By the time of Monday’s official programme launch, much of the local content in this year’s festival had already been teased out in earlier announcements, but three local features also make the cut, along with one more doco and some additional shorts.
The Kiwi input now extends to four dramatic features, including the previously announced Make My Movie winner How to Meet Girls from a Distance.
Aucklanders won’t get the chance to see one of the features, with Juliet Bergh’s Existence screening in Wellington only. Shame, as it will be the first of the NZFC Escalator films, funded at $250,000, to see the light of day. The film is described as “a salvage punk Western set in a dystopian future”. It was shot in Wellington, which can do dystopian on a bad day.
The two remaining features to get a run in Auckland will be Alyx Duncan’s The Red House and Jeremy Dumble & Adam Luxton’s We Feel Fine.
The Red House was developed with Theatre in Motion in Beijing during a Asia NZ-supported residency in 2010 and at last year’s Berlinale Talent Campus.
A cross cultural love story of a NZ Pakeha and Chinese couple, it was partly shot by Chris Pryor, half of the team whose How Far is Heaven? is one of the NZIFF documentary selections.
We Feel Fine is a micro-budget movie, shot in Auckland. It “tracks random sets of characters linked by a bizarre video project” and features a turn by the director of last year’s NZIFF opener, Florian Habicht.
Falling somewhere between local and not, the Peter Jackson-produced, US shot and Sundance-premiered West of Memphis, directed by Amy Berg, gets its NZIFF outing. Jackson and one of the film’s subjects, Damien Echols, will present the film in Auckland and do a Q&A at its single Auckland screening.
Ten other local documentaries were previously announced, as were two shorts programmes, the New Zealand’s Best competition line-up and the Wairoa-curated Ngā; Whanaunga Māori Pasifika Shorts programme.
More local shorts have appeared now the full programme is released.
Richard Mans’ Abiogenesis finds a home in the Animation Now programme, and screening ahead of Zal Batmanglij’s Sound of My Voice. Other NZ shorts screening ahead of features are Daniel Belton’s Ato-Miss (w/ Grandma Lo-fi); Alistair Cole’s Do You Really Love Me? (w/ Bonsai); Matthew Saville’s Hitch Hike w/ Killer Joe); Jackie Van Beek’s In Safe Hands (w/ Shock Head Soul); Vincent Ward’s Inhale | Exhale (w/ The Wall); Michael Hobbs’ em>Shakuhachi (w/ Planet of Snail); Thomas Murphy’s SNAP (w/ A Monster in Paris); Hamish Mortland’s Suni Man (w/ My Brother the Devil); Michael Duignan’s Ten Thousand Days (w/ Wish You Were Here); Gavin Hipkins’ This Fine Island (w/ local doc Persuading the Baby to Float); and Yamin Tun’s Two Princes (w/ In My Mother’s Arms).
Two films screening in the New Zealand’s Best short film competition get additional screenings ahead of features: Zia Mandviwalla’s Night Shift (w/ Where Do We Go Now?); and Sam Kelly’s Lambs (w/ Monsieur Lazhar, but not at The Bridgeway).
Finally, at the more esoteric end of the local fare, the second Artists Cinema programme will screen at the Auckland Art Gallery, offering works by “established artists more usually associated with the gallery context”. The programme includes
Steve Carr’s Burn Out, Simon Denny’s Envisaging Vocational Rehabilitation, Peter Wareing’s Exterior Signals, Miranda Parkes’ Credits, Gabriel White’s Triangleland, Tahi Moore’s structure narratives pans and Karin Hopfko’s Self-titled.