National Film and Sound Archive of Australia

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Cane Toads - An Unnatural History
Cane Toads exposes one of the most bizarre biological blunders of all time. In 1935, in a strategic operation designed to save the nation's sugar cane crop from destruction by the greyback beetle, the Queensland Government imported a sackload of…
Thomson of Arnhem Land
In 1933, a state of panic erupted in Darwin after five Japanese fishermen and three white men were killed by Aboriginal clansmen on the east coast of Arnhem Land. Donald Thomson, a young anthropologist working in the field, was appalled…
Dreamings - The Art of Aboriginal Australia
The art of Aboriginal Australia is celebrated in Dreamings as we journey into the sacred heartland of Australia to see traditional artists at work. The artists talk of their work, its association with the land and its spiritual connection with…
Trafficked: The Child Sex Trade
The trafficking of women and children for prostitution is a global problem. The United Nations estimates that more than one million children are forced into sexual slavery each year. Some of them are trafficked into Australia. This powerful documentary follows…
No Strangers Here
No Strangers Here is a fictionalised account of a family of "new Australians" arriving in their new home town. The family (mum, dad, girl and boy) are displaced persons from Northern and Eastern Europe. Produced for the Department of Immigration…
Life at 1
How do you give a child the best chance in life? Life at 1 is the first instalment in a landmark series that aims to unlock the secrets of child development by following 11 babies and their families for seven…
2 videos
Spinning Out
One in a hundred people will develop schizophrenia at some time in their lives - but what do we know about this mysterious illness which fills more hospital beds than any other illness? Spinning Out is unlike any other film…
Unfolding Florence - The Many Lives of Florence Broadhurst
"Almost everyone thinks they know who I was and, of course, everyone thinks they know who killed me..." But what acclaimed director Gillian Armstrong reveals in this spirited and highly original documentary is that almost nothing about Florence Broadhurst was…
Facing the Music
In their fifth major film together, acclaimed documentary makers Bob Connolly and Robin Anderson step inside the halls of Sydney University's Music Department, where sublime music is being made in a setting that's far from serene. It's budget time at…
Asian Insight: Philippines - The Furthest Cross
The Philippines poses a problem of identity: to be Asian or otherwise. This film shows how the complex social structure of the Spanish and the religious cult of Santo Nino have not been disentangled from the church and the relics…
The Unfair Go!: The Sorry State
The Sorry State, asks why the welfare state failed to work. And asks how the besuited men of the past planned for today. In Britain homelessness has doubled since 1974, but housing alone is not necessarily the answer. Housing may…
Who's Afraid of Designer Babies?
Australia is at the forefront of new genetic technology that will let us "design" our descendants. Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis or PGD allows scientists to screen embryos conceived through IVF. But what is the potential of this technology and who should…
Mabo - Life of an Island Man
Mabo - Life of an Island Man is the story of a small island and an extraordinary man. Eddie Koiki Mabo was born on Murray Island in the Torres Strait, but lived most of his life in exile. Only after…
Abortion, Corruption and Cops: The Bertram Wainer Story
In 1967 a young woman came to Dr Bertram Wainer's Melbourne surgery seeking emergency medical attention after a backyard abortion. She was desperately ill yet too afraid to go to hospital. For Wainer this was the start of a long,…
Slow Food Revolution
Speed - the obsession of the modern world - is determining what people should eat and how. Traditional foods are at risk of disappearing forever. An international eco-gastronomic movement known as Slow Food champions the protection of traditional culture, the…
Darwin's Brave New World
Darwin's Brave New World is the story of how four young voyagers to the Southern Hemisphere - Charles Darwin, Joseph Hooker, Thomas Huxley and Alfred Russel Wallace - revolutionized science and gave birth to an extraordinary theory about the evolution…
3 videos
The Australian Experience: Land of the Long Weekend
Australia--first in the world to institute a 40-hour working week, first to say there was such a thing as a fair and reasonable wage. Conditions like these helped to win Australia its reputation as a "workers' paradise"; the mythical "land…
Who Killed Malcom Smith
At 1.25pm on 29 December 1982, Malcolm Charles Smith, an Aboriginal prisoner in a Sydney gaol, went into a toilet cubicle and locked the door behind him. Half a minute later, a piercing scream came from the cubicle. Officers rushed…
The Australian Experience: Populate or Perish
Europeans declared Australia terra nullius - an empty land. This lie enabled them to take possession of land occupied for thousands of years by Aboriginal people, yet the number of whites in Australia remained small until after the Second World…
Operation Babylift
In April 1975, in the closing days of the Vietnam War, more than 3000 babies were airlifted from Saigon orphanages and delivered into the arms of waiting couples in the US, Canada, Britain, Europe and Australia. It was the largest…