Festival Programme

Films by Strand

Aotearoa

NEW ZEALAND FILMS AT NZIFF ARE PROUDLY SUPPORTED BY RESENE

We proudly present a slate of powerful local films that illuminate and challenge our national character. New documentaries shine a spotlight on personalities, cultural practices, artistic endeavours and influential industries that have shaped the unique face of Aotearoa. From deeply personal narratives of toil and triumph to provocative examinations of the forces that mold our society, these films illuminate the connections between past and present with power, ingenuity and humour.

Our fresh crop of homegrown feature films showcase the diversity and strength of local creatives, fearlessly delving into themes prescient to contemporary Aoteroa, such as alienation, belonging, sex and social media.

And we continue to celebrate the short film format with two curated programmes collecting the best new shorts from both Aotearoa and the Pacific community in New Zealand’s Best 2021 and Ngā Whanaunga Māori Pasifika Shorts. Plus we selected seven additional short films from New Zealand filmmakers which will screen ahead of feature films throughout the festival and have been matched with films that have thematic or tonal commonalities.

See also The Power of the Dog, Ayukawa: The Weight of a Life, Night Raiders, Mothers of the Revolution and Snakeskin

Mark Hunt - The Fight of His Life

Peter Brook Bell

Helming this compelling documentary following one of New Zealand's sporting superstars, Kiwi director Peter Brook Bell charts how Mark Hunt overcame a challenging childhood to rise to global success – despite his best efforts to throw it all away.

A Mild Touch of Cancer

Annie Goldson

Following the success of David Downs’ book of the same name, NZ director Annie Goldson (Brother Number One NZIFF 2011, Kim Dotcom: Caught in the Web NZIFF 2017) brings his story to the big screen.

MILKED

Amy Taylor

The biggest player in the New Zealand economy is put on notice in this spirited documentary that sees a young activist from rural Northland go up against the powerful dairy industry.

Millie Lies Low

Michelle Savill

After missing her flight to a prestigious internship, an anxiety-ridden architecture grad fakes being in New York while lying low in her home town scrounging for another ticket.

Patu!

Merata Mita

Patu! is the definitive film of the 1981 Springbok tour protests, a technically complex piece of guerrilla filmmaking that explicitly connects apartheid abroad and racism at home. Newly preserved by Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision.

There Is No I in Threesome

Jan Oliver Lucks

In love, newly engaged and maintaining a long-distance relationship, director Jan Oliver Lucks and his fiancée decide to throw traditional rules out the window by opening up their relationship before they tie the knot.

Whetū Mārama – Bright Star

Toby Mills, Aileen O'Sullivan

What Sir Edmund Hillary did in conquering Everest, Sir Hekenukumai Busby has done in reclaiming the lost art of traditional Māori voyaging, sailing the vast Pacific navigating by the stars – restoring the past to carve our way into the future.