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NZIFF grabs Sundance handful

The New Zealand International Film Festival (NZIFF) today revealed five Sundance selections for its 2015 programme: The Diary of a Teenage Girl, Grandma, Umrika and docos Cartel Land and The Wolfpack.

Diary of a Teenage Girl

Diary of a Teenage Girl

Marielle Heller’s The Diary of a Teenage Girl is based on the graphic novel by Phoebe Glockener. Exhilarating in its candour and ironic verve, The Diary of a Teenage Girl recounts the visceral thrills and spills of 15-year-old boundary-pushing Minnie (Bel Powley) as she throws herself into her first affair – with her mother’s boyfriend.

In Grandma, a constantly surprising comedy drama from About a Boy director Paul Weitz, Lily Tomlin is hilarious and moving as a sharp-tongued, taboo-breaking granny who comes out fighting for her pregnant teenage granddaughter.

Winner of Sundance’s Audience Award for World Cinema, writer/director Prashant Nair’s Umrika is a handsomely produced Bollywood film telling a classic tale of country lads finding their bearings in the big city.

Matthew Heineman’s unnervingly action-based documentary Cartel Land captures the impact of Mexican drug cartels on both sides of the border. With staggering front-line access, Heineman observes the retaliatory forces that have formed in response to oppressive cartel violence and governmental indifference.

Sundance’s Documentary Grand Jury Prize winner, Crystal Moselle’s The Wolfpack delves into the bizarrely sheltered lives of six brothers whose father has confined them and their sister since birth to the tiny rooms of their Lower East Side apartment.

The NZIFF’s full programme will be available in Auckland on 23 June, in Wellington on 26 June, and rolled out into other centres from then. This year’s NZIFF runs in Auckland 16 July – 2 August; in Wellington 24 July – 9 August, with visits to 10 other centres confirmed until late September.

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