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'The focus of this special issue of Continuum is on the international or 'offshore' life of Australian film and television, shifting attention away from questions of national self-interactions of its production, both past and present...'
'Skippy the Bush Kangaroo is one of Australia's all-time most successful cultural exports. Sold to 128 countries and dubbed into 25 languages, it had a global audience in the early 1970s of more than 300 million. Yet Skippy has always has received remarkably little critical attention. A significant reason for this is that it has always resisted being taken seriously...'
'This paper introduces, and considers how best to write about, a genre of Australian television programming that I call ‘travelling television’, a genre that stretches from (before) the Leyland Brothers to Steve Irwin, and from Australian Walkabout (1958) to Bush Tucker Man (1988–1990) and beyond. The long history of this genre makes it a useful form through which to ask some very basic questions about broadcast television. I do that here by taking up some suggestions about the changing nature of television by the novelist and essayist, David Foster Wallace, focusing in particular on questions of representation, referentiality and ontology that, in the end, may offer a useful contribution to television scholarship from offshore...'
'This essay discusses transnational dimensions of the Indigenous musical film The Sapphires, based on the true story of an Aboriginal all-girls soul band that entertained American troops in the Vietnam War. It suggests that there are strong resonances between the film's story of four young Indigenous women who affirm their Indigenous identity while negotiating their way across national and cultural borders and contemporary Indigenous filmmakers operating in Australia's rapidly internationalizing mainstream screen industry. It argues that while the original Sapphires' adopted the American musical genre of soul as a means of breaking free from colonial forms of social restriction and racism, The Sapphires appropriates the film genre of the musical to tell the story of this all-girls group in ways that transpose the musical into an Indigenous cultural realm...'
'Australia's cultural and political life is dominated by the image of the boat, most recently in the form of border anxiety concerning asylum seekers arriving by boat from the north. In this context, it is surprising to note the cinematic refrain of a literal absence of boats in Asian Australian ‘boat stories’ on screen, by which the visual iconography of the boat (as a physical object) is disavowed at the same time as it is underscored and over-exploited in the service of a certain kind of politicized cinema...'
'In this article I focus on the offshore life of The Adventures of Barry McKenzie and its big budget sequel to demonstrate the value of Australian cultural history to the field of screen studies and researchers interested in the transnationality of Australian cinema. The concept of historical mobilities and ‘routes’ helps us move beyond discourses of the Australian film revival, home-grown types and tropes and colony versus mother country to consider the creative influence of cosmopolitan bohemian and avant-garde movements in which the film-makers honed their craft and aesthetics, the offshore creative context, notably British satire, and the experience of cross-border travelling itself – and obstructions to that act – which is the central thematic and narrative concern of both films...'
'Peter Weir's 1981 feature film, Gallipoli, is perhaps the most influential modern text on the 1915 campaign in Turkey. Underpinned by a radical nationalist interpretation of events, Weir's film is a text that reinforced Australian (and Turkish) national mythologies and simplified a complex multiethnic campaign with key international linkages through its exclusive interrogation of the British–Australian imperial relationship. Weir's film has been profoundly influential in educational circles both within and beyond Australia. The limitations of the nationalist paradigm have increasingly been challenged in the new millennium by historians and filmmakers who have reinterpreted Gallipoli through a more layered and nuanced transnational lens...'
'Although women are a minority in key creative areas in Australia, they have played a major international role in relation to perceptions of Australian cinema and industry, and as creative talent within global cinema. This article outlines how Australian women have facilitated the global flow of film industry practitioners as they work with international money and talent, and exchange ideas through their films. It examines key patterns of the international reception of films by Australian women, and explores their contribution to ‘cinematic internationalism’. It argues women film-makers have been central to the reception of Australian cinema and industry internationally, and a small number of women have had extensive reach through films that communicate female perspectives...'
'This article examines elements of German reception of the Aboriginal Australian film Samson and Delilah (2009). There is a discrepancy between the film's recognition at the Cannes Film Festival and its less enthusiastic audience reception. On the basis of qualitative interviews with German viewers, this article traces some of the patterns of reception and shows that audiences did not recognize the cultural codes of Aboriginal sovereignty and agency contained in this film. Instead, Samson and Delilah has largely been interpreted through dominant German cultural frameworks on race and racism. The film's reception has thereby resulted in the opposite effect of a racialized construction of social problems conferred upon Aboriginal Australians. The main reason for different comprehension of the film's cultural codes, as this study argues, lies in the lacking rendition of culturally unfamiliar codes...'