Unknown Pleasures: Australian independent cinema is a series of regular screenings featuring the best of Australian independent cinema, both classic and contemporary, presented in conjunction with the film-makers. It is curated and presented by Chris Luscri & Bill Mousoulis, with assistance from Colin Hodson.

The Australian cinema industry has, over many years, a poor track record in supporting and screening the work of our country's more underground and independent film-makers. This is increasingly true in the age of digital film-making, streaming and VOD, where a wealth of new film-makers are continuing to produce high-quality work, but where they encounter fewer and fewer opportunities to have their work exhibited to a public audience.

Compounding these issues is the cynical and mercenary decision of our increasingly emboldened conservative federal government to gut our arts institutions – including this country's film financing structures, notably as the Producers Offset – during a time of unprecedented global crisis. We stand in absolute opposition to this.

Unknown Pleasures is an attempt to throw some light on these under-represented films and film-makers but, more than that, an attempt to foster a sense of community (especially relevant in pandemic-created lockdown times).

We believe in the social and conversational aspect of film culture, of film-makers discussing their work formally, but also sharing a drink with the audience afterwards.

We believe in the wisdom of our elders, in the struggles of the past, in the passing down (and, in some cases, passing up) of knowledge. We like to think that we help foster a richer screening culture, and a sense of shared intersection and history. We have been involved with the Melbourne community of independent film-makers for many years now.

We believe in diversity. From CALD, LGBT+, low socio-economic and the differently abled, and also to those whose style and content differ from the norm, many film-makers profiled in our series – across the generations – are veritable case studies in the overcoming of obstacles in the pursuit of a creative, and sometimes spiritual, vocation.

We are immensely proud and privileged to be able to showcase their work, and grateful to the film-makers for giving us their unconditional trust.

Most of all, we want to see a cultural change in the way that films are exhibited in this country, a movement toward a more intimate, local model with film-makers closely and passionately engaged with their audiences.

We believe the future of independent Australian film, as the theatrical model becomes more and more bottlenecked, is dependent on this.

- Chris Luscri & Bill Mousoulis, co-curators.

Go to current 2023 program

Archive of previous programs - 2018 / 2019 / 2020 / 2021 / 2022