Three distinct ‘explorers’ – a marine scientist, an improvised sound artist and an underground poet – form the nexus of this unique, visually arresting documentary from New Zealand filmmakers Adam Luxton and Summer Agnew.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2016
Longtime collaborators Adam Luxton and Summer Agnew, creators of the singular Minginui (NZIFF05), return to their experimental roots with this ‘speculative documentary’ on landscapes of ruin, and the three explorers who dive deep into the abyss. Aboard the state-of-the-art research vessel Tangaroa, coral scientist Di Tracey surveys the Chatham Rise seabed to document the impact of deep ocean trawl fishing. Wandering through Christchurch’s eerie post-quake CBD, Bruce Russell, a sound artist and founding member of seminal noise band The Dead C, philosophises on urbanisation and regeneration through improvised soundscapes and his own highly evolved thought patterns. And navigating a fraught interior landscape, poet and actor David Hornblow uses Regression Hypnotherapy to traverse his past experiences with addiction. For Luxton and Agnew, their unique subjects’ journeys into the unknown have galvanised their own approach to the aesthetic of this adventurous film, earthy in tone and form and sublimely realised as a visual poem – its images some of the most striking you’ll encounter at this festival. — Tim Wong