George (Colin Firth) is a college professor who recently lost his lover, Jim, in a car accident. Terribly grief-stricken, George plans to commit suicide. As he goes about his daily routine and puts his affairs in order, his encounters with colleagues, students and an old friend (Julianne Moore) lead him to make a final decision as to whether life is worth living without Jim.
Music, art and chaos in the wild West-Berlin of the 1980s. The walled-in city became the creative melting pot for sub- and pop-culture. Before the iron curtain fell, everything and anything seemed possible. B-MOVIE is a fast-paced collage of mostly unreleased film and TV footage from a frenzied but creative decade, starting with punk and ending with the Love Parade, in a city where the days are short and the nights are endless. Where it was not about long-term success, but about living for the moment - the here and now.
“Most Germans, regardless of their level of education or their interest in art have heard of Joseph Beuys [1921–1986]. Born in Kleve, he walked the earth like a shaman, dressed in a hat and a khaki fishing vest, offered healing thoughts, aktionen (happenings) and confusing installation pieces suggesting ways to heal a wounded post-war Germany.
His personal legend includes being a member of Hitler youth, a gunner with the Luftwaffe and getting shot down over the Caucasus. His pilot died but he survived and, according to his story (which is gently questioned in the film), the Tartars rolled him in fat and wool until he could be brought to a hospital. Consequently, fat and wool figure prominently in his work.
Beuys shows you the man, his interactions with the press, his inner family life and the dilemmas he faced in his career: from youthful depression to starting a counter-cultural revolution.”— Rene J. Meyer-Grimberg, Berlin Film Journal
“Three years in the making, Beuys takes some, at least, of its stylistic cues from its restlessly creative subject, eschewing a conventional, chronological biopic approach for a more impressionistic collage that makes only sparing use of talking heads interviews (the most illuminating of which are with Beuys’s fiercely intelligent friend and curator Caroline Tisdall). More than 90% of the film consists of archive footage, still photos and audio recordings, some of them charting Beuys’s own performances, like his celebrated 1965 work ‘How to Explain Pictures to a Dead Hare’.”— Lee Marshall, Screen International
At his most powerful in the years after World War II, powerbroker and developer Robert Moses was determined to modernise New York and speed up the traffic. He demolished great swathes of housing to build high-rise accommodation and construct superhighways the length of Manhattan. David to his Goliath, Jane Jacobs led a grass-roots campaign to thwart his plan to plough an expressway across town, right through Lower Manhattan.
Author of The Death and Life of Great American Cities, Jacobs had a vision of urban life that involved people, neighbourhoods, heritage and habitation on a human scale, qualities Lower Manhattan enjoyed in abundance. Director Matt Tyrnauer (Valentino: The Last Emperor) has fashioned a lively documentary about the enduring issues enunciated so clearly in their clash.
“Tyrnauer transforms what could be a staid profile film into an urgent story about the dangers of ‘urban renewal,’ something Jacobs herself would admire... How do we retain neighborhood diversity amid rapid gentrification? Can a metropolis retain its humanity when everyone’s living in high-rises?” — April Wolfe, Village Voice
Gottfried Böhm (born in 1920) is widely regarded as Germany’s preeminent architect. His fame rests on numerous sacral buildings, with which he continued the work of his father, the master church builder Dominikus Böhm. Gottfried’s three sons, Stephen, Peter and Paul, have long been prominent architects as well. The film closely follows the family, examining a life marked by work – one that Gottfried Böhm’s wife, who sacrificed her own career for the sake of her husband, still participated in, despite her illness. Only after her death does the family become aware of the extent of her inspiration.
We all wear masks. Sometimes it takes an artist to see behind them. Grayson Perry will explore the theme of identity and portraiture.
Some of the portrait sitters have become miniatures, some large tapestries, some statues and, of course, some pots, but all of the works will be shown alongside portraits at National Portrait Gallery in a special display.
Auckland-based writer Hamish Win talks about Oscar Enberg’s new film Red Beryl and crocodile, Opal (Irrational Exuberance in the White Man's Hole) (2016-2017), currently exhibited as part of Projection Series #7: First as fiction, then as myth.
This documentary captures an intimate portrait of Ralph Hotere, one of Aotearoa’s most respected artists.
NZ, 2001, Colour, 82 min.
Dir. Merata Mita
In Zambian-born, Welsh-raised director Rungano Nyoni’s surreal tale, a nine-year-old village girl is accused of witchcraft and hauled off to do witch’s work. Her only transgression has been her lack of affect, but soon she’s identifying the culprit in a line-up of suspects, bringing on the rain, or, when there’s nothing more profitable available, posing for tourists. Though accusing someone of witchcraft is illegal in Zambia, Nyoni’s tale is based on continuing practices she observed herself, living for a month in a witch’s camp. The awfulness of her story is leavened by the merciless satirical eye she trains on superstition’s perpetrators – the men who put the women to work.
