NZIFF Booklet

Films by Must See

Staff Picks: Nick Paris

Visual medication for the tired mind merges all my senses when I think about it, be it a rappers paean to social precepts or a wink to the delightful ink that imbues every frame of Kaurismäki's canvas. The taste of Russia comes with a slew of bitter and sour chemistry in the much anticipated Loveless, his Leviathan came up from the deep to somewhat bother me for days of winter nights after. Never defeated by all this talk of cinema's demise, each year I'm born again to unravel what gifts the directors of today serve up – step inside and get on the carousel...

Loveless

Nelyubov

Andrey Zvyagintsev

Andrey Zvyagintsev (Leviathan) won the Cannes Jury Prize for his stark and gripping tale of a divorcing couple caught in a missing-child procedural.

BPM (Beats Per Minute)

120 battements par minute

Robin Campillo

A wary newcomer to the radical activist life risks his heart with one of its firecracker stars in this stirring and moving exploration of the ACT UP movement that protested government inaction on AIDS in the 90s.

Patti Cake$

Geremy Jasper

Music video director Geremy Jasper launches an unlikely rap star – a plus-size, white New Jersey rapper played by Aussie sensation Danielle Macdonald – in this high-energy feature debut.

Waru

Briar Grace-Smith, Casey Kaa, Ainsley Gardiner, Katie Wolfe, Chelsea Cohen, Renae Maihi, Paula Jones, Awanui Simich-Pene

Eight Māori female directors have each contributed a sequence to this powerful and challenging feature which unfolds around the tangi of a small boy who died at the hands of his caregiver.

The Other Side of Hope

Toivon tuolla puolen

Aki Kaurismäki

A Syrian stowaway lands up in Helsinki and finds refuge working in the worst restaurant in town in this funny, gorgeously filmed new tragicomedy from Finland hangdog maestro, Aki Kaurismäki.

One Island of Good

Tim McInnes

Alternative Education, the system catering to youth excluded by mainstream schools, comes under scrutiny in this impressively frank documentary about a YMCA Christchurch school trip to Nepal.

Ngā Whanaunga Māori Pasifika Shorts 2017

Check out the latest and best Māori and Pasifika short films as selected for NZIFF by Leo Koziol, Director of the Wairoa Māori Film Festival, and Craig Fasi, Director of the Pollywood Film Festival.

Heal the Living

Réparer les vivants

Katell Quillévéré

A catastrophic accident leaves one family in ruins and bestows another with precious hope in a hospital drama immeasurably enhanced by the delicate sensitivity of Katell Quillévéré’s script and the poetic force of her direction.

Una

Benedict Andrews

Rooney Mara is electrifying as the troubled young woman confronting the older man (Ben Mendelsohn) who seduced and abandoned her in this abrasive screen adaptation of David Harrower’s stage play Blackbird.

Step

Amanda Lipitz

Fighting the tough realities of their disadvantaged neighbourhood, Step follows three irrepressible young women in an enlightened Baltimore school as they prepare for college – and rehearse for step dance glory.