The Wellington Film Guide

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Funerals and Snakes
Cinemas of New Zealand

 T H I S   W E E K   I N   W E L L I N G T O N

T H U R S D A Y   1 8   S E P T E M B E R  -
  W E D N E S D A Y   2 4   S E P T E M B E R   2 0 1 4  

t h e   f i l m s

n e w s   c l i p s

  • The Wellington Film Society, 6.15pm Monday 22 September at the Paramount:
    FALLEN CITY (Zhao Qi, China 2011).
    An earthquake destroyed the city of Beichuan in Sichuan's mountainous north in 2008, leaving thousands dead and millions homeless. The Chinese government decided to rebuild a new, improved city just down the road. As the spacious modern apartments take shape, debut director Zhao Qi (co-producer of Last Train Home) follows three sets of survivors. They are a couple mourning the death of their 11-year-old daughter, a newly fatherless teenage boy battling with his mother, and a woman so desperate to care for her sole surviving relative that she fails to see just how far her life has gone astray. Their struggles with the day-to-day are framed against their country's relentless pursuit of progress; and their stories ache with the pain of their damaged lives. Visually impressive, this is a profoundly moving film, and a testimony to a society's will to endure. - Sydney Film Festival 2013.
    Members only. Memberships available before the screening.

  • Nga Taonga Sound and Vision. In the Mediatheatre all week, Himiona Grace's THE PA BOYS (NZ 2014). For more details, check out the calender of screenings and events.

  • Film Festivals to note:
  • ITALIAN FILM FESTIVAL 2014, Embassy 9-26 October. Brochures are out and advance tickets are available now.
  • SHOW ME SHORTS 2014, Paramount 13-14 November.
  • If your festival is not listed here, please advise the Cinemaster

    This site relies on the various cinemas having their own websites up to date to access their screening times.
    The paragraphs describing the films starting this week are in most cases adapted from the linked reviews.

    For comments and movie news, contact the Cinemaster at

    s t a r t s   t h i s   w e e k!

    THE LUNCHBOX - Indian director Ritesh Batra's debut is a witty and perceptive film that reveals the hopes, sorrows and regrets of ordinary people. Batra, also the film's screenwriter, has created a touching and credible story that easily draws the viewer into the lives of its characters. All the usual flash and color of India is absent here. In its place are the simple actions of everyday life. From the International Film Festival. Also Lighthouse.

    LOCKE - A lean, real-time account of a construction supervisor facing the loss of his home, marriage and job to honor a commitment and exorcise the sins of his father, this turns even mundane details into flavorful dramatic grist. British screenwriter Steven Knight's second film as director could easily be a theater piece and yet it's bracingly cinematic, powered by Tom Hardy's controlled performance, which packs an emotional charge intensified by its restraint. From the International Film Festival. Also Lighthouse Petone.

    SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR - When Sin City was released in 2005, it was a remarkable achievement - a comic book adaptation that didn't look or feel like every other comic book adaptation. It was bold, daring, and drunk on visual excess. Those qualities remain in A Dame to Kill For, although the passage of time and a change in how movies are presented has tamed the uniqueness. This movie is mostly about visual razzle-dazzle and riffing on film noir conceits. Robert Rodriguez hasn't deviated far from his mission statement for the original and that's a good thing. Also Queensgate, Reading Porirua and Coatlands.

    STEP UP ALL IN - With even less plot than in previous installments to get in the way of its inventive 3D dance scenes, this fifth pic delivers on spectacle - especially in its nine-minute, flame-throwing Caesars Palace finale - but lacks in chemistry, trying to pair the leads of the second and fourth films after their co-stars dumped them. Although the series' box office has been slipping, this "all in" reunion (minus Channing Tatum) could reverse the trend ever so slightly. Also Queensgate, Reading Porirua and Coatlands.

    BELOVED SISTERS - A tonally odd melodrama, mostly played out in the lavish drawing rooms of Germany's Ancien Regime, about the love two sisters have for the same man. Fans of period drama may find much to admire in the stiff upper lips, intricately laced corsets and gleaming china dinner set. The beloved sisters of the title are Caroline and Charlotte von Lengefeld, the real life lovers of classical German writer Friedrich Schiller, who was chums with Goethe. Well acted, and for the most part, riveting and emotionally involving melodrama. From the International Film Festival.

    u p c o m i n g   f i l m s
    THE BOXTROLLS Sep 25 Readings
    THE MAZE RUNNER Sep 25 Readings
    PLANES: FIRE AND RESCUE Sep 25 Readings
    THE EQUALIZER Sep 25 Readings
    HIP HOP ERATION Sep 25 Penthouse
    ROCK THE CASBAH Sep 25 Penthouse
    DRACULA UNTOLD Oct 02 Readings
    GONE GIRL Oct 02 Readings
    REACHING FOR THE MOON Oct 02 Penthouse
    YVES SAINT LAURENT Oct 09 Paramount
    WE ARE THE BEST Oct 09 Penthouse
    THE JUDGE Oct 09 Readings


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