Helen Clark documentary at International Film Festival

Director Gaylene Preston will speak at the launch of the New Zealand International Film Festival in Nelson about her ...
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Director Gaylene Preston will speak at the launch of the New Zealand International Film Festival in Nelson about her documentary My Year with Helen, following former Prime Minister Helen Clark.

The New Zealand International Film Festival returns to Nelson from August 9 at the Suter Cinema. 

Gaylene Preston's My Year With Helen will open the festival after playing to sell-out screenings in Auckland and Wellington. Preston will be in attendance at the opening night screening to introduce her film.

The film follows Helen Clark in her role as head of the UN Development Programme and her campaign for the position of secretary general.

What eventuates becomes a compelling portrayal of the glass ceiling challenges for women striving for leadership roles.

"It's proving to be a great year for New Zealand documentaries and we're very happy to lead off our Nelson leg with one of the best. My Year with Helen made its international debut at Sydney and we now have the pleasure of welcoming it home," says NZIFF director Bill Gosden.

New Zealand films are a strong part of the programme with a further six films and two shorts programmes from Kiwi filmmakers.

Human Traces, shot in and around the Canterbury and Otago coasts, is a psychological thriller set on a subantarctic island and starring Sophie Henderson.

No Ordinary Sheila, is a beautiful journey, rich with archive material, about the life and adventures of writer, historian and illustrator Sheila Natusch, made by her cousin Hugh Macdonald (director of This Is New Zealand).

Kobi is the personal story of the life and work of Kobi Bosshard, the grandfather of contemporary jewellery in New Zealand. His daughter Andrea Bosshard has co-directed this loving portrait with her partner Shane Loader.

The full programme has 56 feature-length films and two short film programmes, including 11 films direct from Cannes.

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Sofia Coppola's The Beguiled, winner of Best Director at Cannes and starring Nicole Kidman, Colin Farrell and Kirsten Dunst will screen on Saturday August 12 and Tuesday August 15

Faces Places, a charming and uplifting road trip documentary with Agnes Varda, the queen of French New Wave, and young photo-muralist JR, will screen as the centrepiece presentation on Saturday August 19.

The Square from the director of Force Majeure (NZIFF'14), is a sardonic and darkly funny film about a museum curator and the world within which he works. The film won the Palm d'Or (Best film) at Cannes and will close the festival on Wednesday August 30.

Tickets are on sale now for the full line-up of films, with a number already proving popular for advance bookings. All information about the films and session times can be found at nziff.co.nz or in person at the Suter and State Cinemas. 

 - Stuff

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