NZIFF Booklet

Films by Must See

Staff Picks: Hedda ten Holder

After running an art house cinema in Amsterdam, it’s great to be back in the film industry, especially now it’s on the other side of the globe. Wellington is absolutely lovely and I can’t wait for the festival to inundate the city with the best cinema has to offer.

To me, the power of film lies in its ability to teleport you to a setting unknown, ready for you to be explored. The titles on my list invite you into the family life of 1950's Tokyo, the clever mind of philosopher Hannah Arendt and sensual, bull-riding Brazil. Listen to a world without sight, time travel to future Hong Kong, or go back to Central Park in the era that running was still frowned upon, especially when done by women. Happy visual travelling!

Elle

Paul Verhoeven

Genre subversive Paul Verhoeven, director of Basic Instinct and Black Book, teams up with the great Isabelle Huppert to craft this provocative, blackly comic thriller.

Free to Run

Pierre Morath

Rich with clips and lively interviews, this doco traces the running movement over the past 50 years – the struggle for the right to run, especially for women, then the explosion of grassroots road races and marathons.

The Red Turtle

La Tortue rouge

Michael Dudok de Wit

Studio Ghibli’s first international co-production is a ravishing castaway fable that combines beauty, mystery, drama and heartbreak – with not a word spoken. It’s a triumph for animator Michael Dudok de Wit.

Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt

Ada Ushpiz

This new documentary provides insight and historical perspective on the life and work of philosopher Hannah Arendt, illuminating her relevance to some of the most troubling phenomena of our own times.

Our Last Tango

Un tango más

German Kral

In their heyday, Buenos Aires octogenarians María Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes were the Ginger and Fred of tango. In this dance-filled doco they recall their 50-year career and their often stormy personal life.

Neon Bull

Boi neon

Gabriel Mascaro

The most erotically charged film of the year offers a wild, sensual look at life behind the scenes on a backcountry Brazilian rodeo circuit where the reality of human desire sidesteps gender stereotypes every time.

Like Crazy

La pazza gioia

Paolo Virzì

“This high-energy romp is a superb showcase for its two lead actresses as they impetuously extend a group outing from the residential clinic into a two-character outlaw adventure.” — Lisa Nesselson, Screendaily