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

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  W E D N E S D A Y   2 1   A P R I L   2 0 2 1  

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  • The Wellington Film Society, Embassy, Monday 19 April at 6.15pm, In The Fog (Sergy Loznitza, Germany/ Netherlands/ Belarus/Russia/Latvia 2012).
    Set in Belarus in 1942, this begins with a lengthy travelling shot (the first of only 70 or so shots in the movie), which ends with the Nazis hanging Belarussian resistance fighters. It then proceeds to chronicle what happens after two partisans arrive at the house of a comrade widely believed (since he alone was freed by the Nazis after a train was sabotaged) to have betrayed the executed men. He protests his innocence, but they are no more persuaded by his claims than his wife, and they take him through the forest, hoping to avoid discovery by the German forces patrolling the district. What follows not only shows the respective destinies of the three men but sketches, in flashback, their characters and their different responses to the question of how best to deal with the occupying German forces. Loznitsa adopts a slow, stately pace, allowing a number of cruel ironies to emerge from the stark, simple storyline with steadily accumulating dramatic force. - Geoff Andrew, Time Out.
    Anyone can join the Film Society at any time on line.

  • Film Festivals to note:
    The Resene Architecture and Design Film Festival 2021, 20 May-6 June. Lighthouse Cuba. You can download a .pdf of the brochure from the link.
    The NZ International Film Festival 2021, 4-21 November. Embassy, Penthouse, Roxy, Lighthouse Cuba and Petone, and Readings Porirua. Check the link for more details and the rationale for this year's delayed dates.
    If you have a festival due to run in Wellington and it's not listed here, contact 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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    For comments and movie news, contact the Cinemaster at

    s t a r t s   t h i s   w e e k!

    TOM AND JERRY - The movie is, first and foremost, cute. Animated animals - cats, a mouse, a rat, a dog, a goldfish, singing pigeons, peacocks and elephants - in live-action with real people New York city cute. The target demo here is the same as it ever was - 8-and-under. There's plenty of slapstick and critter gags for them, crashing furniture, trashed hotel rooms and wedding party mishaps. The rest of us? "Cute" it is and cute these two forever will be. Season Proper. Also Penthouse, Empire, Roxy, Lighthouse, Readings, Monterey, Coastlands and Shoreline.

    SIX MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT - This is the sort of high gloss "programme'" Hollywood and Pinewood (and Shepperton, etc.) used to turn out by the dozens. The plot has Nazis, spies, action and preposterous coincidences and improbabilities, a "talks too much" villain, cheap thrills and sentimental sop. But thanks to a game cast and a clever and historically-accurate hook, it's poppycock that plays. It's a trifle silly. But you don't have to take it seriously to lose yourself in the pleasure of some very fine actors having a go at an old fashioned B-movie. Also Lighthouse and Monterey.

    GUNDA - This astonishing documentary offers another way of looking at animals. Sublimely beautiful and profoundly moving, it offers you the opportunity to look - at animals, yes, but also at qualities that are often subordinated in narratively driven movies, at textures, shapes and light. It's outwardly simple: For most of its 93 minutes, the movie focuses on a sow and her piglets. In a short section we roam with chickens, including an impressively agile one-legged bird. In another, cows gallop into a misty field to graze, an interlude of pastoral dreaminess that invokes other representations - in novels and landscape paintings - yet is itself visually transfixing.

    u p c o m i n g   f i l m s
    MORTAL KOMBAT Apr 22 Reading
    WRATH OF MAN Apr 29 Readings
    LAND Apr 29 Penthouse
    FIRST COW Apr 29 Lighthouse
    JAMES AND ISEY May 06 Penthouse
    JUNE AGAIN May 06 Lighthouse
    SPIRAL: FROM THE BOOK OF SAW May 13 Readings
    THOSE WHO WISH ME DEAD May 13 Readings
    LITIGANTE May 13 Lighthouse
    FINDING YOU May 13 Penthouse
    A QUIET PLACE: PART 2 May 27 Readings
    BLACK WIDOW Jul 08 Readings
    THE KING'S MAN Aug 20 Lighthouse
    NO TIME TO DIE Oct 08 Readings


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    Classic and contemporary cinema from around the world, from NZ's only non-profit network of film exhibition