Best show in town: Tickets still available for NIFF

IT'S NOT too late to book your tickets and be part of the Opening Night film and party at this year's Noosa International Film Festival (NIFF) on Friday 26 October.

Festival celebrations kick off with a pre-film party under the stars as Noosa celebrates the Queensland premiere of the critically acclaimed Aussie black comedy feature, Book Week.

Recently reviewed by Australia's most trusted movie industry source, FilmInk who described Book Week as "Wittily scripted, sharply characterised and smartly performed - a little gem of a film… nothing short of a cinematic page turner". 

Not surprisingly, Book Week was fully sold out for its world premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival earlier this year and rave reviews continue to mount up.

The film revolves around a rather mean spirited and self-centered high school English teacher, Nicholas Cutler and the Aussie school tradition of dressing up for book week. 

Eight years ago, Nick achieved moderate success when a book of his was published though he was more famous at the time for his boozy bad behaviour that accompanied the book's launch. Fast forward to today, and while Nick finds himself a disillusioned teacher of equally disinterested students it looks as though his dream of revisiting his early literary success might just be possible again. He has drafted a trashy zombie story and it looks set to be picked up by a hip publishing company if only Nick doesn't sabotage his own opportunity. 

Book Week manages to cleverly celebrate the joy of reading and learning but also the ability of people to change for the better.  

Underneath a crumpled, mean spirited and irresponsible exterior, you get the feeling there is a lot more lying below the surface with Nick Cutler - and the film develops beautifully to reveal a few surprises.

Writer and director Heath Davis, a teacher and journalist himself, is passionate about his desire to tackle illiteracy - something he sees as an endemic social problem.

Davis explains how he hopes Book Week will "encourage kids and adults to switch off their iPhones and pick up a book or pen… Everywhere you go people are using hand held devices usually to play games or keep themselves up to date on social media. We really want to drive people back into reading and writing, using their imaginations, opening their minds and experiencing life not just via Facebook," he said.

Filmgoers will have the chance to hear from Heath Davis during an audience Q&A after the screening.

"It really is an event not to be missed," said Festival President Holly Pittman.

"If you'd like to mingle on the blue carpet with today's industry leaders like Heath Davis and our Founding Patron, Academy Award-winning cinematographer John Seale who's spent his life making award-winning films, then this is the event for you," she said.

Tickets to the NIFF Opening Night film and party are $65 or $30 for the film and Q&A only.

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