HOME

The Melbourne Cinémathèque is a not-for-profit, volunteer-run film society. We hold screenings at The Australia Centre for the Moving image every Wednesday night for most of the year. Admission is by membership, which can be obtained on a monthly or yearly basis.

NEXT SCREENING
CONCRETE IRRATIONALITY: THE CINEMA OF JAN ŠVANKMAJER

September 3

7.00PM – ALICE
Jan Švankmajer (1987) 86 mins M

Švankmajer’s first feature film is a free interpretation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Alice is alternately a wide-eyed young girl (Kristýna Kohoutová) and a small stop-motion animated doll, narrating her own adventures as she negotiates a menacing world populated by various Wonderland staples alongside fantastical collage-creatures from the bizarre menagerie housed in Švankmajer’s “Natural Science Cabinets” – his wunderkammern of the early 1970s. Preceded by two superb, anticipatory short works: Jabberwocky (1971) 12 mins, and Down to the Cellar (1982) 14 mins.

Digital restoration of Alice, with the original Czech soundtrack, and 35mm prints of both shorts courtesy of ATHANOR.

CTEQ Annotation
‘Chasing Rabbits out of the Hat and into the SHEDding of Childhood: Alice’ by Dirk De Bruyn.

Trailer:


9.05PM – CONSPIRATORS OF PLEASURE
Jan Švankmajer (1996) 85 mins MA

Dialogue free and largely live action, Švankmajer’s hilarious third feature has its origins in an unmade short film from 1970, Light-Bluebeard, concerning the sado-masochistic, transmutative relations between a pair of neighbours. A series of experiments in tactility conducted in the 1970s by the Group of Czech-Slovak Surrealists, at Švankmajer’s behest when he was forbidden from making films, further informs this singular comedy that features six characters participating blithely in an elaborate autoerotic roundelay. Švankmajer’s perennial interest in the sense of touch is elevated here to synaesthetic levels.

Digital restoration courtesy of ATHANOR.

Trailer:

LATEST NEWS

Melbourne Cinémathèque’s top picks for MIFF 2014

The Melbourne Cinémathèque team is taking a break for a few weeks because our equivalent of Christmas starts on the 1st of August this year. We resume screenings on the 27th of August so until then, you’ll be able to find us at The Melbourne International Film Festival. So, while we’re busy frantically planning our schedules, we thought we’d share our top picks! Check out our list over at our Facebook page.