On the Couch with Gus Berger

Gus-Berger-AAR-On-the-CouchWho is Gus Berger?
I am a documentary filmmaker and have just finished a film called The Lost City of Melbourne. I also run two cinema businesses, an outdoor, mobile cinema called Blow Up Cinema and together with my wife Lou, we also own and operate an indoor single screen cinema in Thornbury called Thornbury Picture House. We also try to manage our two young kids!

What would you do differently from what you do now?
I think I am lucky enough to be in a position where I am doing what I love doing. I would like to have a better life/work balance however but it’s hard when your small business is open 7 days a week. We are working on it!

Who inspires you and why?
I’m constantly inspired by investigative journalists, who have the courage to write about injustices despite fear of repercussions. Freedom of the press and human rights are basic tenets of democracy and we should all be fighting for both, doing what we can, when we can.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
As mentioned above, improving basic human rights is a difference I would love to see in this world. I often feel pretty powerless when it comes to what I think could achieve to improve the situation but through screening films – particularly documentary films, I feel we can at least raise awareness and bring attention to people who are less fortunate than ourselves and who enjoy much less freedoms.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
For me, nothing beats a skiing holiday in the mountains.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I would take them to Thornbury – as not only can they visit our cinema and have a drink but we’re surrounded by beautiful restaurants and bars. I guess you can’t go past a drive and a few days on the Great Ocean Road either. Both options good for the soul!

What are you currently reading?
Nightcrawling by Leila Mottley and I also have a heavily bookmarked copy of Sapiens beside my bed – 4th attempt!

What are you currently listening to?
Right now, we have an Afro-Beat playlist on the go, you just can’t go past that genre.

Happiness is?
Being content with your lot.

What does the future hold for you?
I’m really not sure, but I’m happy with where it seems to be heading. I just hope it comes without too many ‘bangs in the night’!

Gus is the Director & Producer of The Lost City of Melbourne – which will have its world premiere screening at the 2022 Melbourne International Film Festival. The documentary film is also running a crowd-funding campaign to help complete this film.

Image: Gus Berger (supplied)