Film screening calls for Kombis

December 8, 2023 BY

A still from documentary Kombi Man, partially shot along the Great Ocean Road. Photo: INSTAGRAM/CINEMA NOVA

A FILM showcasing an iconic car design on one of the world’s iconic roads is screening in Geelong this week, and local Kombi owners are being urged to roll out in support.

When Paul Mutimer was diagnosed with blood cancer, his dream to buy a Volkswagen Kombi and take a road trip to the 12 Apostles while he was still well enough to do so became a matter of urgency.

Kombis were first produced in 1950, and buying one and bringing it back to roadworthy condition is not easy or cheap, so the Beaumaris resident’s wish became an odyssey, chronicled by film-maker Jeff Bird in documentary Kombi Man, which was released earlier this year.

As well as the film’s ultimate destination of the Great Ocean Road, Kombi Man also features Bellarine Peninsula business Hire a Kombi and co-owner George Gorgievski.

Geelong’s The Pivotonian Cinema hosted the first of three screenings of Kombi Man yesterday (Thursday, December 7) that also included a Q&A with the director and Mr Gorgievski, and will also show the film this Sunday, December 10 at 3pm and Tuesday, December 12 at 6pm.

Hire a Kombi and The Pivotonian Cinema are asking as many of the region’s Kombi owners as possible to bring their vehicles to the 3pm Sunday screening and park them outside the cinema, located at the corner of Moorabool and Verner streets in South Geelong, to help spread the word about the documentary.

In an interview with RACV in 2020, Mr Mutimer said buying the yellow 1973 Kombi was “laughable” and “the most irrational decision I could ever make in my life”.

“You can’t adjust the seat, there’s no power steering, no heating or cooling, but I love it.

“To me, the Kombi is a symbol of optimism, of spirituality and religion. I suppose it represents the hippie part of me that’s stayed alive all these years.”

Kombi Man was an official selection at this year’s Melbourne Documentary Film Festival and was a finalist in three categories: Best Melbourne Documentary, Best Emerging Director and Audience Choice.

It also won plaudits at this year’s The Impact DOCS Awards, Stockholm City Film Festival and WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival.

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