Sydney Underground Film Fest wants to let the film freak flag fly

The independent spirit of filmmaking will be front and centre at SUFF 2023.

The Sydney Underground Film Festival (SUFF), to be held in September, has announced its 2023 program with the promise of letting ‘Sydney’s film freak flag fly’.

Festival Director Katherine Berger said: ‘We are really excited by this year’s program, with such a diverse mix of films that really celebrate the independent spirit of filmmaking. There are so many filmic outlaws who buck the system here. We can’t wait for audiences to come along on this cinematic adventure.’

2023 Festival highlights include:

  • Opening night film: Ukraine Guernica – Art Not War. The latest from filmmaker George Gittoes, this antiwar film follows the frontline artists daring to stand up to the Russian invasions of Ukraine and Afghanistan.
  • Closing night film: Onyx the Fortuitous and the Talisman of Souls. A wild ride full of enchantment, friendship, laughter and a dose of black magic and satanic worship thrown in for good measure.
  • Transgressive black comedies: individualistic comedy drama Hippo, directed by Mark H. Rapaport and featuring Berlinale Silver Bear-winner Lilla Kizlinger (I See You Everywhere); Lousy Carter, a witty dramedy by Bob Byington (Frances Ferguson, Infinity Baby), hot off its premiere at the Locarno Film Festival; and Poundcake, a hilarious horror satire directed by Onur Tukel (Summer of Blood).
  • Birth/Rebirth: Laura Moss debuts a psychological horror film reimagining Frankenstein, starring Marin Ireland (Sneaky Pete,The Umbrella Academy) and Judy Reyes (Scrubs, Smile).
  • Holy Mother: A Japanese gore extravaganza directed Yoshihiro Nishimura (Tokyo Gore Police).
  • Sleeping Beauties: Australian filmmaker Stuart Simpson’s latest haunting horror.

The Sydney Undergound Film Festival runs from 7–10 September 2023. More information.

Paul Dalgarno is author of the novels A Country of Eternal Light (2023) and Poly (2020); the memoir And You May Find Yourself (2015); and the creative non-fiction book Prudish Nation (2023). He was formerly Deputy Editor of The Conversation and joined ScreenHub as Managing Editor in 2022. X: @pauldalgarno. Insta: @dalgarnowrites