Australian Left Review

Article Title

Euro Paean


Jeremy Eccles


Both the upcoming Melbourne and Sydney film festivals have an eerie focus on cultural and national identity, reports Jeremy Eccles.

As a Pom, resident here for more than a decade, and before that in the ultimate trading-post of nationalities, Hong Kong, I reckon 1 have a stake in the great patriotism debate. While I'm delighted by the current flag because it's so unspecific that no one in their right mind would go to war under or over it, I suppose I want countries, regions, even suburbs to be aware of and stand tall for their own cultures (whatever meaning they want to give that word). So, to discover that both Sydney and Melbourne Film Festivals this month have as a substantial subtext the visit of a delegation of European film bureaucrats and attendant (though not so numerous) film makers, all reportedly dedicated to the concept of something called "European cultural relevance", gave me pause for thought