“‘When I die I will kill you,’ says an irked woman in one scene from I Am Not a Witch. This elderly lady, accused of witchcraft in Zambia, has reached her wits’ end with a farmer who’s forced her to work his fields...
The line sums up the absurd, paradoxical world of witchcraft. When you’ve been told you’re a witch, forced to live as a witch, forced to act as a witch, you might eventually start believing you’re a witch...
Director Rungano Nyoni has made the subject the focus of her debut feature film... a biting satire attacking the ignorance which provides oxygen for this hokum... Satire seemed to be the most appropriate way to tackle a subject poised on a knife edge between tragedy and farce. Underneath the humor there’s staunch determination from the director. ‘It’s so important that we’re not precious about (witchcraft), otherwise nothing gets done,’ she said.”— Thomas Page, CNN.com
In a modest workshop in a beautiful Central Otago landscape, Swiss goldsmith Kobi Bosshard, approaching 80 and widely regarded as the grandfather of contemporary New Zealand jewellery, continues to produce works of classic simplicity and elegance.
Daughter Andrea Bosshard’s lucid and loving film portrait of her father – and of her mother Patricia too – is one of the year’s loveliest films, a lyrical evocation of rich, unhurried life. Kobi moved to New Zealand in the early 60s, with goldsmithing in his blood. The ethos of the hippie era may have enabled his choice of profession, but there’s no mistaking the work ethic or quiet single-mindedness underlying his subsequent life of creativity.
Super 8 home movies brim with flowers and sunny days and evince an idyllic view of a fresh landscape and a young family in the New World. Plentiful archival footage reminds us of the days when TV broadcasters covered the arts, while readings from family letters take us into the heart of the family. This may be a very personal history, but it’s perfectly pitched for an audience of strangers: the filmmaker inscribes her own presence in the inspiring story of her parents’ lives with unusual grace.
An abundance of jewellery is alluringly displayed for the camera. The beauty of a lifetime’s work is proclaimed by a succession of true experts: women and a few men for whom Kobi has fashioned rings, brooches or necklaces, who speak eloquently about the pieces they have worn and treasured. It seems unlikely that Bosshard set out to recruit new customers for her father, but be warned, you may leave this gentle tribute to the simple life with a hankering to shop.
The eighth episode in NZIFF’s long-running serial, Tony Hiles’ planned ten-part series about his friend the painter Michael Smither is the simplest to date. The film that brought the two together, One Man and the Sea (1963), was about coastal erosion around New Plymouth and ways to combat it, using the sea itself, and driftwood. The experiments worked and reinforced Smither’s commitment to maintaining coastal pōhutukawa (and adding to them) to help manage erosion.
It is not only climate change that is challenging our coastline. Smithers lives just across the road from a small coastal reserve. For some of his neighbours, the centuries-old pōhutukawas are interfering with a view of the sea. One, in particular, has clearly been poisoned.
Michael’s silent protest is to plant two more for every one harmed. And to paint the trees in a way he has never tried before, specifically to capture the way the winter light off the sea flickers and shines through the foliage. Hiles follows as the work takes shape and the artist tells us what he’s up to. We watch as he notes down sketches from a bank above the trees until he hits on a striking configuration of tree limbs, leaves and light. Then he translates his drawing exactly into a large oil painting, magnificently realised in richly textured black and white.
R16Violence, sexual violence, offensive language & nudity
A "story inside a story," in which the first part follows a woman named Susan who receives a book manuscript from her ex-husband, a man whom she left 20 years earlier, asking for her opinion. The second element follows the actual manuscript, called "Nocturnal Animals," which revolves around a man whose family vacation turns violent and deadly. It also continues to follow the story of Susan, who finds herself recalling her first marriage and confronting some dark truths about herself.
Join Assistant Curator Tendai John Mutambu for a presentation on the Los Angeles-based artist Martine Syms whose work is currently showing in the exhibition Projection Series #7: First as fiction, then as myth.
Paul Fegan’s first feature documentary follows Scottish cult-pop raconteur and former Arab Strap frontman Aidan Moffat as he tours Scotland in 2014, performing his modern re-interpretations of old folk songs.
The ensuing film is a warm-hearted journey through music, mortality, landscape and time. It’s also a moving, wry and enlightening depiction of two of Scotland’s most distinct and vital voices, as they cross paths (and words): Moffat believes Scotland’s oldest songs are ripe for re-working against a contemporary urban backdrop. Stewart does not.
A young, mostly meek computer whiz named Benjamin (Tom Schilling) joins an ambitious group of amateur hackers who struggle to go above and beyond their usual pranks to be taken seriously both within the Darknet as well as in the real world…until things get dangerously out of hand in both realms.