NZIFF Booklet

Films by Must See

Staff Picks: Kate McArthur

I feel extremely grateful to the filmmakers and NZIFF programmers who selected a strong selection of films which tell the stories, so beautifully, of people whose voices need to be heard.

Dreamcatcher

Kim Longinotto

Filmmaker Kim Longinotto accompanies the irrepressible ex-hooker Brenda Myers-Powell as she storms the streets, prisons and high schools of Chicago to inspire young women caught in the cycle of abuse with the story of her escape.

Mustang

Deniz Gamze Ergüven

“Five young sisters in a small coastal Turkish town come of age against a backdrop of sun, secrets, and socially-mandated sexual suppression in [this] heartfelt, beautifully performed debut feature.” — Jessica Kiang, The Playlist

The 50 Year Argument

Martin Scorsese, David Tedeschi

Martin Scorsese and David Tedeschi’s doco celebrates 50 years of cultural and political debate in the pages of The New York Review of Books with octogenarian editor Robert Silvers, its tireless champion of intellectual freedom.

Some Kind of Love

Thomas Burstyn

Acclaimed London artist and designer Yolanda Sonnabend is obliged to share the grand family home she’s made so flamboyantly her own with her scientist brother in this new doco from This Way of Life director Thomas Burstyn.

City of Gold

Laura Gabbert

This affectionate portrait of Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold is also a love letter to the culinary and cultural wonders of Los Angeles, from Beverly Hills fine dining to strip mall noodle joints and taco carts.

Tell Spring Not to Come This Year

Saeed Taji Farouky, Michael McEvoy

Winner of the Panorama Audience Award in Berlin, Tell Spring Not to Come This Year takes us into the dark heart of the forgotten ‘War on Terror’ as Afghani forces struggle to fight on after foreign forces have evacuated.

Seymour: An Introduction

Ethan Hawke

Ethan Hawke’s music-laden documentary ushers us into the company of octogenarian former concert pianist and tireless teacher Seymour Bernstein, and invites us to share his humour, vitality and penetrating wisdom.

Iris

Albert Maysles

Veteran documentary maestro Albert Maysles’ Iris is a captivating salute to a proud flag-bearer of the vanishing quality of fashion individuality, the legendary New York clotheshorse and design darling Iris Apfel.

Crossing Rachmaninoff

Rebecca Tansley

A winning portrait of Italian-born Auckland concert pianist Flavio Villani as he returns like the prodigal son to Italy for his concert debut, scaling one of the summits of the Romantic repertoire.

Democrats

Camilla Nielsson

“The quasi-Kafkaesque administration holding Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe’s corrupt dictatorship in place finally gets the first-hand scrutiny it merits in Camilla Nielsson’s riveting documentary.” — Guy Lodge, Variety

The Chinese Mayor

Zhou Hao

With remarkable access, Chinese documentary filmmaker Zhou Hao shadows the mayor of the most polluted city in China and his problematic plan to rehabilitate its image, relocating half a million people to create a historic heritage park.

The Price of Peace

Kim Webby

Kim Webby’s background in investigative journalism is put to riveting use in this documentary about Tame Iti and the Urewera Four, taking a criminal case of national interest to explore a greater social issue.