‘Gate Crash,’ ‘Anu,’ and ‘Earthlings’ off to MIFF

While enthralled by the hustle and bustle of NZIFF on our shores, DEGANZ congratulates members Cushla Dillon, Pulkit Arora, and Jamie Lawrence for their work making the Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) selection.

Gate Crash, edited by Cushla, will screen as part of the festival’s Accelerator Shorts 1 programme, highlighting bold works from Aotearoa and Australia. The 18-minute short offers a dreamlike snapshot of a teenage friend group after the end-of-year ball. While the teens just want to shake off the dust of high school, vibes shift drastically with the unwelcome arrival of a dropout who threatens to take things too far.

Anu, directed by Pulkit, and Earthlings, directed by Jamie, will screen in the Accelerator Shorts 2 programme. The programme’s tagline aptly states, “Preview the next generation of homegrown directors.”

Anu finds moments of gentle humour in bleak circumstances. When moving to Aotearoa amidst the turmoil of mandated quarantine, a woman must improvise offerings to complete Pind Daan, a Hindi last-rites ritual. Through this short, Pulkit has created a touching portrayal of loneliness, isolation, and letting go.

In Earthlings, Jamie offers a surprisingly sweet portrait of two outsiders longing for connection. A teenage girl loner discovers a strange injured man on her neighbour’s property who seems to have fallen from another world. Through lush visuals and tender performances, the short is a surreal, whimsical, and enchanting glimpse into fleeting intimacy.

We wish Cushla, Pulkit, and Jamie the best of luck in the festival and look forward to seeing updates!

Last updated on 19 July 2023