'Samson and Delilah tells the story of two Aboriginal teenagers in a remote community. They live in a sparse environment but one that absorbs all manner of cultural influences, where dot painting and country music exist side by side. Samson gets through his days by sniffing, while Delilah is the caregiver for her nana before taking a moment for herself to listen to Latino music. Their journey ranges across many of the most urgent issues concerning Indigenous people in Australia, homelessness, poverty, domestic violence and substance abuse, but it does so with tenderness, dignity, and even humour.'
Source: Adelaide Film Festival website, www.adelaidefilmfestival.org/ Sighted: 23/02/2009
'In a tiny cinema in the Latin Quarter of Paris, something very unusual for French filmgoers is on display. For five days, the programme at Cinema La Clef is devoted not to the latest Hollywood blockbusters, nor to the finest French cinema, but to the best examples of Australian Indigenous film-making.'
'The first Festival of Australian Aboriginal Cinema (La Festival du Cinéma Aborigène Australien) will showcase films that may have garnered awards at Cannes, but are nonetheless unfamiliar to audiences in one of the world’s capitals of cinematic culture. It is the first festival of its kind in Europe.'
'When Deborah Mailman and Shari Sebbens, stars of the hit 2012 Australian film The Sapphires, made the statements above they were speaking breathlessly to the media after the 2nd Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards (AACTA). Standing alongside golden-voiced songbird, Jessica Mauboy, Mailman and Sebbens were glowing with fierce pride, not just for The Sapphires' accomplishments - eleven AACTA Awards in total, along with critical success, standout local box office of A$15 million, and a global distribution deal with the Weinstein Company - but also for the nomination of ABC telemovie Mabo and the two awards won by acclaimed Indigenous ABC TV drama series, Redfern Now, which happened to be the first Australian drama series written, directed and produced by Indigenous Australians, and was watched by more than 700, 000 viewers.' (Publisher's summary)
'Warwick Thornton’s 2009 film Samson & Delilah was surprisingly untimely on a number of levels. In terms of its cinematic approach, it is a film that provokes a sense of untimeliness, as it seems out of step with other contemporary Australian films. This applies firstly in terms of the way in which the film consciously uses time in its structure—for example in the way it uses a cyclical motif to reinforce the specific way in which time impacts on the main characters’ everyday lives, while at the same time using this cyclical motif to provide humour and light relief. Secondly, the film can be untimely in the sense that it is firmly grounded in the present, which is unusual for a film set in outback Australia and one that focuses on an Indigenous story. Samson & Delilah is a contemporary story that does not displace its Indigenous characters by assigning them, and their connection to country, to history. Rather, the film situates its characters (and their struggles) very firmly in the context of country and of contemporary struggles, thereby ironically creating a sense of untimeliness. At the same time however, this means that in subtle ways, the film creates a sense of place, and by extension a sense of belonging (for both Indigenous and non-‐Indigenous experiences) that works on two different levels: inside the film for its characters, and outside the film for its audience. None of this means that the film is out of step with history, but rather that it is out of step with Australian film history, in which there has been a tendency to position Indigenous Australians in one of two main paradigms: either as ‘noble savages’ living in harmony with and on the land, or as lost and hopeless city dwellers, divorced from their culture. Neither of these paradigms allows for the many different experiences of belonging which Indigenous Australian peoples inhabit.' (Author's introdiction)