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Sydney Underground Film Festival 2020

Sydney's weirdest film fest is heading online this year with a huge lineup of nationally available short films.
By Sarah Ward
August 13, 2020
By Sarah Ward
August 13, 2020

It wouldn't be a September in Sydney without the Sydney Underground Film Festival, the city's annual roundup of strange, surreal and subversive cinema. This year, though, it's doing things differently. Yes, it's a familiar story, because SFF and MIFF have already taken this course of action — but SUFF 2020 will be held completely online, and will also be available to stream nationally.

This isn't just a case of SUFF transplanting its usual program to the virtual realm, though. In its digital guise, the fest will run more than twice as long as usual, screening online from Thursday, September 10–Sunday, September 20. And, it's purely comprised of shorts. In other words, get ready for some mighty out-there flicks in small doses.

Highlights include the latest work from The Killing of a Sacred Deer and The Favourite director Yorgos Lanthimos, and from acclaimed Canadian The Forbidden Room and The Green Fog filmmaker Guy Maddin and his regular collaborators Evan Johnson and Galen Johnson as well. From the former, you can check out Nimic, which stars Matt Dillon as a cellist who experiences a life-changing confrontation on the subway. From the latter, there's Stump the Guesser, which is an absurdist silent flick about a carnival psychic.

With more than 100 films from over 20 countries on offer, SUFF's lineup is screening in specific packages — so you can decide whether you want to binge on Aussie shorts, go for films that'll mess with your mind or opt for the absolute trippiest of cinema offerings. Short documentaries are have their own category, there's an entire program dedicated to horror shorts and another is all about OTT animation for adults.

Sydney Underground Film Festival screens online from Thursday, September 10–Sunday, September 20, with tickets available now — for $10 per session, or $55 for a full festival pass.

Top image: Nimic.

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