The Wellington Film Guide

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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   2 6   M A Y  -
  W E D N E S D A Y   1   J U N E   2 0 2 2  

t h e   f i l m s

n e w s   c l i p s

  • The Covid alert level in the whole country remains at Orange. Cinemas are no longer limited in their seating requirements. Mask wearing is strongly encouraged in indoor environments.

  • The Wellington Film Society, 30 May, 6.15pm at the Embassy, THE LAST BLACK MAN IN SAN FRANCISCO (Joe Talbot, USA 2019). A gorgeous, inventive meditation on art, architecture, black culture and gentrification in California's Bay Area. Jimmie dreams of reclaiming the beautiful late 19th century home his grandfather built in the heart of the city, before harder times and changing demographics forced his family out. He and best friend scheme to make this happen while Jimmie annoys the sitting tenants with guerrilla gardening on the beloved Fillmore house. A skateboarder and dreamy, suit-wearing playwright, the pair are at odds with the tough guys around the neighbourhood, and spend their time working to deliver Jimmie's dream. Occasionally, a film comes around that thrillingly invents its own cinematic rhythms, perfectly suited to its subject. This is such a film and it's one to make your head sing and heart soar. - Tricia Tuttle, London Film Festival 2019.
  • Anyone can join the Film Society at any time on line.

  • Film Festivals to note:
  • Resene Architecture and Design Film Festival 2022 19 May - 5 June, Embassy, Lighthouse Cuba and Petone. On now. Check the website for details.
  • French Film Festival Aotearoa 2022 7 - 26 June, Embassy, Penthouse, Lighthouse. Twenty-one of the best recent films from France. Programmes out now, or check the website. Bookings are open.
  • NZ International Film Festival 4 - 14 August, Embassy, Roxy and Lighthouse Cuba only - in a reduced version for 2022.
  • 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.

    For comments and movie news, contact the Cinemaster at

    s t a r t s   t h i s   w e e k!

    TOP GUN: MAVERICK - Director Joseph Kosinski revels in the sonic-boom rush of the many flight scenes, sending his jets swooping and spinning in impossible, equilibrium-rattling arcs. On the ground, too, his camera caresses every object in its view, almost as if he's making a rippling ad for America itself: The movie still belongs in almost every scene to Tom Cruise. At this point in his career, he's not really playing characters so much as variations on a theme - and in the air up there, he stands alone. Also Penthouse, Empire, Roxy, Lighthouse, Readings, Monterey, Coastlands and Shoreline.

    HOW TO PLEASE A WOMAN - Bursting with ineffable charm, this is one of those films that comes along so rarely - a witty and heartfelt comedy, beautifully executed and surprisingly honest. The setup is delicious, and director Renee Webster (who also wrote the film) doesn't rush things. The central concept at the heart of the film is the question of what brings women pleasure, and the film's clunky title is in itself part of the joke. Also Empire, Lighthouse, Monterey, Reading Porirua and Shoreline.

    MOTHERING SUNDAY - This deft, shimmeringly sensual adaptation of the novel by Graham Swift elegantly weaves together multiple timelines. It's a richly detailed mosaic of a movie which pays as much attention to emotional authenticity - a dull ache of grief which is the aftermath of the First World War and a smouldering yearning between the two lovers - as it does to the story itself.

    TUESDAY CLUB - No reviews in English. The folowing comments are from a Google Translate of the Swedish linked review: A romantic comedy of simple cut that preaches the value of thinking on their life choices before it's too late. Good entertainment for a slightly more mature audience.

    BOB'S BURGERS MOVIE - This debut feature has the same feel of the longrunning TV show, but at four times the length. Loren Bouchard's script, co-written with Jim Dauterive and Nora Smith, isn't going to bend the characters' reality. Nothing in here makes an argument to be on the big screen. But it's darned delightful, like a fizzy soda on a hot day. Also Monterey and Reading Porirua.

    u p c o m i n g   f i l m s
    PIL'S ADVENTURES Jun 02 Readings
    MOTHERING SUNDAY Jun 02 Penthouse
    DIANA'S WEDDING Jun 02 Lighthouse
    Jun 02 Penthouse
    Jun 09 Penthouse
    LIGHTYEAR Jun 16 Readings
    ELVIS Jun 23 Penthouse
    WHINA Jun 23 Penthouse
    MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU Jun 30 Readings


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