We acknowledge Australia’s First Nations People as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the land, and pay respect to the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, upon whose Country SFF are based.
We honour the storytelling and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia.

Araatika: Rise Up!

Directed by Larissa Behrendt
82 minutes
MA 15+
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First Nations filmmaker Larissa Behrendt (After the Apology) follows a group of NRL stars as they create a pre-game performance to meet the famous haka.
For over a decade, NRL players including Dean Widders, Preston Campbell, Timana Tahu and George Rose have been leading the movement for a First Nations Australian equivalent to the haka. Widders faced discrimination throughout his career and for him the ceremony is a way of celebrating Indigenous Australia's contribution to the game. In 2012, dancer and choreographer Sean Choolburra came on board to help. Working with NRL players, he came up with a series of movements that reflected cultural symbols. The goal was to perform the symbolic dance at the 2020 New Zealand-Australia Test but COVID-19 halted their plans. Behrendt's rousing documentary, also featuring the Bangarra Dance Company, Stan Grant, Adam Goodes, Michael O'Loughlin and many more, traces the game's troubled relationship to its Indigenous stars, to its previous failed attempts at a pre-game ceremony and to a triumphant performance on-stage at Sydney Festival.

Screens with Finding Jedda.

Stream Meet the Filmmaker: Araatika: Rise Up! during the Festival here.

Films showing at this event:

Finding Jedda
Sat 6 November 2:00pm, Sun 7 November 1:30pm
At St Mary's Anglican Home, Alice Springs, in 1953, two best friends go head-to-head auditioning for the lead role in a movie, and face the prospect of leaving the Home for good.


Sat 6 Nov
Event Cinemas George St 5
Book Tickets Cancel
Sun 7 Nov
Event Cinemas VMAX2
Book Tickets Cancel
SFF On Demand
Available Fri 12 Nov
On Demand Online
Sponsored By
Program Strand
First Nations, On Demand
MA 15+
In English
Larissa Behrendt
Sam Griffin
Larissa Behrendt
Anna Howard, Justine Kerrigan
Andrea Lang
Documentary, First Nations, Sport, Australian Films, Human Rights, Politics & Economics, Women Directors
Company Credits
Australian Distributor: Madman Entertainment
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