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Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art
Production still from Labyrinth 1986 / Director: Jim Henson / Image courtesy: Amalgamated Movies
16 December 2013
A free film program embracing the whimsy and darkness in both traditional and contemporary takes on folk stories will screen at the Gallery of Modern Art's Australian Cinémathèque from January 10 to March 30, 2014.

Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA) Director Chris Saines said 'Fairytales and Fables' would reveal the cinematic allure of these traditional tales, and their continued ability to enchant and unnerve.

'Encompassing films suitable for the young and young at heart, and a selection of more provocative titles for adults only, the program will show how these stories have evolved, modernised and exerted their influence on other genres in European and North American filmmaking,' Mr Saines said.

The program opens on Friday January 10 with a special event blending the exquisite 1001 Nights-inspired shadow puppet animation The Adventures of Prince Achmed 1926, with live accompaniment by sacred vocal and instrumental music duo Oscar and Marigold (Kim Cunio and Heather Lee). It is followed by a screening of Rob Reiner's much-loved fantastic comedy The Princess Bride 1987.

The Audi GOMA Bar is open from 5.30pm on January 10 and every Friday night throughout the program for drinks and light snacks.

From the early 20th century silent experiments of Georges Méliès and animated fables by Lotte Reiniger, the program continues to fantastical contemporary stories by Tim Burton (Edward Scissorhands 1990), Terry Gilliam (The Adventures of Baron Munchausen 1988) and Guillermo del Toro (Pan's Labyrinth 2006).

Mr Saines said the films in the program ranged in tone from light-hearted to disturbing, and included reinterpretations of classic tales, as well as original stories that combine elements of fairytale and fable with parody, experimental film and horror.

''Fairytales and Fables' offers an opportunity to revisit some of the genre's most popular titles, such as Wolfgang Petersen's The Neverending Story 1984 and Jim Henson's Labyrinth 1986, and to discover other films that reinvigorate these genres on the big screen,' he said.

More recent titles include Pablo Berger's acclaimed contemporary silent take on Snow White, Blancanieves 2012, and Wes Anderson's quirky adaptation of Fantastic Mr Fox 2009

As part of the Gallery's New Wave Teens program, a free screening of Spike Jonze' Where the Wild Things Are 2009 exclusively for teenagers will be held on Saturday January 18 from 1.30pm. Bookings can be made via

On Saturday February 22 at 1.00pm, program curator Amanda Slack-Smith, Curatorial Assistant, Australian Cinémathèque, will give a talk exploring the oral and literary roots of the darker side of the cinematic fairytale.

For screening times and film notes visit
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Opening Hours
Open daily 10.00am – 5.00pm
(The Gallery has late opening hours when evening
Australian Cinémathèque screenings are scheduled.)