Wellington Film Festival programme annnounced
As the programme for the Wellington leg of the New Zealand International Film Festival goes live and hits the streets, Culture profiles the titles with a Capital connection.
Described by those in the know as "a truly beautiful tribute to Wellington", the multi-talented, multi-tasking Hayden J Weal's inventive rom-com sees him play a café worker who is plagued by weird dreams and cryptic messages scrawled on his bedroom window.
Only screening in Wellington, where it will have its world premiere, the film also stars Cohen Holloway, Michelle Ny and Hunt for the Wilderpeople's Julian Dennison.
The 5th Eye
From the directors of Operation 8 (Abi King-Jones and Errol Wright) , which focused on the 2007 "anti-terror raids", comes this densely-packed documentary which questions the price of New Zealand's involvement in the Five Eyes intelligence alliance and looks at the improbably tale of the 2008 "sabotage" by the "Waihopai Three".
Succinctly described as a blow-by-blow account of the GCSB's (Government Communications Security Bureau) misadventures.
The HeART of the Matter
Luit Bieringa's passion-project (he has been collecting material for it since the 1970s) examines the legacy of Gordon Tovey and his post-war education programmes that put art, artists, and Māori arts in particular, into the New Zealand classroom.
Features a host of archival interviews and little-seen footage.
Michael Smither: Portraits
The seventh of ten planned documentaries by Wellington filmmaker Tony Hiles about his good friend, 77-year-old artist Michael Smither, sees the latter setting aside some health issues to return to portraiture after a 40 year break.
It has already been heralded as being "uncommonly moving".
Although very much a Canterbury tale, The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan's documentary on unsung Kiwi cycling hero Harry Watson and the 1928 Tour de France was inspired by a book written by Wellington authors The Kennett Bros, called The Mile Eater.
Stevo (Nga Whanaunga Maori Pasifika Shorts)
Heather Hayward directs this tale about a Wellington security guard who brings traditional Māori ways of trade and barter to his life in the city.
Judgment Tavern (New Zealand's Best Shorts)
A young girl and her disembodied father search for his missing body in Dean Hewison's swords and sorcery filled fantasy short.
Wait (New Zealand's Best Shorts)
Co-produced by Gardening with Soul's Vicky Pope, this Mandarin and English drama is about a young girl who helps her immigrant mother overcome both cultural and emotional barriers.
Schmeat (New Zealand's Best Shorts)
Matasila Freshwater's Tim Burton-esque tale is set in an animated dystopia where food and resources are scarce.
Spring Jam (New Zealand's Best Shorts)
Billed as charming and witty, Ned Wenlock's animated tale focuses on a young buck who suffers a major case of antler-envy.
The 45th edition of the Wellington leg of the New Zealand International Film Festival will screen at various venues from July 22 to August 7. Tickets go on sale next Thursday, June 30, via nziff.co.nz