The Wellington Film Guide

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 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   2 9   S E P T E M B E R  -
  W E D N E S D A Y   5   O C T O B E R   2 0 1 6  

t h e   f i l m s

n e w s   c l i p s

  • The Wellington Film Society, 6.15pm Monday 3 October at the Paramount: THE DIVIDED HEAVEN (Konrad Wolf, East Germany 1964). The first of three films by East German director Konrad Wold, screened in co-operation with the Goethe Institut.
    East Germany in 1961, just before the construction of the Berlin Wall. After suffering a nervous breakdown, Rita Seidel returns to her village from the city of Halle to find peace and quiet. She recalls the past years, her love for chemist Manfred Herrfurth, her work in a railway car factory and her studies to become a teacher. There were problems with political opportunists and ideological hardliners in the factory and at university. Rita's love affair came to an end after Manfred, bitter that uncompromising supervisors had rejected his new chemical process, fled the city for West Berlin without Rita, who chose not to join him. This film, created just a few years after the Wall was constructed, is one of the bravest movies ever to be made in the GDR - not only because of its unusual dramaturgy, but also because it seeks responsibility for conflicts in one's own country and not with the 'class enemy'.
    Members free. Public by donation (notes only), at the door before the screening starts..

  • Nga Taonga Sound and Vision. At the Mediatheatre on alternate days till Friday 7 October: THE BATTLE OF THE SOMME (UK 1916, restored 2006). Also this week, Barry Barclay's THE NEGLECTED MIRACLE (NZ 1985). Check out Nga Taonga's calendar of screenings and events.

  • Film Festivals to note:
  • Show Me Shorts Film Festival 2016 Embassy, 13-26 October.<.br> The programme has been announced. Check it out on line - and book your tickets.
  • Japan Film Festival 2016 Paramount, 18 - 22 October.
  • Music Film Festival 2016 Paramount, 28 October - 13 November. A printed schedule is available at the cinema, and bookings are available now.
  • 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.

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    s t a r t s   t h i s   w e e k!

    THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN (2016) - Antoine Fuqua's remake of John Sturges's Hollywood classic (itself a remake of Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samurai) can't and shouldn't obscure its origins. It lives and dies by being of the now, and this helps and harms the final product. Denzel Washington's classic western hero is commandingly cool and supported by a rakish Chris Pratt, but there's a great deal of waiting around for something to happen. Also Empire, Roxy, Readings, Queensgate, Monterey and Coastlands.

    MISS PEREGRINE'S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN - Ransom Riggs' novel, about a group of special children with extraordinary powers, may as well have been written for Tim Burton to direct. The novel was inspired by the author's personal collection of vintage photographs - including a floating girl, an invisible boy, and other such darkroom dodges. Known as "peculiars", this eccentric mix of wartime refugees are like a cross between the Addams Family and the X-Men, each one blessed with some outre ability, from spontaneously igniting anything they touch to bringing inanimate objects to life. Also Empire, Roxy, Readings, Lighthouse, Queensgate, Monterey and Coastlands.

    I BELONGED TO YOU - Based on the bestselling series of short stories by renowned Chinese writer Zhang Jiajia, this is a touching romantic tale revolving around two radio disc jockeys and the world they inhabit. No reviews.

    M S DHONI: THE UNTOLD STORY - A Bollywood biographical film directed by Neeraj Pandey, based on the life of Indian cricketer and the current ODI and T20I captain of the Indian national cricket team, Mahendra Singh Dhoni. No reviews. Also Queensgate.

    POLISH FILM FESTIVAL 2016 - The first ever Polish Film Festival runs from 30 September to 9 October. Includes a range of titles, from two Krzysztof Kieslowski classics from the nineties, to a quick return from this year's NZIFF of THE LURE. No individual reviews.

    THE FIRST MONDAY IN MAY - The basement placement of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute of New York makes for a pretty irresistible metaphor for how high up on the priority list fashion once was for the Met. Every May, the Costume Institute mounts a major exhibition, ceremoniously ribbon-cut with the annual Met Ball, a themed party and fundraiser thronging with fashion designers, celebrities, and socialites. This film tracks the months of concurrent planning leading up to 2015's China: Through the Looking Glass exhibition and gala. From the NZIFF. Also Roxy, Lighthouse and Shoreline.

    OUR LAST TANGO - They were lovers, dance partners and two of the artists who did the most to take tango from the streets of Buenos Aires to Broadway and beyond. But Maria Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes endured as much backstage drama as any friction-fueled rock band. Both dancers (now in their 80s) are interviewed for the film, which makes a dramatic point of bringing them together one last time on stage. But Nieves does most of the talking, offering a loved-and-abandoned perspective more suitable for tango's melodrama than that of Copes, who remained a performing star for decades after leaving her for younger dance partners and a new wife. From the NZIFF.

    u p c o m i n g   f i l m s
    THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN Oct 06 Readings
    DEEPWATER HORIZON Oct 06 Readings
    INFERNO Oct 13 Readings
    THE CLAN Oct 13 Paramount
    GOLDEN YEARS Oct 13 Penthouse
    THE DAUGHTER Oct 13 Lighthouse
    Oct 20 Readings
    CAFE SOCIETY Oct 20 Lighthouse
    THE FOUNDER Nov 24 Lighthouse


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