My Australia in New York & Palm Springs
Written by: Ayelet Dekel
My Australia, written and directed by Ami Drozd, will be showing this weekend at the New York Jewish Film Festival 2012, after packed screenings and warm audience response at the Palm Springs International Film Festival.
Drozd’s first feature film, My Australia is woven from the director’s childhood experiences. Set in Poland in the 1960s, the film follows Tadek and Andrzej, two brothers growing up in a rough, impoverished neighborhood, whose lives are changed forever when circumstances force their mother to move the family to Israel.
A powerful and immensely appealing film, My Australia engages with difficult topics – post-war anti-Semitism in Poland and neo-Nazism, Jews who remained in Poland after WWII, Jews who chose to hide their origins and live as Christians – and gives voice to those who are not usually heard in the Israeli cultural discourse.
Told from the perspective of 11 year old Tadek, these themes are filtered through the prism of childhood and the film is full of laughter as he navigates imaginatively through the strange situations of his life. Tadek is tethered between worlds, each pulling him in a different direction: childhood and adolescence, his creative inner emotional world and the external world of harsh necessity, Pole and Jew. Street smart and achingly sensitive, creative, determined, cheerful and mercurial, the film follows Tadek closely, presenting these conflicting worlds from his perspective, one of boundless curiosity and intelligence trying to cope with incomplete and often misleading information.
Funny, heart-warming and thought-provoking, My Australia is one of the best new films out this year.
See My Australia at the New York Jewish Film Festival:
Thursday, January 19th at 15:30; Saturday, January 21st at 18:30.
Join the My Australia page on facebook for news and updates.