The 16 finalist films for Tropfest 2019 have been revealed, a line-up spanning drama, comedy, animation and true stories that will be unveiled at Parramatta Park on Saturday February 9.
The shortlisted films, all of which contain this year's Tropfest Signature Item, 'candle', will be competing for a prize pool that includes a $32,000 Holden Equinox+, $10,000 cash and a trip to Los Angeles to meet with studio executives.
Fourteen of the finalist films are Australian, with one ('The Validation of Violet Worth') from New Zealand and one ('Notes to Salma') from Mexico.
Here they are:
'Crush' (dir. Leela Varghese) – A lovestruck queer teen racks up a hefty bill courting a cute shop girl
'Comican’t' (dir. Rory Kelly) – Three companions embark on an epic journey to a comic convention
'The Jinja Assassin' (dir. Nathan Keene, Will Faulkner, Matt Henry) – Alex Roberts is a leading air guitar world champion by night and Perth high school drama teacher by day
'Allie' (dir. Cassie de Colling) – Explores the friendship between a car enthusiast and a young girl with disability
'The Last Fight' (dir. Edward Copestick & Janyon Bolshoff) – A Bondi boxer reflects on mental health as he prepares for his last match
'Barry' (dir. Emma Vickery) – Two hearse drivers invent a heroic backstory for their deceased passenger
'Dad to the Bone' (dir. Simon Fowler) – a father interrogates four boys with terrible dad jokes after his daughter falls pregnant
'The Validation of Violet Worth' (dir. Jayce White) – A shocking claymation film concerns social media’s takeover of the world
'Can You Hear Me?' (dir. Rama Nicholas & Adam McKenzie) – A grandmother gives her devious family their comeuppance
'Notes to Salma' (dir. Michael Noonan) – A husband demonstrates his dedication to his wife with dementia
'Treetment' (dir. Matt Holcomb) – A mother-daughter bond is tested when a simple drive across town escalates into a wildfire argument
'Be You T Fool' (dir. Brendan Pinches) – An anonymous street artist reveals her secret practice of pasting portraits on the pillars of Chandler Highway Bridge in Melbourne
'Fringe Dweller' (dir. Leah Annetta & Reuben Street) – Allegra blames her failing acting career on her hair
'Safe Space' (dir, Indianna Bell & Josiah Allen) – “Four strangers. A darkened room. Shit gets weird”
'Suck It' (dir. Claire Worsman) – When a cleaning robot is outshined by a more advanced model, he must keep up with the new pace
'Evolution of a Poorly Thrown Snowball' (dir. Matthew Quinnell) – Two kids’ reckless disregard for nature may come back to haunt them.