Festival Programme

Films by Strand

Framing Reality

The profusion of excellent documentaries available to us this year is staggering and we’ve found these absolute gems – ranging from uncovering unbelievable deception, exposing the diamond industry, a warts-and-all look at one of the world’s most famous (and volatile) sports personalities, to spotlights on turmoil in Myanmar and Ukraine.

You’ll find more documentaries in the Spotlight, Aotearoa and Portrait of an Artist strands.


Lachlan McLeod

This inspirational Australian documentary invites us into the world of trauma cleaning as run by the larger-than-life personality of Sandra Pankhurst, whose response to the chaos of death and squalor is simple kindness.

A House Made of Splinters

Simon Lereng Wilmont

Unwaveringly compassionate, this intimate and wrenching observation of a refuge for children, shot in pre-invasion Ukraine, deservedly won the Directing Award, World Cinema Documentary at Sundance 2022


Barney Douglas

Tennis legend John McEnroe dishes on the highs and lows of his epic career and how his drive for perfection nearly broke him in this engaging doco packed with amazing archival footage and rare insight.


Snow Hnin Ei Hlaing

Covertly shot over five years as a civil war escalates in western Myanmar, this delicately refined doco follows the lives of a hard-bitten Buddhist midwife and her ambitious young Rohingya Muslim apprentice.

My Old School

Jono McLeod

With shades of The Imposter (NZIFF 2012) and Three Identical Strangers (NZIFF 2018) this wildly entertaining Scottish documentary delves into the outrageous deception that shook a Glasgow high school back in the 1990s.

Nothing Lasts Forever

Jason Kohn

You’ll never look at diamonds the same way after seeing Jason Kohn’s stunning exposé of the true value of these precious gems and the secretive industry that sets their price.

The Territory

Alex Pritz

Chronicling the struggle of Indigenous people in Brazil to protect their ancestral land, this collaborative documentary was made with the involvement of the Uru-eu-wau-wau community.