Cicada
Not available for screening anymore
  1. Extra

    Cicada

    Directed by

    Australia

    2009

    9 min

    • English

    Drama, Experimental, Short

    Cannes IFF - Directors' Fortnight

    CICADA is the immersive story of a five-year-old child who witnessed a murder. Daniel P Jones confronts a traumatic memory in an incendiary, visceral monologue.

    Credits

    Cast
    Daniel P. Jones
    Screenplay
    Amiel Courtin-Wilson
    Daniel P. Jones
    Cinematography
    Germain McMicking
    Editing
    Amiel Courtin-Wilson
    Music
    Amiel Courtin-Wilson

    Director's Statement

    I met Daniel Jones seven years ago in a theatre company called Plan B, made up of ex-prison inmates in Melbourne. I was making a documentary about Plan B and had been filming rehearsals for about six months. I arrived one day and saw a guy who was standing outside the rehearsal space and I walked up to introduce myself.

    He turned around and the intensity of his gaze was physically palpable. He’d been out of jail for about 18 hours at that point. In 2006 I started conducting in depth interviews with Daniel about his childhood, life on the streets and his time in jail. It was around this time that he first told me the story that unfolds in the short film CICADA.

    Delivered as a monologue to camera in a single close up shot, CICADA is a retelling of Daniel’s first memory- a brutal execution style murder he witnessed when he was five years old. I was moved to tears by his experience and when I spoke to Danny about the impact it had on him, he quoted Oscar Wilde: ‘We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. Per Ardua Ad Astra ...’

    CICADA was a pivotal moment in my collaboration with Danny as it inspired me to develop a process that was also used in the shooting of HAIL. I interviewed Danny extensively, transcribed that material, edited it, then fed it back to him as honed dialogue in the context of dramatic scenes. In this way Danny was able to truly own the material while performing.

    Production
    FLOOD PROJECTS
    Production
    HUSSEY PRODUCTIONS

    Press

    Amiel Courtin-Wilson

    Amiel Courtin-Wilson

    Australia

    I make films to be humbled by the immensity of others - to explore what it is to be alive - to chart the chasms between people as well as the things that bind and ignite us. The intimate and circuitous human relationships forged during the filmmaking process is everything to me and hopefully each of the films screening in this program are as pure a manifestation of those relationships as possible.

    Amiel Courtin-Wilson’s first feature documentary CHASING BUDDHA (1999) premiered at Sundance in 2000 and won a slew of awards across Australia including Best Documentary at both the Sydney Film Festival and the Inside Film Awards. His other films include the multi-award winning feature documentary BASTARDY (2008), and CICADA (2009) which was selected as part of Directors’ Fortnight at Cannes in 2009. Amiel's first dramatic feature film HAIL (2011) premiered at Venice International Film Festival in 2011, was lauded by critics such as Adrian Martin as being the best Australian Film of 2011 and won the Age Critics Award for Best Australian Feature Film at the Melbourne International Film Festival, as well as best film at Fantasia International Film Festival and Fantaspoa International Film Festival. Amiel's most recent feature film RUIN, co-directed with Michael Cody premiered at the 2013 Venice Film Festival where it won the Special Jury Prize as part of the Orizzonti section of the festival and has gone on to win awards for Best Cinematography at the 2Morrow Moscow International Film Festival and Best Editing at the 56th Asian Pacific Film Festival.

    Selected Filmography