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Q&A with Alice Body, Deckchair Cinema

How did it come around so fast? It’s been a packed year of films, special guests and festivals – including the biggest-ever Darwin International Film Festival (DIFF) – but there’s just three weeks before the Deckie is packed up and tied down for the cyclone season, so make the most of the program. Off The Leash chatted with General Manager Alice Body about what’s in store.

We’ve got three weeks left of the Deckie before it shuts shop. What stands out? 

I’m really looking forward to Ali’s Wedding, our closing night film (along with Aussie doco Mountain). It got really good audiences and people just loved it. It had a limited run, like any of our films do, because we just have one screen and we’re outdoors, but it received such a good reception with some people seeing it twice, we’ve decided to put it on again. Another one I was quite excited about is Lady Macbeth. It received good reviews and I’ve heard a lot about Florence Pugh, the main actress. Her performance is astounding. It’s a period drama, pretty dark and powerful stuff.

What are your picks of the docos in this program? 

There’s a really cute movie coming up called Chicken People. It’s very kooky, about people who show chickens. It’s about the year leading up to a judging show and the people who love chickens — who have a very good idea about the personality of chickens. 

What are some 2017 Deckchair Cinema highlights? 

There were so many highlights this year. Our opening night film, The Baulkham Hills African Ladies Troupe, included a Q&A with some of the women. Their personal stories of overcoming trauma experienced in their home countries evidently made a powerful impact on many in the audience. The Darwin Festival Program Launch in June was a really great night, and of course DIFF in September was a concentrated period of buzz and excitement. 

We’ve had a great run of guests this year, including screening presentations and Q&As from Australian actors David Wenham, Jack Thompson and Osamah Sami. We welcomed our first international guest Aahana Kumra, Mumbai-based star of the Indian black comedy Lipstick Under My Burkha.

Other highlights included our Persian, Irish and Japanese movie nights, co-presented by respective community groups who sold homemade traditional desserts and even gave a couple of performances. Our monthly Deckchair Live program, new for 2017, brought some fantastic local musicians to the Deckie for some gorgeous low-key pre-film gigs. I encourage everyone to come to our closing night and help us toast to a wonderful 2017 season with live jazz and two of the most popular Aussie films of 2017.


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