Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Film Festival Promises Exceptional Cinematic Experiences

Film and Arts Mackay (FAM) is renowned for delivering alternative cinema to the region and their flagship event, the Mackay International Film Festival, is returning across two weekends in 2023.

Showcasing a diverse range of thought-provoking stories from around the world, the festival will screen six films, beginning with Three Thousand Years of Longing on Saturday, July 29 at Pinnacle Playhouse.

Described by The Guardian as “a heartfelt Aladdinesque adventure for grownups”, visionary director George Miller of Mad Max fame brings a vibrant fantasy and romantic drama celebrating the power of storytelling.

Tilda Swinton plays Dr Alithea Binnie, an academic who is content with life and a creature of reason.

While attending a conference in Istanbul, she happens to encounter a Djinn, played by Idris Elba, who offers her three wishes in exchange for his freedom.

The Djinn tells Alithea of fantastical stories from his past until eventually, filled with doubt and caution, she is beguiled and makes a wish that surprises them both.

The annual Pinnacle Playhouse screening offers a unique opportunity to catch this “mythical extravaganza” in one of the Pioneer Valley’s most iconic venues.

Mackay locals also have the option of a coach transfer, meal and film package, which includes a ticket to the film, a return coach transfer from Mackay CBD and dinner at the Pinnacle Pub, all for $60 for FAM members and $65 for non-members.

The package has been known to sell out, so make sure to visit to secure your spot for an exceptional night of good food, world-class culture and great company.

The festival will continue at BCC Cinemas Mount Pleasant the following weekend, kicking off on Friday, August 4 with the Opening Night Event and a screening of French comedy The Innocent – canapes and drinks after the film are included in the $30 ticket.

Saturday’s screenings include The Blue Caftan and Limbo, featuring a very special in-person discussion led by former ABC presenter and conversational expert Kim Kleidon with acclaimed writer and Limbo director Ivan Sen.

Academy award-winning The Whale will compel audiences on Sunday, followed by a screening of 2022 Spanish-Italian drama Alcarràs.

For tickets and more information, visit

Mackay International Film Festival Program

Pinnacle Playhouse, Pioneer Valley

Saturday, July 29

7pm – Three Thousand Years of Longing

BCC Cinemas Mount Pleasant

Friday, August 4

7pm – The Innocent

Saturday, August 5

4pm – The Blue Caftan

6.30pm – Limbo, Followed by Director Q&A

Sunday, August 6

4pm – The Whale

6.30pm – Alcarràs

Mackay International Film Festival commences with a screening of Three Thousand Years of Longing at Pinnacle Playhouse

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