New Zealand drama films

Posted Apr 30, 2012 by Kiwigirl15
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  1. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

    The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)


    The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is a 2003 epic high fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson based on the second and third volumes of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. It is the third and final instalment in The Lord of the Rings series, following The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) and The Two Towers (2002).

  2. The Lovely Bones

    The Lovely Bones (2009)


    The Lovely Bones is a 2009 supernatural drama film directed by Peter Jackson and stars Mark Wahlberg, Rachel Weisz, Susan Sarandon, Stanley Tucci, Michael Imperioli, and Saoirse Ronan. A film adaptation of the award-winning and best-selling 2002 novel of the same name by Alice Sebold, the film received numerous accolades, including a Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild, BAFTA and Academy Award nominations.

  3. Whale Rider

    Whale Rider (2002)


    Whale Rider (also known as The Whale Rider) is a 2002 New Zealand-German family drama film directed by Niki Caro, based on the novel of the same name by Witi Ihimaera. The film stars Keisha Castle-Hughes as Kahu Paikea Apirana, a twelve-year-old Maori girl who wants to become the chief of the tribe. Her grandfather Koro believes that this is a role reserved for males only. The film was a coproduction between New Zealand and Germany. It was shot on location in Whangara, the setting of the novel. The world premiere was on 9 September 2002, at the Toronto International Film Festival. The film received critical acclaim upon its release. At age 13, Keisha Castle-Hughes became the youngest nominee for the Academy Award for Best Actress before she was surpassed by Quvenzhané Wallis, at age 9, for Beasts of the Southern Wild less than a decade later. The film earned $41.4 million on a NZ$$9,235,000 budget.

  4. Once Were Warriors

    Once Were Warriors (1994)


    Once Were Warriors is a 1994 New Zealand drama film based on New Zealand author Alan Duff's bestselling 1990 first novel. The film tells the story of the Hekes, an urban Māori family, and their problems with poverty, alcoholism, and domestic violence, mostly brought on by the patriarch Jake. The film was directed by Lee Tamahori and stars Rena Owen and Temuera Morrison.

  5. Heavenly Creatures

    Heavenly Creatures (1994)


    Heavenly Creatures is a 1994 New Zealand drama film directed by Peter Jackson, from a screenplay he co-wrote with his partner, Fran Walsh, about the notorious 1954 Parker–Hulme murder case in Christchurch, New Zealand. The film features Melanie Lynskey and Kate Winslet in their screen debuts with supporting roles by Sarah Peirse, Diana Kent, Clive Merrison, and Simon O'Connor. The main premise deals with the obsessive relationship between two teenage girls, Pauline Parker and Juliet Hulme, who murder Parker's mother. The events of the film cover the period from the girls' meeting in 1952 to the murder in 1954.

  6. Boy

    Boy (2010)


    Boy is a 2010 New Zealand coming-of-age comedy-drama film starring James Rolleston, Te Aho Aho Eketone-Whitu, Taika Waititi, Moerangi Tihore, Cherilee Martin, RickyLee Waipuka-Russell, Haze Reweti, Maakariini Butler, Rajvinder Eria, Manihera Rangiuaia, Darcy Ray Flavell-Hudson, Rachel House, Craig Hall, Waihoroi Shortland, Cohen Holloway, Pana Hema Taylor and Mavis Paenga, written and directed by Taika Waititi, produced by Cliff Curtis, Ainsley Gardiner and Emanuel Michael and financed by the New Zealand Film Commission. In New Zealand, the film eclipsed previous records for a first week's box office takings for a local production. Boy went on to become the highest grossing New Zealand film at the local box office. The soundtrack to Boy features New Zealand artists such as The Phoenix Foundation, who previously provided music for Waititi's film Eagle vs Shark. Boy was released on DVD and Blu-ray in 2011 by Paramount Home Media Distribution.

  7. Separation City

    Separation City (2009)


    Separation City is a 2009 New Zealand film starring Joel Edgerton, Rhona Mitra, Danielle Cormack, and Les Hill. It is directed by Paul Middleditch. Filming concluded in June, 2009, after 5 weeks of shooting.

  8. Out of the Blue

    Out of the Blue (2006)


    Out of the Blue is a 2006 New Zealand crime drama film directed by Robert Sarkies and starring Karl Urban. The film premiered at the 2006 Toronto Film Festival in Canada and was released in New Zealand on 12 October 2006 to minor controversy. The film has since grossed well over $1 million at the New Zealand box-office taking it into the top ten highest grossing local films.

  9. Treasure of the Yankee Zephyr

    Treasure of the Yankee Zephyr (1981)


    Race for the Yankee Zephyr is a 1981 New Zealand suspense–action–thriller film directed by David Hemmings and starring Ken Wahl, Lesley Ann Warren, George Peppard and Donald Pleasence.

  10. Among the Cinders

    Among the Cinders (1983)


    Among the Cinders is a 1983 New Zealand drama film directed by Rolf Hädrich and starring Paul O'Shea, Amanda Jones, Derek Hardwick and Yvonne Lawley. After a hunting accident in which his friend is killed (for which he blames himself) a boy (Nick) runs away from home and goes to live with his grandparents, where he matures into a man.

