New Zealand International Film Festival Has Just Announced Its Impressive Full 2022 Lineup

After months of teaser announcements, NZIFF's full program is finally here — and film fans now have plenty to see.
Sarah Ward
Published on July 04, 2022

Movie lovers of Aotearoa, the film-watching version of Christmas is almost upon us — the Whānau Mārama: New Zealand International Film Festival, that is. Come Thursday, July 28, the nation's major cinema showcase will kick off its 2022 run in Auckland, before touring to 14 other cities and towns across August and September. And if you're wondering what'll be gracing the fest's big screens, all has now been revealed.

Over the past couple of months, NZIFF locked in its return dates and first seven titles, announced its first homegrown flicks and revealed some of its straight-from-Cannes selection. It set its opening night pick in selected cities — Muru, a response to the Tūhoe raids — too. But now the fest has gone one better, and there's plenty to see. With 70 feature length films and 32 short films on the bill, get ready to get comfy in a darkened room.

Newly announced highlights include documentary Fire of Love, about two French volcanologists, which'll open NZIFF everywhere except Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin — where Muru does the honours — plus David Cronenberg's Crimes of the Future, the iconic filmmaker's first feature since 2014's Maps to the Stars. Among the big-name selections, there's also Berlin Film Festival Golden Bear winner Alcarràs, a family drama from Spain; the Paul Mescal (Normal People)-starring Aftersun; and Marcel the Shell with Shoes On, the stop-motion comedy based on the shorts and books of the same name.

Elsewhere, standouts include Rubber and Deerskin director Quentin Dupieux's Incredible but True and Smoking Causes Coughing, because two weird and wonderful flicks from the French filmmaker are better than one; fellow French director Claire Denis reuniting with Juliette Binoche (High Life, Let the Sunshine In) on Both Sides of the Blade; Aubrey Plaza (Best Sellers)-led heist film Emily the Criminal; and Flux Gourmet, the new comedy from inimitable Berberian Sound StudioThe Duke of Burgundy and In Fabric filmmaker Peter Strickland.

The latest from freshly minted Oscar-winner Jessica Chastain, The Forgiven, also sits alongside Dual, the Aaron Paul (Westworld) and Karen Gillan (Avengers: Endgame)-starring new deadpan comedy by The Art of Self-Defense's Riley Stearns — while Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon from A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night's Ana Lily Amirpour and Where Is Anne Frank? by Waltz with Bashir director Ari Folman are also on the bill.

Clearly, the list goes on. Similarly on the program: supernatural witch flick You Won't Be Alone, which stars Noomi Rapace (Lamb); Spanish horror Piggy, a Sundance hit; the Rebecca Hall (The Night House)-starring Resurrection; Danish holiday-from-hell thriller Speak No Evil; and documentary Clean, about Melbourne 'trauma cleaner' Sandra Pankhurst.

Homegrown films joining the lineup include doco Gloriavale, which explores the Gloriavale Christian Community; Shut Eye, marking the feature debut of writer/director Tom Levesque; and Ka Pō, about methamphetamine addiction in Polynesian

Don't say you don't have anything to watch for the next few months, obviously.

The Whānau Mārama: New Zealand International Film Festival will open in Auckland on Thursday, July 28, then tour to 14 other cities and towns across August and September. For more information and to buy tickets, head to the festival website.

Published on July 04, 2022 by Sarah Ward
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