A 7-year-old child becomes caught in a conflict of loyalty after her beloved brother falls victim to brutal schoolyard bullying.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2022
“One of the discoveries of 2021, winning the FIPRESCI Award for the Un Certain Regard section in Cannes and the Sutherland Trophy at the BFI London Film Festival. One of the most insightful and incisive films made about childhood, it is set entirely at a school. As suggested by the original French title, Un monde ('A World'), its playground is a self-enclosed universe, where children learn how to integrate into the sometimes brutal rituals of society.
The story focuses on seven-year-old Nora (extraordinary discovery Maya Vanderbeque), an anxious newcomer plunged into the playground's hierarchies and rituals. Initially dependent on the protection of her older brother Abel (Gunter Düret), she finds herself trying to protect him when he becomes a victim of bullying.” — Jonathan Romney, Sight & Sound
“A gut-punch of a film that is not so much a portrait of schoolyard bullying as it is a sensory immersion… Playground is a sit-up-and-take-notice blend of outstandingly natural performances enhanced by spot-on cinematic choices.” — Lisa Nesselson, Screendaily