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The films of Bill Mousoulis

Between Us
(1989, 37 mins, 16mm, color, sound on film)

DOP: Mark Lane; Sound: Phillip Healy; 
Edited by: Catherine Birmingham.

Music: Widdershins and These Future Kings.

Featuring: Phillip Dean, Sharon Rider, Juliet Ward,  James Cruickshank, Alex Robertson.

Genre: narrative drama

Available on DVD for purchase as part of

The Films of Bill Mousoulis
Vol 5 1989

or on its own - Between Us


Synopsis: The story of Rick, a washing-machine serviceman, and his relationships with two very different women.

Screenings: 17, including: "Blown Up", Sydney, Mar 1990; St.Kilda Film Festival, May 1990; Dendy Awards, Sydney Film Festival, June 1990; Melbourne International Film Festival, June 1990; Frames Film and Video Festival, Adelaide, Sep 1990; Jump Cut Film Festival, Perth, Oct 1990; Greek Film Festival, Melbourne, Apr 1993; Buenos Aires Festival of Independent Cinema, May 2003.

- Funded by Australian Film Commission ($66,686).

"Between Us is a simple, unpretentious film about relationships, motivation, and self-esteem. What impressed me most about it was how such an un-dramatic film moved me to feel for its characters. There are very few moments of passion in this film. The characters are not complicated. The images are not sophisticated. The conflicts are not deep. Yet the final result is satisfying...... This film is, I believe, a masterly narrative, constructed with an enviable economy of style that always pleases and surprises."
                                                     - Raffi Ghazarian, Super Eight, Feb 1990.

"Without a doubt, Bill Mousoulis is the most controversial and prolific film-maker in the Melbourne underground film scene. His new film, Between Us, maintains the innocence and simplicity of his earlier excursions into naturalism with the slicker production values that come with a little money and experience."
                                                     - program notes, "Blown Up", March 1990.

"The story moves swiftly, and, for anyone who grew up in an Australian suburb in the last fifteen years, it is a painfully familiar tale as the hero battles the comfortable inertia of suburban life against his desire to construct a personality. The film won me over with its steadfast grace and dignified tone."
                                                     - Michael Hutak, Filmnews, March 1990.

"What has always disturbed me about Bill Mousoulis' work is his presentation of himself as auteur. Behind every character and every longheld take lies Bill's self-congratulation on his ever so perceptive displays of humanity's search for meaning. I may be a voice in the wilderness but this search for meaning to me merely obfuscates a more fundamental issue: how to live in a world where the idea of meaning is in crisis? Mousoulis' publicity blurb is very fond of quoting Adrian Martin: 'Can there be any doubt that Bill Mousoulis is a visionary?' Well, yes, there can be."
                                                     - Michael Hutak, Filmnews, June 1990.

"By focusing on ordinary characters, everyday events and almost embarassingly naturalistic dialogue, the film suggests the sadness, triumph and mystery of people's lives, stamped with Mousoulis' own sensitive and stylish signature."   
                                                     - Peter Kemp, MIFF notes, June 1990.

"I think that Between Us is Bill's best film. I think it is a great film. There is no question about that."
                                                    - Nick Ostrovskis, Super Eight, July 1990.

"Mousoulis has developed his unobtrusive style into something powerful."
                                                   - catalogue notes, Frames festival, Sep 1990.

"‘I think she’s affected me somehow’: this offhand line in Between Us could stand as a motto for the cinema of Bill Mousoulis, a tireless independent whose career since the early 1980s spans six self-funded features (shot on Super 8, 16mm and digital video) and a hundred shorts. Mousoulis’ characters essentially dwell in their solitude; the random, spontaneous encounters they experience in daily life certainly touch and change them, but in small, indirect, sometimes barely visible ways. Mousoulis’ minimalist, unadorned, style is a homage to the spiritualists Bresson and Rossellini, but in tone it is closer to the secular, suburban mosaics of Taiwan’s Tsai Ming-liang, Iran’s Sohrab Shahid Saless, Kazakhstan‘s Darezhan Omirbaev or Greece’s Dimitris Athanitis. Between Us is about potential relationships, virtual connections, intersecting lives, nagging dilemmas of wish and denial. Its emotion creeps in subtly, especially through the use of live musical performances by local bands Widdershins and These Future Kings."
                                                    - Gio Abate, catalogue notes, Buenos Aires Festival of Independent Cinema, 2003.

- one of Top 5 Films of 1990, Tina Kaufman, Filmnews, Dec 1990.

- 4th Best Film, St.Kilda Film Festival, May 1990.

- Nomination Best Short Fiction Film, Dendy Awards, Sydney Film Festival, June 1990.

- Available through Australian Centre for the Moving Image Lending Collection.

- See also Roger Griffin's Widdershins page.