NEW TRAILER! Luke Sullivan’s Reflections in the Dust looks to be a truly original piece of Australian cinema

Robin Royce Queere and Sarah Houbolt in Reflections in the Dust.

A trailer has been released for Luke Sullivan’s Reflections in the Dust.

Reflections in the Dust combines elements of both documentary and fiction, blending factual interviews with an ominous post-apocalyptic tale and stars Sarah Houbolt in her debut lead role. Sarah, a prominent figure in the Australian arts scene, is blind and suffers from the rare Hallermein-Streiff syndrome. She is an accomplished physical theater and circus performer, ex Paralympian and internationally renowned advocate for disabled inclusion. She has recently been invited to the United Nations to speak about the rights of women with disability.

With the camera uncomfortably shoved inches away from her face as she stands against a stark blue background, a blind girl mutters ‘I don’t believe in love because I’ve never seen it’ to a faceless interviewer in the striking first moments of the film. After that, the audience is thrust into a bleak portrait of loneliness and social exclusion set on the edge of a desolate swamp, where that same girl and her father – a paranoid schizophrenic clown – are struggling to survive. It is a place where hope has long disappeared, along with a belief in the afterlife and the existence of god. As fear, paranoia and anger consume them, the film sporadically switches between this fictional world and more interviews, until it reaches a shocking conclusion 

Reflections in the Dust breathes through claustrophobic, vivid imagery along with the physical and raw performances of the protagonists and an unsettling soundtrack.

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Reflections in the Dust will celebrate its world premiere at the 53rd Karlovy Vary International Film Festival on June 30.

The film will screen in the section Imagina, which is reserved for films with an unconventional approach to narration and style as well as distinctive and radical visions of film language. The section has screened films from Venice Film Festival Grand Jury Prize winners and Oscar nominees.

Luke Sullivan, born 1995 in Sydney, Australia, graduated from the Australian Film, Television and Radio School with a Graduate Certificate in Directing. During his time there, he directed the short film Bad Luck, Paddy (2014) which went on to screen at the Sydney Underground Film Festival. His bold, innovative and uncompromising work reflects the anxieties of a generation clamouring to find love in a disconnected world and positions him at the forefront of the next generation of Australian filmmakers. At a remarkably young age, he is now in the company of acclaimed Australian directors including Phillip Noyce (Rabbit-Proof Fence), Warwick Thornton (Samson and Delilah) and David Michôd (The Rover) who have previously screened at Karlovy Vary.

Written, directed and co-produced by Sullivan, Reflections in the Dust was shot on location in New South Wales and post-produced in Melbourne. The Backlot Films will be releasing the film in Australian cinemas this October. LevelK are handling international sales.

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