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Man of Flowers (Paul Cox, 1983) prod. Jane Ballantyne, Paul Cox for Flowers International, wr. Paul Cox, Bob Ellis, dp Yuri Sokol, design Asher Bilu, ed. Tim Lewis; Norman Kaye (AFI Best Actor), Alyson Best, Chris Haywood, Sarah Walker, Julia Blake, Bob Ellis, Barry Dickins, Patrick Cook, Victoria Eagger, Werner Herzog; Fuji colour, 35mm, 91 min.
This is the best of the Australian 'art' films, in all the meanings of the term.
Many think Man of Flowers is Cox's best film; it is certainly an extrordinary combination of pain and humour, sex and death, poetry and magic. ... an extrordinary achievement, and shows, once again, just what can be done on a tiny budget when the people involved are both dedicated and talented. ... Outrageous, funny, erotic, sad, 'elegantly kinky' (as film ciritic Molly Haskell described it in Vogue): no wonder Man of Flowers was such a success. Stratton: 124, 126
I felt my life was changing, and all my childhood memories came to the fore, all the suppresion I'd gone through. I was determined to make this film. I wrote the story in two days, gathered people around me—even my lawyer, who's normally very strict, put money into it. I found an office, put up a sign, connected the phone, and said I was in pre-production: but, actually we had no money at all. Paul Cox, as quoted in Stratton: 124.
See also: art films list, chapter on art films in Ten Types of Australian Film.
Research assignment by Maria Racioppo, 2007
Garry Gillard | New: 29 October, 2012 | Now: 2 December, 2019