American Essentials Film Festival 2017
This May, Palace Cinemas once again are bringing the best of American independent film to Australian screens with American Essentials. Twenty films make their Australian premiere — many hot on the heels of their world premieres at A-list festivals around the world — as the three-week festival tours five cities, celebrating the latest indie treasures in narrative feature and documentary, together with newly restored American classics.
Straddling styles from thriller to melodrama, comedy to body horror, symphonic documentary to visual art, American Essentials’ world-class program of thirty-one films curated by Artistic Director Richard Sowada reflects the remarkable breadth of contemporary independent cinema produced in the US.
Highlights of the fifteen new American Essentials narrative features include opening night film 20th Century Women, Oscar-winning director Mike Mills’ moving tale of a mother doing her best to bring up a teenage son starring Annette Bening and Greta Gerwig; Are We Not Cats, a deliciously imaginative debut of romantic magical realism; Walking Out, an incredible wilderness drama; the lean and mean thriller Detour, and Ewan McGregor’s directorial debut, an adaptation of Philip Roth’s sprawling epic American Pastoral.