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September 25, 2017

This year has been somewhat drier for horror films, with my last genuine thrill coming back in May with Get Out. Thankfully, IT scratched the itch. An adaption of Stephen King’s famous novel, all most people will want to hear is that IT lives up to every expectation. If you’ve seen the trailer you’ll know […]

September 25, 2017

“I want to suck Aronofsky’s dick after that.” — Anonymous companion of critic.   Aronofsky’s new film mother! is the most boundary pushing, experimental, intense film I’ve seen all year. It’s also the only film I’ve been to in a very, very long time where people walked out. As an allegory it is uncompromising, as […]

September 18, 2017

Salient touches on some pretty hot topics politically, socially, and culturally, so I thought I’d add to the mix by discussing the absolute shit-storm that has been going on behind closed doors at Lucasfilm, the production company in charge of Star Wars films, over the past few years. The franchise has had four directors quit […]

September 11, 2017

Once Were Warriors director Lee Tamahori gives an interesting portrayal of Witi Ihimaera’s 1994 award-winning novel Bulibasha: King of the Gypsies in his 2016 film Mahana. Tamahori has the ability to initiate any city dweller into daydreams of manure with his sweet cinematography of rolling green hills. He also features a handsome cast with lead […]

August 21, 2017

In only a few minutes of screen time, Captain America: Civil War tells a more accurate and, in my view, more edifying story of disability than most Hollywood films do in upwards of two hours. Okay, bear with me. In case you haven’t seen Civil War (or the memory of it has been crushed by […]

August 14, 2017

There are children’s films, and there are films about children. If ever there were a film that proves how different those two categories are, it’s A Monster Calls, one of this year’s offerings from the NZIFF. With a screenplay written by Patrick Ness, adapted from his novel of the same name, A Monster Calls shows […]

August 14, 2017

Janet (Kirsten Scott Thomas) has just been named the new Minister of Health and invites a group of friends to celebrate with her. Her husband Bill (Timothy Spall) is drunk and despondent, her friend April (Patricia Clarkson) can barely contain her nihilist despair, and Tom (Cillian Murphy) is on the verge of a nervous breakdown. […]

August 7, 2017

Now, I know what you’re thinking. 10 Things I Hate About You, that ’90s movie where the angry feminist gives up her whole identity to win lush-locked young Heath Ledger — how can that be a nuanced exploration of the struggles of modern day female freedom-fighters? Well. Let’s think about Kat Stratford (remember Julia Stiles […]

July 17, 2017

All I have to say about the film tonight is that I’ll be astounded if you don’t all love it. When I got an email from the New Zealand International Film Festival organisers, I was saddened that the first sentence of their message did not contain the words “free tickets.” My spirits were however lifted […]