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Trailblazers Film Festival

February 7 to 9 at HOTA Home of the Arts
Curated by Gold Coast Film Festival

These six empowering documentaries showcase the trailblazers who have helped shape our realm, from the political realm to the curl of a breaking wave. What brings these films together is an understanding of the costs, compromises and decisive actions required to change lives.

Brazen Hussies, RBG and White Riot examine what it is to be political. Brazen Hussies and RBG jointly explore the history and significance of the 1970s to women’s rights, whether through the collective coming together of likeminded (mostly) women in Australia or a portrait of Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s ground-breaking rise to America’s Supreme Court. White Riot conversely explores how the collective experience of listening to music can bring about political change.

For Be Natural, Grace Jones and Girls Can’t Surf, the personal is political. Whether for pioneering filmmaker Alice Guy-Blaché, the immortal Grace Jones, or the surfing legends of Girls Can’t Surf, believing in their passion is political, every step they take comes at a cost and that cost must be weighed against expectations and outcomes of still unequal world.

People interested in politics, film, music, sports—or life—are all invited to HOTA’s Trailblazers Film Festival.  Reflecting on who we are reminds us of how our world came to be.

Sunday 7 February:
10.30am – Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché
4.30pm – RBG
7pm – Brazen Hussies

Monday 8 February:
5pm – Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami
7:30pm – White Riot

Tuesday 9 February:
6.30pm – Girls Can’t Surf – Queensland premiere screening, followed by Q&A with surfing great Wendy Botha, moderated by Cheyne Horan

Explore the program and book your tickets now.

Girls Can’t Surf
Queensland premiere screening – Tuesday 9 February, 6.30pm

The empowering story about how Australian and American women surfers took on the establishment to be taken seriously as athletes and not as bikini bodies. It’s the dayglo 1980s and surfing greats Jodie Cooper, Frieda Zamba, Lisa Andersen, Pam Burridge, Layne Beachley and more, are watching as surfing becomes mainstream and yet women’s surfing is left further behind. Something must be done.

Click here for tickets.

Brazen Hussies
Sunday 7 February, 7pm

Opening with women chaining themselves to Brisbane’s iconic Regatta Hotel in protest of the then ban on women drinking in pubs, Brazen Hussies unpacks the creation of Australia’s feminist movement. Drawing on rare archival footage and pungent interviews, Brazen Hussies, with wit and insight, reveals how now seemingly absurd controls and expectations on women led them to forming new grassroot networks to fight for justice and equality.

Click here for tickets.

Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché
Sunday 7 February, 10.30am

Be Natural weaves together two stories about pioneering filmmaker Alice Guy-Blaché. The first is who she is, the first women director and producer, and someone who helped developed cinema’s language. The second is why we haven’t heard about her, the personal and structural reasons that have obscured Alice’s centrality to film’s history.

Click here for tickets.

Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami
Monday 8 February, 5pm

A portrait of model, musician, icon Grace Jones. Somewhere between a concert film and a road trip, Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami takes us across the stages of Europe to her past in Jamaica. In the centre is Grace Jones, larger than life, ever funny, and in control.

Click here for tickets.

Sunday 7 February, 4.30pm

A portrait of the preeminent Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. With unrivalled access, RBG is a heartfelt yet considered examination of Ginsburg’s life and career: from her key legal battles for women’s rights, her own ground-breaking career as the second only female Supreme Court Justice, and her late stature as an icon of pop and political culture.

Click here for tickets.

White Riot
Monday 8 February, 7.30pm

A compelling study of Rock Against Racism and its founding against the backdrop of rising racism in the UK. Beginning in 1976 as a response to the popularity of the National Front, racist demagogue Enoch Powell and, most acutely, famed musician Eric Clapton’s support for Powell, Rubika Shah’s powerful documentary builds to RAR’s breakthrough 100 000 people march and punk concert at London’s Victoria Park in 1978.

Click here for tickets.


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