It was easy for sceptics to accuse Sofia Coppola of trading on her name when she first decided to move to the other side of the camera. Her father is, of course, the feted filmmaker Francis Ford, and she’d had parts in a string of films including his disappointing The Godfather: Part III.
But, as those who visit ACMI for the Sofia Coppola on Film ‘retrospective’ will soon discover, if they haven’t already, she is a writer-director of vision and talent.
The mini-festival, taking place from February 23 to 27, features Coppola’s four full-length films. The Virgin Suicides, based on the novel by Jeffrey Eugenides and starring a luminous Kirsten Dunst, was released to much acclaim. Dreamy and mesmerising it set the tone for Coppola’s films to come: the Oscar-winning Lost in Translation, the slight and disappointing (if you ask us, anyway) Marie Antoinette, and the under-rated Somewhere.
What we love most about her films though is the focus on complex, mysterious female protagonists. Oh, and the rocking soundtracks.
Sofia Coppola on Film
ACMI, Federation Square, Melbourne 3000
23–27 February 2012
For session times and bookings, www.acmi.net.au