Island of the Hungry Ghosts

V'18

Island of the Hungry Ghosts

Gabrielle Brady
D/GB/Australien, 2018
Features, 94min, OmeU

© Viennale © Viennale © Viennale

Island of the Hungry Ghosts

Gabrielle Brady
D/GB/Australien, 2018
Features, 94min, OmeU

Cast: 
Poh Lin Lee
Screenplay: 
Gabrielle Brady
Sound: 
Leo Dolgan
Camera: 
Michael Latham
Editor: 
Katharina Fiedler
Composer: 
Aaron Cupples

Production: 
Chromosom Film
Third Films
Various Films
Echotango
World Sales: 
Autlook Filmsales
Format: 
DCP
Color

Christmas Island, an isolated part of the world, located between Indonesia and Australia, is one of the of-territory sites Australia uses to detain people seeking refuge or asylum (or a better life) on its territory proper. The tropical island is also the site of another kind of migration: Usually at the beginning of the wet season thousands of red crabs make their way from the forest to the sea shore, a passage that finds protection from the people on Christmas Island. In one scene in Gabrielle Brady’s documentary we see her protagonist, the therapist Poh Lin Lee, carefully clearing the road in order to avoid crab roadkill. Her main task on the island (and her vocation, we may surmise) is to help some of the detainees on the island, who suffer from the uncertainty of their status, and who often react by harming themselves. Poh Lin Lee ofers an original therapy using a sandbox as a device to address trauma. ISLAND OF THE HUNGRY GHOSTS is as much a subtly radical political documentary as it is a deeply moving meditation on extreme conditions in a place haunted by ghosts of all kind – the biggest ghost being the unjust world order against which there is no easy offering. (Bert Rebhandl)

Gabrielle Brady: LOS PANTALONES ROTOS (2013, K), THE ISLAND (2014, K), STATIC MIRACLES (2018, K)