SBS On Demand: Spotlight on Female Directors | Movie News

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N.B. This is an edited selection of some of the movies directed by women, that are currently available for free streaming at SBS On Demand. Click the image to start viewing a film. 


My Brilliant Career

Australia 1979
Genre: Drama, Romance
Language: English
Director: Gillian Armstrong
Starring: Judy Davis, Sam Neill
What’s it about?
Gillian Armstrong’s timeless story of Sybylla (Judy Davis), a headstrong girl growing up in early 20th century Australia, who has the opportunity of marriage to a wealthy young man whom she loves, but is adamant to maintain her independence. 

In a World…

USA, 2013
Genre: Comedy
Language: English
Director: Lake Bell
Starring: Lake Bell,  Geena Davis, Nick Offerman, Jeff Garlin, Demetri Martin, Rob Corddry, Michaela Watkins, Ken Marino, Alexandra Holden
What’s it about?
An underachieving vocal coach (Lake Bell) is motivated by her father, the king of movie-trailer voice-overs, to pursue her aspirations of becoming a voiceover star. Amidst pride, sexism and family dysfunction, she sets out to change the voice of a generation.

In a World… Review

Fanny’s Journey

Belgium, France, 2016
Genre: Drama
Language: French
Director: Lola Doillon
Starring: Léonie Souchaud, Fantine Harduin, Juliane Lepoureau, Cecile de France, Stéphane De Groodt, Lou Lambrecht, Alice D’Hauwe
What’s it about?
Fanny is a Jewish girl in a French orphanage in 1943. When she and her friends are no longer safe from the Nazis, they try to flee to Switzerland. After their guide disappears, Fanny has to take the lead and help the other kids make it over the mountains.


Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, Sweden, Slovakia, 2017
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Language: English, Polish
Director: Agnieszka Holland
Starring: Agnieszka Mandat-Grabka, Wiktor Zborowski, Jakub Gierszał, Patrycja Volny, Miroslav Krobot, Borys Szyc, Tomasz Kot, Andrzej Grabowski, Katarzyna Herman, Zofia Wichłacz, Piotr Żurawski, Sebastian Pawlak, Andrzej Konopka, Marcin Bosak, Katarzyna Skarżanka
What’s it about?
A story about Janina Duszejko, an elderly woman, who lives alone in the Klodzko Valley where a series of mysterious crimes are committed. Duszejko is convinced that she knows who (or what) is the murderer, but nobody believes her.



United States of America, 2018
Genre: Thriller, Crime, Drama, Action
Language: English
Director: Karyn Kusama
Starring: Nicole Kidman, Sebastian Stan, Tatiana Maslany, Bradley Whitford, Toby Kebbell, Scoot McNairy 
What’s it about?
Erin Bell is an LAPD detective who, as a young cop, was placed undercover with a gang in the California desert with tragic results. When the leader of that gang re-emerges many years later, she must work her way back through the remaining members and into her own history with them to finally reckon with the demons that destroyed her past.

Karyn Kusama talks Destroyer 


M, 2018
Language: Kalaallisut
Director: Pipaluk Jorgensen
Starring: Ujarneq Fleischer, Angunnguaq Larsen, Klaus Geisler
What’s it about?
The first feature film from Greenland directed by a female filmmaker, Anori is steeped in myths. Anori is a tragic love story inspired by the old Greenlandic myths. Anori tells the story of a woman who believes only in all that is good in life, but when is confronted by the dark forces of nature, she is determined to bring back the light. This modern story – set amongst the incredible Greenlandic landscapes and the intensely crowded New York – takes you on a journey where myth comes to life. 

Miriam Lies

M, 2018
Dominican Republic, Spain, 2018
Genre: Drama
Language: Spanish
Director: Natalia Cabral, Oriol Estrada
Starring: Dulce Rodríguez, Carolina Rohana, Pachy Méndez, Frank Perozo, Vicente Santos
What’s it about?
Shy girl Miriam is waiting to celebrate her 15th birthday and she wants to invite her guy. So far they’ve only chatted online, and the anticipated blind date only complicates things.

Rock the Casbah

France, Israel, 2012
Genre: Comedy, drama
Language: French
Director: Laila Marrakchi
Starring: Morjana Alaoui, Nadine Labaki
What’s it about?
This film depicts a harsh reality from a human perspective, portraying the individuals literally caught in the crossfire of the Israeli- Palestinian conflict. Set in 1989, during the first intifada, the film follows Tomer (Yon Tumarkin), one of four Israeli soldiers posted on the roof of a Palestinian home in Gaza, after one of their comrades has been killed in the neighbourhood.


France, 2016
Genre: Drama
Language: French, Russian
Director: Angelin Preljocaj, Valerie Muller
Starring: Anastasia Shevtsova, Juliette Binoche, Niels Schneider, Miglen Mirtchev, Aleksey Guskov, Kseniya Kutepova, Bakhtiyar Askarov, Jeremie Belingard, Sergio Diaz
What’s it about?
Trained from an early age by rigorous, perfectionist Professor Bojinski, Polina is a promising classic dancer. She is just about to join the prestigious Bolchoï Ballet when she discovers contemporary dance. That throws everything into question on a profound level. Polina leaves it all behind and moves to France to work with famous choreographer Liria Elsaj (Juliette BInoche). Despite her determination and hard work to the point of obsession, Polina just can’t seem to break through. So she moves to Anvers in search of work – and a new life.



M, 2009
Genre: Drama, Romance
Language: English
Director: Isabel Coixet
Starring: Dennis Hopper, Peter Sarsgaard, Patricia Clarkson, Penélope Cruz, Ben Kingsley
What’s it about?
Ben Kingsley and Penelope Cruz star in this story charting the passionate relationship between a celebrated New York college professor who finds his life thrown into tragic disarray by a young Cuban-born student who awakens a sense of sexual possessiveness in her teacher.

Always Shine

United States of America, 2016
Genre: Thriller
Language: English
Director: Sophia Takal
Starring: Mackenzie Davis, Caitlin Fitzgerald, Lawrence Michael Levine, Alexander Koch, Jane Adams, Khan Baykal, Colleen Camp, Michael Lowry, Marisa Takal
What’s it about?
On a trip to Big Sur, two friends, both actresses, try to reconnect with one another. Once alone, the women’s suppressed jealousies and deep-seated resentments begin to rise, causing them to lose their grasp on not only the true nature of their relationship, but also their identities.



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