Revelation Film Festival Program Director shares 2023 highlights

The 26th annual Revelation Perth International Film Festival returns this month, screening at Luna Cinemas Leederville and The Backlot from Wednesday, July 12 to Sunday, July 16. With 17 documentaries, 16 feature films, an animation showcase, over 80 short films and more, the festival is packed with cinematic delights from all four corners of the globe. Program Director Jack Sargeant took us on a deep dive to reveal the music, arts and culture highlights of this year’s programme.

Fragments of Paradise – this documentary about underground / independent filmmaker, writer, poet and cinematic visionary Jonas Mekas is pretty much essential for anyone interested in the history of cinema, the artistic avant-garde and the counter-culture of the last seventy years. Mekas is an astonishing figure whose story is beautifully told here.

Werner Herzog – Radical Dreamer – another documentary about a great filmmaker, Herzog of course is a legend of cinema. I grew up watching movies such as Aguirre, the Wrath of God and Fitzcarraldo. I’m also very happy to say we’re screening his Where the Green Ants Dream at the museum as well.

What You Could Not Visualise: Rema Rema – a great ‘lost’ post-punk band, Rema Rema released one ground-breaking record. But this one record influenced so much of what followed, this documentary tells their story, but also the story of the period they helped to define.

Circus of Scars – a documentary about the legendary Jim Rose Circus! How could I not program this film?

Little Richard: I am Everything – This documentary tells Little Richard’s story with some great archive footage and it’s maybe the only documentary to include both John Waters and Mick Jagger. For a deep dive into a more soul focused performer we also have the documentary Lee Fields: Faithful Man, which is a fascinating film about the singer and his return to the spotlight.

I’m pleased that we have Nam June Paik: Moon is the Oldest TV. Like Jonas Mekas, Paik is a key figure of the twentieth century avant-garde, his work as an artist, and his understanding of video and television, remains utterly ground-breaking. To me watching this film is like experiencing pure inspiration.

SUNLIGHT: YES – Finally, I am very excited to be screening this documentary about Symbiotica’s exhibition in Fremantle. This film, and Symbiotica, are a testament to WA – indeed Australia’s – cultural cutting edge. It’s great to have the world premiere of this documentary at Revelation.

In the end that’s what I hope for, that people will come along and be inspired, they’ll see something they haven’t before, they’ll see the world in a different light, and maybe go and create their own work in music, film, art or even a circus sideshow…

Revelation Perth International Film Festival hits Luna Cinemas Leederville from Wednesday, July 12 to Sunday, July 16, 2023. For the full programme and to buy tickets, head to