourne Cinémathèque, at RMIT in late February 1984, we conclude the year with a fully stuffed screening of a fascinating trove of films funded by MUFS and/or made by key members of the organisation in the 1960s and early 1970s. This era saw very little feature or independent filmmaking in Australia and this varied group of films represent a significant contribution to the local film culture both in terms of quantity and in terms of the free-spirited nature of the movies themselves. MUFS reached its peak of success in the 1960s as modernist art cinema and the appreciation of Hollywood auteurism became significant touchstones for programming as well as the films key figures like Brian Davies, Peter Carmody and David Minter would go on to make.

Coined the “Carlton ripple” by Bruce Hodsdon, these films reflected the increased availability of 16mm equipment, the influence of the diverse movies screened by MUFS, the importance of the critics-cum-filmmakers of the nouvelle vague, and the filmmakers’ desire to document and transform their immediate surroundings. Each of these films – from the Alan Finney-starring Hey Al Baby (1968) to the John Duigan-starring Brake Fluid (1970), – provides us with a fascinating glimpse of the burgeoning Melbourne film culture of the time, the playful realities and fantasies of university life, the rich subcultures of Carlton taking root at La Mama Theatre and MUFS itself, and a set of aesthetic provocations and challenges that are still relevant today.


Cinema 1, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

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Films in this program (Wed 18 Dec 2024)

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About Melbourne Cinémathèque

Australia's longest-running film society, Melbourne Cinémathèque screens significant works of international cinema in the medium they were created, the way they would have originally screened.

Melbourne Cinémathèque is self-administered, volunteer-run, not-for-profit and membership-driven. 

Learn more | View the 2024 program | See membership options

Melbourne Cinémathèque - Dirk Bogarde in a still from Victim

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