Melbourne International Film Festival. First up was the coming-of-age drama The Diary Of A Teenage Girl, based on Phoebe Gloeckner's graphic novel of the same name. Set in San Francisco in 1976, it focuses on 15-year-old Minnie Goetze (Bel Powley), a high school student and aspiring artist. At the start of the film she loses her virginity to her mother Charlotte's (Kristen Wiig) boyfriend Monroe (Alexander Skarsgard). Minnie continues to have an affair with Monroe and also gets involved with other people through her sexual awakening. The film is an honest portrayal of teenage sexuality and refreshingly done in a non-judgemental way. Bel Powley is fantastic as Minnie and I also liked the animated touches throughout the film.
808, about the Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer machine. Only 12,000 of them were produced by Roland in Japan over a 3 year period from 1980. However, the machine has had a long lasting impact on music, spawning the back beats and rhythms of many different songs from hip-hop, rap, R&B, pop and various forms of electronic and dance music. This documentary shows how various artists have utilised the 808 machine over the years and found different ways to program and expand the types of sounds you can get from it. It's amazing how much influence this one machine has had on music throughout the world.