Editorial Scene: Tropscore 2015 – Not Remotely Funny

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Tropfest is an annual Australian short film contest, the largest short film contest in the world.  It’s been going for over 23 years. They have also added an offshoot competition, called Tropscore, for composers to score a short film provided by the festival. This is a great idea and a fun way to get people involved.

From the Tropscore website:
The object of Tropscore 2015 is simple – produce a musical score or synch for a short film clip provided by Tropfest. The winning artist or band get the chance to perform their score live on stage at Tropfest Australia, which will be held at Centennial Parklands in Sydney, along with other major cities around Australia, on 6th December, 2015.

The film for Tropscore 2015 is “Remote“, directed by Michael Noonan.

Clips are often lighthearted and fun. This year’s clip, however, is so far off the mark that it’s astounded some entrants.

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Jennifer Kingwell, Melbourne musician and composer, outlined further on her blog:

This afternoon while researching performing/composing opportunities I came across this year’s Tropscore competition – an offshoot of the world’s largest short film festival, Tropfest, Tropscore offers a chance for up-and-coming film composers to score a preselected short film. This year, the film is called ‘Remote’, (written and directed by Miguel Nooñan), and like many short films, it comes with a twist and a double entendre – the everyman protagonist, Carlos, driving his ute through the remote (see?) Mexican desert is doing so to dig up his buried alive wife to rip the gaffa tape off her mouth and ask her where the remote (geddit?) is. Woman-in-refrigerator/buried-alive-wife (in the credits she doesn’t even get a name. She’s just ‘Wife of Carlos’) just blinks incredulously. Cut to Carlos driving away in his ute, yelling ‘Bitch’! And scene.

This kind of casual misogyny contributes to a culture of minimisation, trivialisation and acceptance of domestic violence. It makes a punchline out of the fact that 22% of Australians think that domestic violence can be excused if people get so angry they lose control.

This should NEVER be acceptable but particularly in a year when 63 WOMEN have already been killed violently in Australia (mostly at the hands of their current or former partner) this is just fucking outrageous. I am LIVID.”

Rather than call for a boycott or the film to be withdrawn, Jen and fellow musician, Helen Perris, have come together to encourage people to enter scores that condemn domestic violence.

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This is a clever and smart way to highlight a problem that even these days seems to be ignored by many people.

You can find more info about this through the hastag #notremotelyfunny.  Consider creating your own entry.

Image courtesy Jennifer Kingwell
Image courtesy Jennifer Kingwell

UPDATE 25/9 1.30pm

Jennifer Kingwell: So I just got off the phone from the managing director of Tropfest. They’re pulling the film and replacing it with something else. I reiterated that the‪#‎notremotelyfunny‬ campaign was not about censorship but was instead a creative call to action to respond to the abhorrent message of the chosen film.

They’re making a corporate decision to pull it. They haven’t yet thought about ways in which they could ensure that this doesn’t happen again and I’m not sure that they fully understand that it’s more then just being about domestic violence as a ‘hot topic’ issue in 2015 – he kept going on about ‘the current climate’. Oh also we should also go easy on the director you guyz, he’s ‘pretty bruised’. So I should ‘be nice’.

About Mandy Hall 668 Articles
Mandy is a music photographer & writer. She runs Mandy Hall Media, which includes Social Media marketing, PR & Graphic Design for the music industry. She is also a web developer - she created and supports this website.

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