  11. A Maori Maid's Love

    A Maori Maid's Love (1916)


    A Maori Maid's Love (Originally titled The Surveyor's Daughter) is a 1916 Australian silent film directed by Raymond Longford about an interracial romance between a white man and a Māori girl. It is considered a lost film as there are no known copies.

  12. Z for Zachariah

    Z for Zachariah (2015)


    Z for Zachariah is a 2015 Icelandic science fiction drama film, based on the book of the same name by Robert C. O'Brien, directed by Craig Zobel and written by Nissar Modi. The film stars Margot Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Chris Pine. The film was released on August 28, 2015, in the United States by Roadside Attractions.

  13. The Insatiable Moon

    The Insatiable Moon (2010)


    The Insatiable Moon is a 2010 New Zealand drama film, based on a 1997 novel of the same name by Mike Riddell, who also wrote the screenplay. The film was directed by Rosemary Riddell, and stars Rawiri Paratene in the leading role as Arthur, self-proclaimed second son of God. Arthur sets off on a mission to find the 'Queen of Heaven', and finds her in Margaret (Sara Wiseman), just as the community boarding house he calls home faces threat.

  14. The Mutiny of the Bounty

    The Mutiny of the Bounty (1916)


    The Mutiny of the Bounty is a 1916 Australian-New Zealand silent film directed by Raymond Longford about the mutiny aboard HMS Bounty. It is the first known cinematic dramatisation of this story and is considered a lost film.

  15. Kingpin

    Kingpin (1985)


    Kingpin is a 1985 New Zealand drama film directed by Mike Walker. It was entered into the 14th Moscow International Film Festival.

  16. Runaway

    Runaway (1964)


    Runaway, also called Runaway Killer, is a 1964 New Zealand made thriller film and a road movie. John O’Shea of Pacific Films produced, directed and co-wrote it. Shot in black & white and released on 35 mm and also 16 mm, it was cut to 80 minutes and renamed Runaway Killer for release in Britain, although this lost continuity between scenes. The film starred Colin Broadley in the lead, and several New Zealanders who became famous in other fields; Kiri Te Kanawa, Barry Crump and Ray Columbus.

  17. The Dark Horse

    The Dark Horse (2014)


    The Dark Horse is a 2014 New Zealand drama film written and directed by James Napier Robertson and starring Cliff Curtis and James Rolleston. It won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor and Best Score at the 2014 New Zealand Film Awards, Best Film at the 2015 Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF), 2015 San Francisco International Film Festival (SFIFF) and 2015 Rotterdam International Film Festival (IFFR), and was labeled by leading New Zealand critics as "One of the greatest New Zealand films ever made". It premiered at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and was created by production company Four Knights Film. The film is being released theatrically in the U.S. by Broad Green Pictures on April 1, 2016.

  18. White Lies

    White Lies (2013)


    White Lies is a 2013 New Zealand film directed by Dana Rotberg, based on the Witi Ihimaera novel, Medicine Woman. The film stars Whirimako Black, Antonia Prebble, and Rachel House. The film premiered in New Zealand cinemas on 27 June 2013. It was screened in the Contemporary World Cinema section at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. The film was selected as the New Zealand entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards, but it was not nominated.

  19. Born to Dance

    Born to Dance (2015)


    Born to Dance is a 2015 New Zealand feature film. It was written by Steve Barr, Hone Kouka and Casey Whelan and is the feature film direction debut by Tammy Davis, best known for his role as Munter in Outrageous Fortune. The film was released on 24 September 2015 in New Zealand. Born to Dance is choreographed by Parris Goebel, who has worked with Jennifer Lopez and Cirque du Soleil, as well as recently acting and co-choreographing in the fifth instalment of the Step Up franchise.

  20. Free in Deed

    Free in Deed (2015)


    Free in Deed is a 2015 American-New Zealand drama film directed by Jake Mahaffy. It was won the award for Best Film in the Horizons section of the 72nd Venice International Film Festival.

  21. Primitive Passions

    Primitive Passions (1935)


    Hei Tiki also known as Primitive Passions and Hei Tiki: A Saga of the Maoris was a 1935 American film made in New Zealand by the eccentric Alexander Markey, and released with sound added in America. The film gained notoriety in America by having scenes of nudity cut in various states.

  22. The Devil's Pit

    The Devil's Pit (1929)


    Under the Southern Cross also known as The Devil’s Pit or Taranga, is a 1929 American drama film set in New Zealand, directed by Lew Collins for Universal Studios, who also wrote the screenplay. Originally titled Taranga by the original director Alexander Markey, but was completed by Collins and released as Under the Southern Cross in 1929, then with the introduction of sound was given a soundtrack and retitled The Devil’s Pit in 1930. The film was shot on White Island, which has an active volcano.

  23. Leave All Fair

    Leave All Fair (1985)


    Leave All Fair is a 1985 New Zealand made film starring John Gielgud as John Middleton Murry the husband of Katherine Mansfield. He is presented as a sanctimonious exploiter of her memory, who ill-treated her during their association. Jane Birkin plays both Mansfield in flashbacks and the fictitious Marie Taylor who finds a letter from the dying Mansfield to Murry in his papers.

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