The most riveting real-life television series of them all began 42 years ago with the documentary 7 Up, about the expectations of a group of seven-year-old British children. Meet them again, at 49.
- Bahasa Indonesian
- English Intertitles
- Te reo Māori
- other Australian Aboriginal languages
As widower father moves out of the family house, filmmaker son unpacks the secrets of his parents’ 55-year marriage. One of the year’s most involving and moving investigative documentaries.
In an impressive cinematic operation, Yoav Shamir (Checkpoint) records the Israeli army’s eviction of Jewish settlers from their homes on the Gaza Strip.
A documentary for everyone who hates reality television – two struggling sitcom writers sell their souls to pitch a show in which contestants may have to eat each other.
Riveting documentary follows sarcastic, anarchistic rebels on a sonic assault from Los Angeles to NYC for the birth of Straight Edge – the early 80s American answer to punk rock.
The myth of Tibet as a peaceable kingdom is shaken by this documentary portrait of Gendun Choephel (1903-1951) an angry, sensualist monk who riled the Tibetan government.
Ans Westra, whose photographs of New Zealanders constitute a uniquely expressive record of who we are and have been, contemplates her career with amusement and gratitude.
John Hughes’ fascinating documentary about dissent in Cold War era Australia offers a timely commentary on the challenges facing oppositional voices in dark times.
Nekam achat mishtey eynay
Israeli director’s inflammatory documentary critique of his own nation’s continuing reverence for suicidal Zealots in the face of rising terrorism. “Explosively provocative.” — Screendaily
We revisit British director Mike Newell’s 1982 dramatisation of the 12-day manhunt for mass-murderer Stanley Graham on New Zealand's remote West Coast.
This fascinating “making of” the wonderful Ten Canoes, is quite unlike any other you’ve seen as balanda filmmaker Rolf de Heer learns the traditions of aboriginal storytelling on the job.
Rich, lovely history of the rival ballet companies, originally founded in Paris in 1909, whose troupes toured the world in costumes by Dali, Picasso and Matisse.
Filmmakers survey Beijings’s surprising underground punk rock scene in a celebration of gutter trash wannabes, throat-singing rockers and all-girl expletive-ridden riff magnets.
Eye-opening documentary explores the world coffee trade – from the glitzy World Barista Champs to the Ethiopian farmers who grow the world’s finest coffee but live in near starvation.
Documentary inspired by the experience of artist Hugues de Montalembert, who was blinded by muggers in 1978. “A film about blindness that makes us see the world hungrily, deeply, anew.” — Daily Telegraph
Visceral documentary traces the radicalising effect of the US occupation on one Shi-ite family. “A revealing insight into the war in Iraq from the locals' point of view.” — Variety
Joseph Gordon-Levitt channels Bogart to investigate the disappearance of his ex-girlfriend in this inspired fusion of teenage confidential and film noir set in a Southern California high school.
Steven Soderbergh shoots gripping true crime on high-def video in a small town near the Ohio-West Virginia border, proving he is one of America’s most restless and inventive filmmakers.
Life in a Chinese garment factory through the eyes of one of its 14-year-old workers. "A must-see film for anyone interested in global politics, economics, and the socio-cultural issues of contemporary China." — Globe and Mail
Michel Gondry directs comedian Dave Chapelle’s joyous celebration of all that is affirmative, soulful and triumphant in black music now. Don’t miss the party of the year on the giant screen.
Sinking of the Rainbow Warrior is commemorated 20 years on at Matauri Bay and filmed by director Claudia Pond Eyley who traces the history of the ship and its campaigners.
Artworld superstar Matthew Barney, creator of the Cremaster series, joins forces with wife Björk to dumbfound the rest of us with this spectacular epic of bizarre courtship rituals and even weirder consummation.
Norwegian director of Kitchen Stories gives a lovely doleful glow to beat poet Charles Bukowski’s autobiographical account of his early life as a low-life slob. Starring Matt Dillon.
A 14-year-old boy adjusts to the horrors of life in a Nazi death camp. “The eerie beauty of Lajos Koltai’s child’s-eye view of the Holocaust as it sank its teeth into Hungary in 1944 is profound." — The Times
Delicious, serio-comic tale of four friends in affluent, liberal, west LA takes on an avoided subject: money. Stars Jennifer Aniston as a pot-smoking housecleaner.
The most brutal, disturbing and clever thriller of the Internet age sees a feisty 14-year-old girl turn the tables on the 32-year-old fashion photographer she met online.
Vers le sud
Laurent Cantet (Time Out, Human Resources) sets his third film in a beach resort in late 70s Haiti, where middle-aged North American women go to be sexually pampered by young black men.
Documentary follows hoop dreams of Seattle schoolgirl team. "A smartly paced chronicle that nails the socialization of girls, the costs of playing ball, and the perils of female adolescence." — San Francisco Bay Guardian
Public school prat Nick Broomfield attempts to catch up with Eugene Terre’Blanche, leader of the South African neo-Nazi party and subject of his earlier documentary.
This Cannes hit from Korea is a full-bodied horror show that's both scary and hilarious.
