The legend of Nick Cave is explored and amplified in this seductive, music-filled documentary created in collaboration with British filmmaker/artists Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard. “Thrilling to behold.” — Time Out
NZIFF recommends this programme for children aged 7–10 years (and up)
‘Baba-dook-dook-dook’ joins ‘Candyman’ and ‘Bloody Mary’ as words too terrifying to say, but too tempting not to, thanks to Australian writer-director Jennifer Kent’s startling and thought-provoking horror house thriller.
La belle et la bête
A beloved classic of French cinema returns in a stunning digital restoration. Lovely Josette Day and magnificent Jean Marais star in Jean Cocteau’s retelling of the great Gothic romance.
Die geliebten Schwestern
Beautifully acted, exquisitely mounted and fascinatingly evocative of its social setting, Beloved Sisters dramatises the shifting ménage-à-trois of the 18th-century poet Friedrich Schiller and the two sisters who shared his life.
Richard Linklater’s enthralling and moving drama of a boy’s progress from childhood to young manhood is truly unprecedented: it was shot over 12 years, capturing its star and his fellow cast as they themselves grew and changed.
This edge-of-your-seat thriller keeps you off-balance with unexpected consequences when reluctant hero Michael C. Hall kills an intruder in his Texas home. Also starring Sam Shepard and a scene-stealing Don Johnson.
Be the first in the world to acclaim a moving new New Zealand film. Cliff Curtis is superb as the late Genesis Potini, the speed chess champion who passed on his gift to countless East Coast children.
This fascinating and entertaining documentary takes us behind the scenes at the House of Dior as incoming designer Raf Simons conceives his first collection, and Dior’s highly skilled ateliers bring it to life.
This expert adaptation of a hit stage play imagines the negotiation between the German governor tasked by Hitler to destroy Paris and the Swedish counsel credited with persuading him not to.
A 50-something businessman gets more than he bargained for when he invites a young street hustler back to his apartment. Loaded with sexual tension, this superbly directed thriller never goes where you expect.
Isabelle Huppert is touching and funny as a farmer’s wife who takes off to Paris on a whim in this poignant comedy of 50-something upheaval – and romance in unexpected places.
Swedish director Ruben Östlund’s Cannes sensation combines black comedy, social satire and probing psycho-drama as a model family comes apart on a skiing holiday in the French Alps.
Das grosse Museum
This wryly observed, visually sumptuous documentary takes us behind the scenes at Vienna’s Art History Museum while staff prepare an ambitious renovation, reinstallation and rebranding of its palatial Kunstkammer galleries.
Die andere Heimat: Chronik einer Sehnsucht
This supremely cinematic epic of mid-19th century German rural life by Heimat director Edgar Reitz chronicles the quests and conflicts of country families hoping to escape poverty and famine by forging a new life in Brazil.
Welcome home to the Kiwi horror house comedy that took SXSW by storm. Gerard Johnstone’s brilliant genre mash-up stars Rima Te Wiata, Morgana O’Reilly, Glen-Paul Waru and Cameron Rhodes.
Il capitale umano
Two of Italy’s leading actresses, Valeria Golino and Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, star in a stylish whodunit based on Stephen Amidon’s best-selling book of the same name, expertly intertwining love, class and ambition.
Norwegian noir with mordant gallows humour, this bloody tale of snowballing revenge reunites actor Stellan Skarsgård with director Hans Petter Moland ( Zero Kelvin, A Somewhat Gentle Man).
Dans la cour
Two anxious old souls – one of them not so old in years – find friendship in this funny and touching tale of Paris tenement life starring Catherine Deneuve and Gustave Kervern.
This lucid, punchy doco tells the story of Aaron Swartz, the tech genius who eschewed the rewards of Silicon Valley to become a net freedom activist and found himself targeted by the FBI.
Director Michel Gondry (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Mood Indigo) and philosopher-activist Noam Chomsky talk about life and language in a conversation gorgeously illuminated with Gondry’s hand-drawn animations.
The latest from veteran British social realist Ken Loach is a rousing, romantic retelling of the story of Irish folk hero James Gralton and his battle with the Catholic Church to run a popular dance hall and community centre.
Inspired by an urban legend that was itself inspired by the Coen brothers’ Fargo, filmmaking brothers David and Nathan Zellner have crafted a quixotic adventure story as beguiling as it is wondrously strange.
Vintage film noir gloriously restored. Baroque plot complications engulf footloose Irish sailor Orson Welles on a Caribbean cruise with a crooked lawyer and his sultry wife Rita Hayworth (then Mrs Welles).
Two 70-something buddies take a trip to Iceland in this surprisingly funny road movie. If Iceland’s not already on your bucket list, it will be now – possibly even with these two comedians in tow.
