Author(s): Anna Broinowski
In 1996, Pauline Hanson gave a speech that changed Australia. Attacking Asian and Indigenous people and foreign aid, Hanson unleashed a Pandora's box of violence and division on the progressive country Prime Minister Keating had positioned as 'part of Asia'. After her famous defeat in 1998, her political downfall seemed assured - but she stayed firmly in the spotlight, whether she was being locked up for electoral fraud or jiving on Dancing with the Stars. Now, after almost two decades in the political wilderness, Hanson is back and more powerful than ever. Before One Nation's astonishingly successful return to Australian politics in 2016, multi-award-winning filmmaker Anna Broinowski had complete access to Hanson and her 'Fed Up' election campaign. Broinowski followed Hanson as she flew from Rockhampton to Sydney to Great Keppel Island and beyond in her Jabiru two-seater. The crazies, the madness, the division and the hatred Hanson attracts and inflames were all on show - sometimes funny, sometimes frightening, and often surreal. At the time, no one was taking Pauline Hanson and One Nation's political chances seriously, but Broinowski quickly realised that there was a movement forming behind her. Pauline Hanson's explosive political journey mirrors Australia's own- from left-leaning multiculturalism, to the divided landscape we live in now. And, alongside the shocks of Brexit and Trump's presidency, Hanson's resurrection reflects a broader global trend towards outrageous far-right outsiders. Please Explain is a compelling, intimate look at how an Ipswich fish and chip shop lady changed our nation - and how (whether we like it or not) she speaks directly to Australian society and our multicultural identity today.
Anna Broinowski fell into filmmaking by accident - when she and her brother uncovered Japan's queer, Yakuza and Otaku subcultures in the cult hit Hell Bento!! She's directed ever since. Her latest documentary, Aim High in Creation!, sold to Netflix and cornered a niche market- the DIY North Korean propaganda film workshop. Other films are Forbidden Lie$, Helen's War, Romancing the Chakra and Sexing the Label. They've won stuff, including three AFIs, the Rome Film Festival 'Cult' Prize, a Walkley, the Al Jazeera Golden Award, a Russian Film Critics prize, the NSW Premier's Literary Award and the Writer's Guild of America Best Nonfiction Screenplay. Before filmmaking, Anna was an actor and rock violinist. She toured her bilingual play The Gap to Tokyo, failed law and wrote for many arty 1990s magazines. Born in Japan and raised in the Philippines, Burma, Canberra and Iran, Anna now lives in Sydney with her eleven-year-old daughter, a wise Glaswegian and a three-legged cat called Tripod.