Documentary filmmaker Caveh Zahedi’s itch for anonymous, commitment-free sex is fatally paired with a need to confess his peccadilloes – ideally to a totally committed girlfriend.
A young Indian doctor immigrates to England in 1965, leaving behind his distraught family. Forty years later, his daughter tells their moving story, using period Super-8 footage.
Korean American So Yong Kim explores the ghost world of teenage alienation with watchful, intelligent minimalism. Judged Best Film in the Sundance dramatic competition.
In a landmark year for hard-hitting activist cinema, Al Gore’s straightforward and devastating film on global warming stands out as exceptionally well-honed and persuasive.
Ray Lawrence’s follow-up to Lantana is a powerful psychological drama that envelops four men and their families after they discover a murdered woman’s body on a fishing trip.
Globalization gets a human face and an eerie spiritual dimension in this artful documentary about the lives of young Indian workers in a Mumbai call centre.
The rise and fall of the Peoples Temple movement, whose charismatic founder convinced hundreds of his followers in Jonestown, Guyana to participate in a mass ‘suicide’ on November 18, 1978.
The beauty of San Francisco imbues every frame of Jenni Olson’s compelling hybrid of city symphony, personal lament and political activism against suicide.
A man searches for his lost daughter, imprisoned by his own guilt and shame. Haunting, expressionistic psychodrama from the director of Clean, Shaven.
Kirikou et la sorcière
Michel Ocelot's splendid animated feature from 1998 tells a sensual, guilt-free fairy tale – a West African fable about the power of original innocence.
Provocative documentary explores the legacy of Nazi death camp Mauthausen in Austria, which now functions as a major contributor to the local tourist economy.
The theme of Paradise Lost gets a local twist in this documentary about foreign ownership of New Zealand land and infrastructure by filmmakers Abi King-Jones and Errol Wright.
Incisive Swedish documentary explores the worldwide practice of granting prisoners on death row the right to choose a final meal, hours before execution.
Australia’s tautest, most cunningly scripted psychological thriller since The Interview unfolds over the course of one hot summer night on the midnight train to Freemantle, Perth.
Five real life dramas from the pediatric oncology centre at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital testify to the resources of science, moral imagination and compassion dedicated to the care of children with cancer.
Failed writer Jim (Casey Affleck) heads home for a nervous breakdown, where kind-hearted nurse (Liv Tyler) takes a shine to him. Steve Buscemi directs this deadpan comedy with downbeat charm.
Boston band The Pixies reunite for a world tour, 12 years after their acrimonious split. “Onstage … they sound as good – if not tighter, leaner and actually better – than ever.” — salon.com
Abel Ferrara (Bad Lieutenant) takes on Mel Gibson style showbiz religiosity, starring Matthew Modine as a man who directs a movie in which he plays Christ, with Juliette Binoche as Mary Magdalene.
The most baffling film in the Festival (Drawing Restraint 9) is elucidated in this admiring career portrait of artist/filmmaker Matthew Barney.
James Scurlock’s alarmist exploration of the vastness of the debt that underlies the American economy, is as visceral as it is illuminating.
Allan King’s insightful, utterly compassionate film about Alzheimer’s, aging and memory loss was shot over four months at a Jewish geriatric care facility in Toronto.
Exactly what it says on the label: a bighearted tour of Metal, heavy and otherwise, from fans, critics and legendary performers. "The soundtrack, as might be expected, kicks ass." — Variety
El Método, aka The Grönholm Method
Seven executives compete in a boardroom until the last suit standing gets the job in this suavely savage corporate thriller that makes Neil La Bute seem sentimental.
Geoff Burton’s graceful documentary examines the treatment of a student’s life-threatening brain disease shortly upon arriving in Australia, and the quiet stoicism of his wife, a devout young Bangladeshi woman.
Joan Plowright is the 70-something widow who befriends an aspiring young writer in this refreshing look at a friendship that transcends age to focus on kindness and wisdom.
Perceptive comedy around an incipient ménage-a-trois set on the fringes of the indie-pop world in hipster Brooklyn. “Nails the walk and talk of twentysomething iPeople like nothing else.”— Slate
In the great Terrence Malick’s (Badlands, The Thin Red Line) new film, the romance of Pocahontas and Captain John Smith (Colin Farrell) becomes a breathtaking ode to Eden before the fall. Ravishing.
The great Barry Barclay’s landmark feature film centred on a Māori community in the 1940s.
A loving and bittersweet tribute to the asphalt desperadoes of Aotearoa in the 70s who took skateboarding from a fun pursuit into a full blown national phenomenon.
A Crude Awakening
In this well-constructed barrage of terrifying information and images, energy experts and oil industry authorities detail just how close we are to imminent global oil collapse.
The Extraordinary Story of the New York Cosmos
The rise and fall of the short-lived North American Soccer League gets juiced-up E!-style coverage in this often hilarious account of 70s excess.
Unser Täglich Brot
This visually startling window on the world of industrial food production in Europe is an ambiguous ode to the staggering efficiency of modern harvesting – as well as a substantiation of Western gluttony.
Restored version of Antonioni’s brilliant hybrid of Hollywood thriller and existential mystery. The hippest film of 1975 was inexplicably withheld from circulation until now by its owner and star Jack Nicholson.
