Following the adventures of five idealistic strangers in suburban Melbourne, Stargazers, a micro-budget, fully improvised 5 hour drama, is available for the first time online as a 3 part series. In the film, each actor created and developed their own character, nothing was put on paper and neither the director nor the actors knew what would happen in each scene until it was actually shot. Stargazers was a deliberate attempt to challenge conventional notions of length and pacing in fictional screen narratives and allow the drama and the dialogue to unfold in its own time and with its own rhythm: a story where a talk at the pub or an anecdote in the kitchen are explored for their inherent dramatic richness as much as plot twists or action sequences. A production by Leo Berkeley, with Angela McKenna, David Frazer, Luke Elliot, Caroline Lee, Damien Richardson & Jim Bridges.
It has previously screened as part of the Melbourne Underground Film Festival (see muff.com.au/2005/content/avant.html). It has also been written about by Jake Wilson, current film critic for The Age newspaper and former co-editor of Senses of Cinema, in his review of the year 2003.
'The very best Australian work I saw, however, and one of my personal highlights of the year, was Leo Berkeley's Stargazers, a 5-hour independent "TV series" shot on video with a minimal budget and crew and improvised performances from six wonderful actors. An inspired blend of Rivette-influenced modernism and dry, very Australian humour.'