fbpx Biennale Cinema 2019 | Babyteeth
La Biennale di Venezia

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Venezia 76 Competition
Shannon Murphy
Whitefalk Films (Alex White)
Running Time:
Main Cast:
Eliza Scanlen, Toby Wallace, Emily Barclay, Eugene Gilfedder, Essie Davis, Ben Mendelsohn
Rita Kalnejais
Andrew Commis
Steve Evans
Production Designer:
Sherree Philips
Costume Designer:
Amelia Gebler
Amanda Brown
Angus Robertson


When seriously ill teenager Milla Finlay falls in love with smalltime drug dealer Moses, it’s her parents’ worst nightmare. But as Milla’s first brush with love brings her a new lust for life, things get messy and traditional morals go out the window. Milla shows everyone in her orbit—her parents, Moses, a sensitive music teacher, a budding child violinist, and a disarmingly honest pregnant neighbor—how to live like you have nothing to lose. What might have been a disaster for the Finlay family instead leads to letting go and finding grace in the glorious chaos of life. Babyteeth joyously explores how good it is not to be dead and how far we will go for love.

Director’s Statement

My ambition was to find a cinematic language to match the peculiar tone of irreverence and sentiment in Rita Kalnejais’ whip smart script. I was inspired by the challenge of harmonising this duality of humour and pain in every frame of the film. There could be nothing tentative in my approach in order to authentically represent our protagonist Milla, who at 15 is at the precipice of feeling more alive than she’s ever felt, yet abruptly facing her own mortality. The film language involves stylised disruptions through text, music and breaking the fourth wall which allow us to shift and move at Milla’s accelerated pace. She falls in love with Moses, who she sees as an opportunity to push boundaries in an extreme way. As we dig deeper into Milla’s parents lives we uncover the dysfunction and complicated tensions that exist as this family face their worst nightmare. They are stripped back to their rawest forms. I hope audiences have a visceral experience watching Babyteeth, one they feel deep in their bones that allows them to ache for and celebrate their own relationships.


PRODUCTION: Alex White - Whitefalk Films
PO Box 527 Marrickville NSW Australia 1475
Tel. + 61417436349

WORLD SALES: Mickie Charlotte - Celluloid Dreams
2, rue Turgot
75009 – Paris, France
Tel. + 33 1 49 70 03 70

PRESS OFFICE: Gordon Spragg, Laurin Dietrich, Michael Arnon - WOLF Consultants
Tel. +49 157 7474 9724

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Biennale Cinema
Biennale Cinema