World Movies channel will mark International Women’s Day with a “Wonder Women” showcase -films significantly featuring women from around the world – both in front of and behind the camera.
Hosted by Gretel Killeen, the showcase includes the Australian TV premiere of The Handmaiden (South Korea) and Zoology (Russia), plus Mustang (Turkey), Girls Lost (Sweden) and B for Boy (Nigeria).
“I’m thrilled to bits to have this opportunity to celebrate these amazing films with World Movies. We’re proud that women, the men who support women, brave casts and crews and incredible women’s stories continue to be seen, shared and treasured,” said Killeen.
“World Movies’ Wonder Women showcases five nights of world-class, cutting-edge films about fearsome, fabulous and feisty women. It was hard to whittle it down to five, but each film that we’ve selected is an important perspective in the picture that paints the increasingly powerful wondrousness of women and film.”
Chris Keely, SBS General Manager of Subscription Television, said:
“World Movies has been bringing audiences the best in world cinema for 21 years. Celebrating the accomplishments and creative output of women in film industries across the globe is something that World Movies does throughout its schedule and we are particularly excited to be working on this feature with Gretel Killeen to recognise International Women’s Day.”
Mustang (2015, Turkey)
Wednesday, 8 March 8.30pm
2016 Oscars nomination for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year and 2016 Golden Globes nomination for Best Motion Picture – Foreign Language. Young orphaned Turkish girl Lale (Güneş Şensoy) and her four sisters (Doğa Doğuşlu, Elit İşcan, Tuğba Sunguroğlu, İlayda Akdoğan) are walking home from school, playing innocently with some boys. However, the ‘immorality’ of their play sets off a scandal. The family home is progressively transformed into a prison; instead of attending school, the girls are forced to learn homemaking skills, and talks of arranged marriages soon begin. Discontented, the five sisters, who share a common passion for freedom, find ways of getting around the constraints imposed on them.
Zoology (2016, Russia)
Thursday, 9 March 8.30pm
Australian Television Premiere**
A first on Australian TV, Zoology tells the story of middle-aged zoo worker Natasha (Natalya Pavlenkova), who lives with her mother in a small coastal town. She feels stuck in a life that holds no surprises, until one day she grows a tail – and her life is turned upside down. Embarrassed at first, Natasha decides to go further with the transformation and use it as an opportunity to redefine herself as a person and as a woman. With the new appendage, Natasha begins a life that she has never experienced before – she starts a relationship with a man, and goes out and allows herself to be foolish for the first time in her life. But her ‘second puberty’ eventually comes to an end and Natasha has to make a choice between reality and illusion.
Girls Lost (2015, Sweden)
Friday, 10 March 8.30pm
Three adolescent girls Kim (Tuva Jagell), Momo (Alexander Gustavsson), and Bella (Wilma Holmén) are bullied at school. This all changes, however, when Bella finds a mysterious seed which blooms a flower in just one night – and the three girls goad each other into drinking the sap. Waking up, the girls discover they are now boys, and while the effects wear off by daytime, the changed perspective and confidence stays with them. Girls Lost is a story of gender construction, and how to know who you are when society is telling you who you should be.
The Handmaiden (2015, South Korea)
Saturday, 11 March 8.30pm
Directed by acclaimed director Park Chan-wook (Oldboy, Snowpiercer), The Handmaiden is a South Korean lesbian erotic thriller based on the novel Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. 1930s Korea, in the period of Japanese occupation, Sookee (Kim Tae-ri) is hired as a handmaiden to a Japanese heiress Hideko (Kim Min-hee) who lives a secluded life on a large countryside estate with her domineering uncle (Jo Jin-woong). But the handmaiden has a secret. She is a pickpocket recruited by a swindler posing as a Japanese Count (Ha Jung-woo) to help him seduce the Lady to elope with him, rob her of her fortune, and lock her up in a madhouse. The plan seems to proceed according to plan – until Sookee and Hideko discover some unexpected emotions.
B for Boy (2016, Nigeria)
Sunday, 12 March 8.30pm
An award-winning directorial debut from Chika Anadu, B for Boy is a drama film which explores feminism and social issues facing Nigerian women. Amaka (Uche Nwadili) seems to be living a perfect life as an independent, modern Nigerian woman. She has a successful job, is in a happy marriage, has a loving daughter, and is pregnant. All seems well until her mother-in-law (Ngozi Nwaneto) tells Amaka that unless she has a boy, she will find a second wife for son. While Amaka’s husband (Nonso Odogwu) is away on a business trip, Amaka suffers a miscarriage. Fearful of her husband and mother-in-law finding out, Amaka wears a pregnant body suit in order to disguise her body. When her due date draws near, Amaka goes through great lengths to illegally purchase a baby boy from another woman named Joy (Frances Okeke).