To celebrate its 85th birthday, Ritz Cinemas in Sydney’s Randwick has announced ‘Australia on Celluloid’, a year-long program of classic local films presented on 35mm prints.
Kicking off celebrations will be Phillip Noyce’s 1978 film Newsfront on July 30. The director will join the screening via Zoom, while producer David Elfick and star Chris Haywood will appear in person for a post-screening Q&A.
Among the other films to screen over the course of the year are They’re A Weird Mob, The Adventures of Barry McKenzie, Sunday Too Far Away, Storm Boy, Jeddah, Breaker Morant, Alvin Purple, Gallipoli and Malcolm.
In a statement, Ritz Cinemas marketing manager Jaymes Durante said: “This landmark retrospective will give audiences a new opportunity to engage with Australia’s cinematic legacy, whether it’s by revisiting the classics that have shaped our cultural landscape, or by discovering hidden and overlooked gems which demand reassessment. Australia on Celluloid seeks to shine a light on our country’s vast film output and to magnify its quality.”
Throughout the retrospective, audiences will also be joined by Bruce Beresford (The Adventures of Barry McKenzie, Don’s Party, The Getting of Wisdom, breaker morant), Tom Burlinson (The Man From Snowy River), Jocelyn Moorehouse (proof), Nadia Tass (Malcolm, The Big Steal), Richard Brennan (Long weekend, stir) and Greta Scacchi (The Coca-Cola Kid).
Screenings will occur every Saturday at 4pm, with select films accompanied by discussions with the filmmakers. Encore screenings will happen every Monday at 6:30pm.
The program is presented in partnership with the National Film and Sound Archive and Umbrella Entertainment, with 35mm screenings from the NFSA’s Kodak/Atlab and Deluxe/Kodak collections presented together for the first time.
Between 2000 and 2011, the NFSA worked with sponsors Deluxe Sydney and Kodak Australasia to preserve 75 classic Australian films in a new 35mm print format for theatrical screenings. The original titles were color re-graded, had scratches and flaws removed, and soundtracks remastered to Dolby Digital standard.
“The new revived 35mm prints of these Australian classics maintain the original integrity of the original films envisioned by their creators. Thanks to this partnership and support of sponsors, they can be appreciated by contemporary audiences in theaters like the Ritz,” said an NFSA spokesperson.
Ritz Cinemas will also celebrate its birthday via another program, ’85 Films in 85 Days’ – starting with a new 4K restoration of 1937’s A Star Is Born, released the same year the theater opened. The retrospective moves through time, with one film representing each year of the Ritz.
The complex has also undergone an upgrade with “surrealist-inspired” internal renovations to its foyers and bars, as well as new luxury armchairs in cinemas, the stage expanded in the historic cinema 1, and the balcony bar expanded to include more local wines and beers, including 10 dedicated craft beer taps.
Three new cinemas will be added to the Ritz later in the year.
Australia on Celluloid full program:
Newsfront – Saturday, July 30, 2pm + Monday, August 1, 6.30pm
Walk Into Paradise – Saturday, August 6, 4pm + Monday, August 8, 6.30pm
They’re a Weird Mob – Saturday, August 13, 4pm + Monday, August 15, 6.30pm
The Adventures of Barry McKenzie – Saturday, August 20, 4pm + Monday, August 22, 6.30pm
A Street to Die – Saturday, August 27, 4pm + Monday, August 29, 6.30pm
The Man From Snowy River – Saturday, September 3, 4pm + Monday, September 5, 6.30pm
The Man From Hong Kong – Saturday, September 10, 4pm + Monday, September 12, 6.30pm
Sunday Too Far Away – Saturday, September 17, 4pm + Monday, September 19, 6.30pm
Don’s Party – Saturday, September 24, 4pm + Monday, September 26, 6.30pm
Oz – A Rock ‘n’ Roll Road Movie – Saturday, October 1, 4pm + Monday, October 3, 6.30pm
StormBoy – Saturday, October 8, 4pm + Monday, October 10, 6.30pm
Caddy – Saturday, October 15, 4pm + Monday, October 17, 6.30pm
backroads – Saturday, October 22, 4pm + Monday, October 24, 6.30pm
The Getting of Wisdom – Saturday, October 29, 4pm + Monday, October 31, 6.30pm
The Picture Show Man – Saturday, November 5, 4pm + Monday, November 7, 6.30pm
The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith – Saturday, November 12, 4pm + Monday, November 14, 6.30pm
Jeddah – Saturday, November 19, 4pm + Monday, November 21, 6.30pm
Long weekend – Saturday, November 26, 4pm + Monday, November 28, 6.30pm
breaker morant – Saturday, December 3, 4pm + Monday, December 5, 6.30pm
stir – Saturday, December 10, 4pm + Monday, December 12, 6.30pm
The Coca-Cola Kid – Saturday, December 17, 4pm + Monday, December 19, 6.30pm
The Killing of Angel Street – Saturday, January 14, 4pm + Monday, January 16, 6.30pm
Wrong Side of the Road – Saturday, January 21, 4pm + Monday, January 23, 6.30pm
kangaroo – Saturday, January 28, 4pm + Monday, January 30, 6.30pm
Lonely Hearts – Saturday, February 4, 4pm + Monday, February 6, 6.30pm
Love Serenade- Saturday, February 11, 4pm + Monday, February 13, 6.30pm
We of the Never Never – Saturday, February 18, 4pm + Monday, February 20, 6.30pm
Monkey Grip – Saturday, February 25, 4pm + Monday, February 27, 6.30pm
The Clinic- Saturday, March 4, 4pm + Monday, March 6, 6.30pm
Man of Flowers- Saturday, March 11, 4pm + Monday, March 13, 6.30pm
Alvin Purple- Saturday, March 18, 4pm + Monday, March 20, 6.30pm
My First Wife- Saturday, March 25, 4pm + Monday, March 27, 6.30pm
Burke & Wills- Saturday, April 1, 4pm Monday, April 3, 6.30pm
Fran – Saturday, April 8, 4pm + Monday, April 10, 6.30pm
manganinnie – Saturday, April 15, 4pm + Monday, April 17, 6.30pm
Gallipoli – Saturday, April 22, 4pm + Monday, April 24, 6.30pm
Malcolm – Saturday, April 29, 4pm + Monday, May 1, 6.30pm
The Fringe Dwellers – Saturday, May 6, 4pm + Monday, May 8, 6.30pm
The Year My Voice Broke – Saturday, May 13, 4pm + Monday, May 15, 6.30pm
The Tale of Ruby Rose – Saturday, May 20, 4pm + Monday, May 22, 6.30pm
shame – Saturday, May 27, 4pm + Monday, May 29, 6.30pm
sweeties – Saturday, June 3, 4pm + Monday, June 5, 6.30pm
The Big Steal – Saturday, June 10, 4pm + Monday, June 12, 6.30pm
Return Home – Saturday, June 17, 4pm + Monday, June 19, 6.30pm
Father – Saturday, June 24, 4pm + Monday, June 26, 6.30pm
proof – Saturday, July 1, 4pm + Monday, July 3, 6.30pm
dingo – Saturday, July 8, 4pm + Monday, July 10, 6.30pm
no worries – Saturday, July 15, 4pm + Monday, July 17, 6.30pm
The Last Days of Chez Nous – Saturday, July 22, 4pm + Monday, July 24, 6.30pm