Direct from Competition in Cannes, the new film from the Russian director of The Return is an involving, magnificently envisaged and blackly funny tale of one man’s struggle in a densely corrupt world.
Vivir es fácil con los ojos cerrados
Inspired by actual events in 1966, this buoyant and funny road movie about an English-language teacher determined to meet John Lennon won all the major Spanish film awards this year.
John Lithgow and Alfred Molina are magnificent in Ira Sachs’ topical, moving and beautifully tender portrait of an ageing gay couple whose decision to marry after 39 years has complicated consequences.
Classic movie romance beautifully transposed to the rhythms and flavours of modern-day Mumbai. Hearts are kindled when a lunchbox, designed to delight the cook’s husband, is accidentally delivered to a more appreciative stranger.
David Cronenberg’s gleefully toxic satire of Hollywood vanities stars Robert Pattinson, Mia Wasikowska, John Cusack, startling newcomer Evan Bird channelling Justin Beiber; and, in her Cannes-winning role, Julianne Moore.
Nosotros los Nobles
A self-made mogul tricks his three spoiled-rotten kids into believing they are paupers. Mexico’s biggest box-office hit of all time made millions by taking satirical aim at the idle rich.
“This documentary accessibly conveys the science and the human drama behind the largest machine ever built – the Large Hadron Collider – and its crowning achievement, the discovery of the Higgs boson particle.” — Scientific American
Our popular annual engagement with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra showcases the last major film to star the dazzling Louise Brooks. Timothy Brock’s score for this rarely seen jazz-age classic is conducted by Marc Taddei.
NZer Florian Habicht’s acclaimed collaboration with Jarvis Cocker fixes the triumphant 2012 concert billed as Pulp’s last ever within a loving portrait of Sheffield and Sheffielders.
The turbulent love story of American poet Elizabeth Bishop (Miranda Otto) and Brazilian architect Lota de Macedo Soares. “An empowering portrait of two highly gifted women who defy social convention.” – Hollywood Reporter
Le sel de la terre
The life and work of Sebastião Salgado, the undisputed master of monumental photojournalism, is explored in this wonderful doco, jointly directed by his son, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, and German director Wim Wenders.
Sepideh – Drømmen om stjernerne
In a provincial town in Iran, young Sepideh dreams of becoming an astronomer, although almost no one she knows thinks this a fit pursuit for a young woman. Filmed over several years, this doco traces her surprising progress.
Korean auteur Bong Joon-ho’s much anticipated sci-fi epic, his first English language production, finally hits NZ screens in his original director’s cut. Starring Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton and Song Kang-ho.
Actor Eddie Marsan is the steady, purposeful centre of this poignant, slightly stylised drama about a council worker whose job – locating the relatives of the unclaimed dead – is his strongest connection to the living.
Kaguya-hime no monogatari
Hot on the heels of Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises comes another animated masterpiece. Studio Ghibli co-founder Takahata’s rich and astonishing swansong vividly brings an ancient Japanese folktale to life.
NZIFF recommends this programme for children aged 3–6
Deux jours, une nuit
This tense and affecting drama from two-time Palme d’Or winners the Dardenne brothers depicts the weekend-long crusade of a working-class woman to be reinstated in her job. Marion Cotillard is riveting in the central role.
Scarlett Johansson is an alien creature in human guise cruising Glasgow on a mysterious mission to lure young men. Jonathan Glazer’s eerie spellbinder amalgamates chilling fantasy with covertly filmed reality.
Emmanuelle Devos is hypnotic as Violette Leduc, the French writer whose fearless memoirs, championed by Simone de Beauvoir, broke new boundaries for women in literature. From the director of Séraphine.
Vi är bäst!
Swedish director Lukas Moodysson returns to the subversive high spirits of his earlier Show Me Love, adapting his wife’s graphic novel of 80s schoolgirl misfit friendship – and no-talent punkette attitude.
The director of The Bad Lieutenant teams up with the fearless Gerard Dépardieu for the best, most inflammatory film either has made in years, a lurid tale of excess and obsession inspired by the downfall of Dominique Strauss-Kahn.
A surprise Cannes sensation from Argentina, Wild Tales is a compendium of six lavishly produced shorts united by a theme of vengeance – the kind that explodes in spectacular outbursts, sometimes planned, sometimes not!
Jane Campion’s jury awarded the Palme d’Or for Best Film at Cannes this year to this provocative and engrossing study of unwitting male pride and its fallout by Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan.
This intimate portrait of a marvellously idiosyncratic family of beekeepers in the Italian countryside is a classic picture of children growing up in nature – and won its young director the Grand Prix at Cannes.
Comédie Française actor Pierre Niney (It Boy) is sensational in this surprisingly frank ‘authorised’ biopic of the fashion designer who took over from Christian Dior at 21 and eventually established his own enduring brand.