Alena Lodkina’s Petrol to premiere in Locarno ahead of MIFF screenings – See the trailer here

Nathalie Morris in Petrol.

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Arenamedia is delighted to announce that Australian director Alena Lodkina’s new feature film Petrol will have its World Premiere in the Locarno International Film Festival’s prestigious Cineasti del Presente section on August 5, followed by its premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival on August 11.

Locarno’s Cineasti del Presente (‘directors of the present’) program is dedicated to first and second features by emerging global talents. Petrol is the second feature by Alena Lodkina and follows the acclaimed Strange Colours (2017) which premiered at the Venice International Film Festival.

Petrol is the first Australian feature film to play in competition at Locarno since Clara Law’s Floating Life in 1996, and the first to be selected for this prestigious section, so it is a real honour.  We couldn’t be more pleased with this premiere, especially following the challenges of shooting the film during Melbourne’s 2021 lockdowns,” said producer Kate Laurie.


An Arenamedia film, Petrol stars Nathalie Morris (Bump) and Hannah Lynch. It is produced by Kate Laurie, with cinematography by Michael Latham, editing by Luca Cappelli and production design by Leah Popple. A MIFF Premiere Fund film, the film is produced with the support of Screen Australia, VicScreen, SBS and Orange Entertainment.

Petrol – the story of a haunted friendship between two young women, and the discovery of the world and self through a strange bond – is quintessentially Melbourne in its setting, the city where it was shot and edited.

Eva, an impressionable film student of Russian background, befriends an enigmatic performance artist named Mia who quickly takes hold of Eva’s imagination. As Eva moves in with Mia and their lives grow more and more entwined, Eva sets off on a surreal journey of awakening, haunted by dreams, fantasies and ghosts.

“For me, Petrol is a film about a young woman’s search of self, the strange line between self and others, the vulnerability of youth. At a time of change and discovery, when one readily loses oneself in other people, the delicate line between reality and imagination can become blurred,” said director Alena Lodkina.

Friday, August 5 – 11:30am – PalaCinema 1, Locarno

Thursday August 11th 7:00pm IMAX Melbourne, Carlton – Australian Premiere

MIFF Repeat Screenings:
Wednesday August 17th, 2022, 9:00pm, The Capitol Theatre, Swanston Street, Melbourne
Friday August 19th, 2022 9:00pm Palace Pentridge Cinemas, Coburg
Sunday August 21st, 2022 1:30pm Kino Cinema 2 – Collins Street, Melbourne (accessible/caption screening)




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