Alcoholic, suicidal, depressing entertainment (Good News Week 28/7/08: 5 second grab)

A survey showing that Australian films were too depressing for audiences has been released by the Film Finance Corporation, just weeks prior to it being amalgamated into Screen Australia. If only it had had a happy ending.

Australian films are too depressing to draw crowds. But no wonder Aussie filmmakers are depressed – have you seen the size of the crowds they’re drawing? / have you seen the box office figures?

Aussie films are filled with depression, alcoholism and suicide. But that just reflects the filmmakers’ lives, especially after they see the box office figures.

But of course Aussie films are filled with depression, alcoholism and suicide. You know how hard it is to get funding?

Aussie films are full of depressing subjects like drugs and alcohol. Still, at least the characters are having fun. / have found an escape.

Because if there’s one thing less fun than spiralling into drug or alcohol dependence, it’s watching somebody else do it on a giant screen.

I don’t see why we can’t just have more feel-good tales of alcoholism and suicide.

Older and wealthier people were more likely to enjoy Australian films. The young and poor don’t need to go into a cinema to see stories of urban desolation. / The young and poor prefer to experience their tragic stories of depression first hand.

Older and wealthier people were more likely to enjoy Australian films. The young and poor are too busy enjoying Australian smack. / ice.

Older and wealthier people were more likely to see Australian films. The young and poor are too busy selling their stories to Australian script-writers.

Older and wealthier people were more likely to see Australian films. To them, there’s nothing more uplifting than a good laugh at the poor and weak.

70% of people are interested in Australian films, but only a minority in art-house movies. Perhaps that’s because no-one’s ever seen an art-house. / Because if there’s one thing more depressing than alcoholism and depravity, it’s art houses.

58% percent of people said they weren’t interested in art-house movies. Which means art-house films are way more popular than anyone would have ever suspected.

So nearly half the people surveyed were interested in art-house cinema, which makes it virtually mainstream. To actually be art-house now, you need to make films that literally no-one watches. Like Crackerjack or One Perfect Day.

A lecturer in screen studies blames Australian filmmakers wanting to distinguish themselves from Hollywood feel-good movies. By making movies where you don’t feel anything.

Mike Walsh, senior lecturer in Film Studies at Flinders University, thinks that Australian films are too depressing. Why can’t they just make nice films?

Mike Walsh, senior lecturer in Film Studies at Flinders University, thinks that modern Australian films are too depressing and arty. And music these days is too loud, you can’t dance to it. And have you seen the clothes the kids are wearing now? It’s disgraceful.

Mike Walsh, senior lecturer in Film Studies at Flinders University, thinks that Australian films are too depressing and arty. And everyone knows that art is bad. / They should all be uplifting stories about footy.

I mean, you don’t get more high-art than Priscilla.

If people want art, they can go see the Mona bloody Lisa.

He says there hasn’t been a good Aussie film since The Adventures of Barry McKenzie.

Not only should Aussie movies not be so depressing and arty, but they should all star Bryan Brown and, if possible, feature a talking wallaby.

The FFC survey found that Australian films were too depressing. And since they’d paid for most of them, that was a real downer.

But just because a movie’s about depressing subjects doesn’t mean the film itself is depressing. Many people who watch them actually just go to laugh at the appalling acting and rancorous dialogue.

The study results also clearly indicated more money needed to be spent on marketing Aussie films. But that’s just going to mean the films themselves have to be made even cheaper. Or be about marketing executives.

The study results also clearly indicated more money needed to be spent on marketing Aussie films. Apparently you can’t just rely on the recommendation of that guy at the vid store.

Of course Australia doesn’t have the budgets to compete with Hollywood blockbusters. So perhaps to make up for the special effects, we could just make the stories extra happy! A whole bunch of happy people go do happy things and everyone gets even happier! Hey, it’s worked for The Wiggles. / Hi-5.

Australians would be happy to see Aussie films if they were more feel-good. Or about toilets.

Older and wealthier people are more likely to like the typical Aussie downbeat film, while the majority prefer films like Kenny and The Castle, with characters everyone can look down on.

While depressing Aussie films don’t appeal so much to local audiences, they can do quite well overseas. Foreigners love hearing that we’re just as miserable downunder.

Australians are happy to go to local films, so long as they’re nice uplifting escapism. Like Wolf Creek.

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