We present Merata Mita's incendiary documentary on the 1981 Springbok tour protests – a landmark in New Zealand film history.
An immigrant cop from Senegal patrols a David Lynch-like Seattle on a bicycle. Strange and hauntingly memorable. “A deceptively quiet, and completely genuine thing of beauty." — Film Comment
True story of the British Muslim boys who went to Pakistan for a wedding in September 2001 and ended up as tortured prisoners of the US Army. “Ferocious, partisan, and moving.” — The Guardian
With more nerd chic than Napoleon Dynamite, this tale of three geeks who dig laser tag and medieval swordfighting is hilariously off-kilter and chock-full of wholesome fun.
Richard Linklater’s much anticipated adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s nightmarish 1977 novel has an all-star rotoscoped cast: Keanu Reeves, Robert Downey Jr. and Winona Ryder. Direct from Cannes.
Canadian filmmaker Velcrow Ripper takes us on an engaging personalised tour of the planet's dark side in search of hope, reconciliation and rebirth in the wake of catastrophe.
La science des rêves
Michel Gondry’s follow up to Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is super-kinetic lark starting Gael Garcia Bernal as a shy guy whose dream world overlaps with reality.
John Cameron Mitchell’s Cannes sensation is a joyous and expressive tragicomedy of sex and sexuality in New York City.
Hollywood director Sydney Pollack provides an engaging personal introduction to one of the most popular architects of our time, his close friend 77-year-old Frank Gehry.
Sandor Lau’s energetic documentary portrait of South-Auckland car-windscreen cleaner Starfish, who pounces with the speed and grace of a tiger.
A kiwi cultural institution for as long as the Film Festival, Rick Bryant and the Windy City Strugglers finally get their close-up in Costa Botes’ funny, affectionate musical documentary.
Covet not the senior tribesman’s wife. Most perfectly realised of the many films Dutch expat Rolf de Heer has made in Australia, this time with Aboriginal story-tellers in the Northern Territory. Special Jury Prize Cannes.
Aaron Eckhart was born to play the fast-talking Washington lobbyist and public affairs frontman for Big Tobacco in this gleefully cynical satire on the black art of spin-doctoring.
Kirby Dick’s gleeful assault exposes the hypocrisy, inscrutability, cronyism and downright wackiness of the all-powerful unregulated, United States film censorship board, the MPAA.
Tommy Lee Jones’ remarkable directorial debut (in which he also stars) dismantles the racism endemic in the western revenge drama genre. Written by Mexican Guillermo Arriaga (Amores Perros, 21 Grams).
Thought-provoking documentary on the tiny Pacific nation of Tuvalu, threatened with possible extinction by the twin oppressions of global warming and economic globalisation.
Steve Coogan stars in Michael Winterbottom’s po-mo adaptation of Sterne’s bawdy, untamable, 18th-century novel. “The first great, mind-tickling treat of the new movie year” — Entertainment Weekly
Deeply moving and hilarious tale switches from achingly funny to achingly sad in the twitch of a child’s finger. Could well be this precocious generation’s Stand by Me.
British director Paul Greengrass’ (Bloody Sunday) harrowing reenactment, in real time, of what might have happened on the one airplane that didn't fulfill the terrorists' intended goals on Sept. 11, 2001.
Actor Richard E Grant’s touching and funny movie-memoir of his 60s adolescence amongst the British diplomatic community in Swaziland in Southern Africa. With Gabriel Byrne, Emily Watson.
This good humoured, deeply fanciful mock documentary about a land claim has a distinctively Cantabrian flavour.
The Diaries of Chinese International Students in New Zealand
Absorbing documentary about four Chinese students at New Zealand high school provides a rich and finely nuanced portrayal of cultural displacement.
Die Weiße Massai
The amazingly true romantic adventure of a Swiss woman who marries a Massai warrior and lives with him in his mud hut in the Kenyan bush.
Fashioned as a tongue-in-cheek murder mystery, this disarmingly entertaining documentary looks at the optimistic rise and swift demise of the electric car in 1990s California.
A 13-year-old home-schooled genius falls in love, or thinks he does, with his gifted – and closeted – English teacher. “Consistently surprising ... a coming-of-age film that could become a Canadian classic.” — Now
Werner Herzog fashions a sci-fi fantasy of paradise lost around actor Brad Dourif, recutting amazing NASA footage and gorgeous submarine imagery. An unclassifiable oddity.
British social realist Ken Loach picked up the Cannes Palme d’Or for this provocative drama set in County Cork between 1920 and 1922, a dangerous period before the outbreak of civil war in Ireland. “Staggeringly powerful… The Wind That Shakes the Barley had more to say about the world of today than any other film screening in Cannes.” — Scott Foundas, LA Weekly
The world’s most horrible, life-endangering jobs are the subject of Austrian Michael Glawogger’s superbly cinematic, confrontingly aestheticised documentary.
Funny, heartbreaking documentary charts the tragic tale of Roky Erickson, charming lead singer of the legendary 13th Floor Elevators, who stared into the cosmos and never came back.