Festival Top Picks 2019



With over two weeks of mind-expanding content in this year’s program, it can be hard for the time-poor modern human to nail down a selection.

If you haven’t already got yourself a season pass and booked yourself into every session, roll your eyes over the festival team’s top picks and get out your calendar.

More than just films, we’ve picked the sessions that have the most power and potential to entertain and spark change.

For the future.

Cinema Nova Thursday, March 7 @ 6:15 pm

A visually stunning, highly immersive, poem for the planet, Metamorphosis delves deep into what it means to be alive in the present day. Lyrical and profound, it showcases a range of inspiring solutions and offers deep hope for a better world.

Metamorphosis recently won best cinematography at the international SIMA awards and the filmmakers, Velcro Ripper and Nova Ami are multi-award winning documentarians best known for Occupy Love and the Fierce Light Trilogy.

One of the Festival favourites, Metamorphosis should be high on your list.

Presented by The High Commission of Canada.  



Cinema Nova Saturday, February 23 @ 2:00 pm

Accelerate follows the story of Bill McKibben, one of the most prolific and most respected environmentalists alive today. As well as being an author of many award-winning books, Bill co-founded the largest environmental organisation on the planet, 350.org.

Bill is also largely known for his article in Rolling Stone titled ‘Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math’ and giving birth to the global divestment movement.

In the lead up to an election where climate will be vital, Accelerate paints the picture for the future we need.

Followed by a panel discussion with Kelly O’Shanassy, the CEO of the largest environmental organisation in Australia; Cat Nadel campaigner for Environment Victoria and Jacynta Fuamatu, a pacific climate warrior and 350.org member.



Cinema Nova Tuesday, February 26 @ 6:15 pm

Youth Unstoppable follows an 8 year evolution of the Global Youth Climate Movement.

If you’ve been paying any attention to the news lately then you know that there is something ENORMOUS happening right now.

Students across the globe are rising up and striking for climate action, instigated by the global phenomenon Greta Thunberg.

The children are the future, they will inherit the earth, and they have built a movement that is our last best chance at turning the ship around.

Youth Unstoppable is the only film to ever capture the Global Youth Climate movement.

Support the children building our future.

Followed by an expert panel of United Nations representatives and global youth activists including Graham Hunter, the National Co-ordinator of the Climate Change Program at the United Nations Association of Australia, Linh Do a climate journalist who attended several climate conferences and is now Climate Reality Project Australia lead and Edward Krutsch, a leading Australian Youth Climate Coalition member.

Presented by The High Commission of Canada and the United Nations Association of Australia



Cinema Nova Wednesday, March 6 @ 6:15 pm

If you’ve been reading Yuval Noah Harari, Kai-Fu Lee or Nick Bostrom then you know the radical and revolutionary changes that are on the horizon.

A SXSW darling, More Human Than Human is a fun, quirky and engaging documentary that shows us just how close we are to replacing ourselves with robots.

This future will arrive faster than we think!

Followed by an amazing panel with Katherine Bailey Accenture; Dr. Niels Wouters, Science Gallery Melbourne/ University of Melbourne; Angus Hervey, Political Economist, Journalist and Professional Speaker / Founder at Future Crunch; Giuseppe Demaio, Local Peoples & Matters Journal.

Presented by Science Gallery Melbourne and Matters Journal



Cinema Nova Thursday, February 21 @ 7:00 pm

Point of No Return is a film about courage, hope, innovation, bravery and perseverance. It gives us a glimpse into the world we know is possible and shows us that we can build the future we want.

Point of No Return is a snapshot of a moment in history and a nail-biting adventure film about a team of engineers and adventurers determined to make a difference.

Followed by a panel of local heroes including international endurance athlete and good will ambassador Samantha Gash, solar tuk tuk adventurer Julian O’Shea, and founder of Amber Electric, Chris Thompson. Moderated by the founder of Red Grid, a blockchain ‘internet of energy’ company, Dr. Adam Bumpus.  

Presented by Amber Electric



Cinema Nova Friday, March 8 @ 7:00 pm

In addition to Metamorphosis, Serengeti Rules is one of the most beautifully shot, visually stunning, films of this year’s festival. The film is a deeply mesmerising artwork about one of the most important scientific discoveries of our time.

The screening will be preceded by the World Premiere of Home Front, a short film by the Director of Breakthrough and The Sustainable Living Festival, Luke Taylor.



Cinema Nova Friday, March 1 @ 6:15 pm

When a film is made by the same producers as The Cove, Racing Extinction and Chasing Ice – three of the most profound and successful environmental films of all time – you know it is going to be good!

The Human Element, described by Grist as ‘exactly what we need to get us into gear’, is essential viewing, and one of this year’s top picks.

Find out how you can become a Human Element!

Followed by an expert panel including Katerina Gaita, founder of Climate for Change; Toby Kent, Chair of the Future Business Council and CEO of Resilient Melbourne; Sam Shokravi, Founder of Engreeneers and moderated by Mark Spencer founder of Climactic a podcast service focused on inspiring action on climate change.

Presented by MSSI and The Climate Reality Project