In summary

  • Recent Swinburne Media and Communications student Matt Bolin has won Best Short Documentary at the New York Los Angeles International Film Festival
  • His film, The Philosophy Documentary, features Swinburne teachers and students
  • Philosophy lecturer and course convenor, Dr Glenn McLaren, says the film is very impressive and highlights how philosophy is often overlooked

Recent Swinburne student Matt Bolin has won Best Short Documentary at the New York Los Angeles International Film Festival for his film The Philosophy Documentary.

The 20-minute documentary explores why philosophy is a vital part of society and features many teachers and students at Swinburne.

Matt studied the Bachelor of Media and Communications and philosophy units as part of his degree. He says winning Best Short Documentary is ’pretty amazing’ and that he enjoyed ’creating awareness about an amazing topic among a new audience’.

The film’s concept happened by chance, according to Matt. He was waiting in line at the Atrium Café on Swinburne’s Hawthorn campus when Philosophy Convenor and Lecturer, Dr Glenn McLaren, happened to be waiting in line as well and suggested he make a documentary about him and the lead of Swinburne’s Philosophy department, Associate Professor Arran Gare, after seeing another one of Matt’s films.

’The rest was history after that meeting,’ he says.

Dr McLaren appeared in the documentary and says that it has given people ’a new appreciation' for philosophy.

‘Matt wants to do something positive in the world and is someone not to be underestimated. I’m not only delighted that he has had this success, but that we have contributed to it in this way.’

The Philosophy Documentary

The Philosophy Documentary

Critical thinking

A key theme in The Philosophy Documentary is how the field is often overlooked. Matt believes that in a fast-paced world, many feel they don’t have time to reflect.

’The assumption is that the process of thinking doesn’t weigh up to the process of doing. In reality, you need both of them to feel a sense of balance in your life.’

Swinburne is unique in having holistic process philosophers, which are part of a small but growing field and ’the future of philosophy’, according to Dr McLaren.

‘Process philosophy is a small but growing field in the world and from my perspective, the future of philosophy. Our perspective is unique in bringing together the Arts and Sciences and we provide students with a deep understanding of reality to empower them to effectively confront the immense challenges humanity is facing.’

Matt says it was ‘such an honour to represent Australia on the international stage’ and is currently in the process of making an adult animation.

‘I would like to produce quality films for people to enjoy and provide a sense of happiness through my work to as many people as possible in the way that Film and Television did for me growing up.’

Related articles

    • Film and television

    Round the Twist’s fans grew up – and their love for the show grew with them

    A stage musical adaptation is just the newest addition to the cottage industry which is Round The Twist nostalgia. Analysis for The Conversation Djoymi Baker, RMIT University and Jessica Balanzategui, Joanna McIntyre and Liam Burke Swinburne University of Technology.

    Friday 10 September 2021
    • Film and television
    • Technology
    • Health

    Musicians are urging us to vaccinate: the federal government should learn from these moving, hopeful ads

    Any advertisement asking us to get vaccinated must answer one crucial question: what might I gain by being vaccinated? Analysis for The Conversation by Andrea Fenton, Swinburne University of Technology. 

    Wednesday 08 September 2021
    • Design
    • Student News
    • Film and television
    • Technology
    • University

    The 7 Swinburne exhibits at ACMI in August

    ACMI and Swinburne present thought-provoking digital experiences as part of the next gen_now program from 7–13 August in the Swinburne Studio and Gandel Digital Future Lab.

    Monday 02 August 2021
    • Film and television

    Swinburne researchers shaping the future of Aussie kids TV

    A new four-year research collaboration between Swinburne and the Australian Children’s Television Foundation (ACTF) will help shape the next generation of hit Australian kids’ TV shows.

    Monday 30 August 2021
    • Student News
    • Film and television
    • Technology
    • University

    Animated films bring Indigenous students’ experiences to life at ACMI

    As part of Swinburne’s next gen_now exhibit with the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), Indigenous students share their culture and experiences of living in Melbourne through animated films.  

    Tuesday 03 August 2021