Screened as part of NZIFF 2022

We Are Still Here 2022

Directed by Beck Cole, Danielle MacLean, Dena Curtis, Tim Worrall, Richard Curtis, Miki Magasiva, Mario Gaoa, Chantelle Burgoyne, Tracey Rigney, Renae Maihi Aotearoa

To sit, to listen to witness. Starting points for a multi-layered journey bring you to the brink of interaction between cultures, then, now, and what may be. Set in various flashpoints in time.

Aug 04

The Civic

Aug 05

The Civic

Aotearoa New Zealand / Australia In Arrernte, English, Samoan, Te reo Māori and Turkish with English subtitles
90 minutes DCP



Danielle MacLean
Dena Curtis
Tim Worrall
Richard Curtis
Miki Magasiva
Mario Gaoa
Tiraroa Reweti
Tracey Rigney
Renae Maihi
Samuel Nuggin-Paynter


Ray Edwards
Eric Murray Lui


Roland Gallois

Production designers

Guy Moana
Natalie Beak

Costume designers

Te Ura Hoskins
Karla Urizar
Heather Wallace


Mahuia Bridgman-Cooper


Clarence Ryan (Ken)
Tioreore Ngātai-Melbourne (Te Mauniko)
Villa Lemanu (Bernard)
Lisa Flanagan (Katherine)
Meyne Wyatt (Michael)
Leonie Whyman (Janet)
Calvin Tuteao (Hokonui)
Evander Brown (Rob)
Sean Mununggurr (Kngwarraye)
Megan Wilding (Ruby)
Willow Rupapera (Kōtiro)


Sydney 2022


Aotearoa New Zealand films at NZIFF 2022 are proudly supported by


Ten indigenous filmmakers from Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand deliver a cinematic response to the anniversary of James Cook landing on our shores and a strident reminder that after 250 years of colonialism; We Are Still Here

“Awash with animated colours, a painterly opening sequence depicts two women, a mother, and a daughter, in a traditional style watercraft. Next, in 1859, a white man encounters a group of Aboriginal Australian peoples in the Arrernte lands, at Mparntwe (Alice Springs) and surrounding areas of the Central Australia region of the Northern Territory. Sand, fire, stars.

In 1864, Te Urewera was ancient and enduring; the scenery and the Tūhoe people were abundant and formidable. Taking a foothold in these lineages, we make sense of destiny and decisions, compromises and strategy. There is a gun, a hut, a haka, and crucial moments. It shoots.

Another embattlement centres on a New Zealand soldier in Gallipoli, 1915. His fully-fledged frustration reaches a high point in the trench where a bag lands – then flash to more visions of a future city sparkling in the daughter's eyes. The soldier's hongi, the soil is placed in their hands, and a tangi for those lost in battle rings out.

It is Auckland 2274. Climate change and sign language form the environment as megaphone instructions blare and bark in the bleak, post-apocalyptic world: a koro and his moko: Invasion Day, Narrm 2021, graffiti walls, marches, and blood wrists. Springbok Tour Protests, 1981. ‘Leave the savages here,’ one of the cops' snarls.

Mparntwe, 2021, the policing of Aboriginal men and liquor. Ruby, the sassy grog shop assistant, sweetly says, ‘Sorry you had to go through that yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that.’ Ken replies: ‘It's alright, I have thick skin’.” — Jack Gray 

Q&As with filmmakers from We Are Still Here will take place following selected screenings. 
Australian filmmaker travel is supported by the Australian High Commission and Screen Australia.