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Speaker: Why not a New Zealand Film Month?

24 Responses

  • R James G Gates,

    Firstly, I think both ideas are great, and also that someone is so keen to get local filmmakers onto the big screen. It seems like such an impossibility for most filmmakers because the powerful feeling you mentioned, that one experiences when they see a movie on the big screen, is thought to be only achieved through accessing power by way of money and convention. One has to constantly 'get approval' before they can even begin to begin to begin. Of all the arts in this country I have a feeling that we have an unnecessary feeling of the divine when it comes to film which is clearly a disappointment when the divine often turns out be less than. One needn't constantly pray and flagellate to end up with paradise in the darkness of the cinema.

    The reason I like both ideas is because they implicitly imply that filmmakers can just make films and then be judged on their merits later. And this is especially true in terms of production, where there has been a shift that filmmakers should take advantage of, which is that making films is much cheaper. Why should being in the film business necessarily mean climbing endless screenwriting ladders and jumping through production hoops just to get a bunch of money?

    Both of these ideas would obviously help the exhibition end of things which in turn would no doubt help with distribution if the film is good. Now someone's throwing money at films that have actually been made rather than at treatments or drafts.

    I guess I like idea 1 more because it involves a year 'round opportunity for local filmmakers to show their films. But I dunno, idea 2 is also good because, unlike NZ Music Month, which I'm not such a fan of, a concentration of NZ films in a month could actually be a big deal not just for filmmakers but local film goers too...it could have a festival feeling about it!

    Auckland • Since Sep 2008 • 8 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    A New Zealand Film Festival would be a good idea.

    A festival of New Zealand films, that is. Give people something to celebrate, make them feel good. Carnivalise it. And if it works the first year, try it the second.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I'd like to see some of the short films that NZers seem to be so good at producing. I wish the cinemas that I go to would be better at putting a four or five minute short on as pre-movie entertainment as they used to do when I was a kid.

    I guess there are commercial reasons for not doing that.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • MikeE,

    I love it how the left's answer to creating a thriving film industry is compulsion rather than creating decent films...

    Washington DC • Since Nov 2006 • 138 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    What a fantastic idea, Ant. I'm particularly enamored of NZ docos. Sure, you can go and see them at the Film Festival, but really? I don't often make it to any of those films. If there were a NZ movie month, I would definitely make the effort.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3136 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I love it how the left's answer to creating a thriving film industry is compulsion rather than creating decent films...

    I love how libertarians just plug in their boilerplate response to every argument, to save the bother of knowing what they're talking about ;-)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22834 posts Report Reply

  • R James G Gates,

    @Mike E:

    I love it too... Just one thing: what the hell are you on about?

    If you're answer is to just make "decent films" then maybe you'd like to elaborate on what a decent film is, Mr Pauline Kael.

    Auckland • Since Sep 2008 • 8 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I love how libertarians just plug in their boilerplate response to every argument, to save the bother of knowing what they're talking about ;-)

    It's a "one screwup fits all" kind of theory.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • tim,

    Back on topic, the submissions for the NZFC review are available for reading here:
    http://www.mch.govt.nz/projects/culture/nzfc-review.html

    Wellington • Since Sep 2009 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • Newsprint,

    IANAL(ibertarian) but I loathe (and dread) NZ Music Month...

    Wellington • Since Mar 2008 • 42 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    IANAL(ibertarian) but I loathe (and dread) NZ Music Month...

    Is it not sufficiently to simply, say, ignore it?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22834 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    A month seems grandiose. How 'bout an afternoon... ?

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2109 posts Report Reply

  • Andre,

    Why not have a NZ Film Month on TV instead of at the cinemas? Why don't Sky, Mediaworks or TVNZ have a NZ film channel? Wouldn't this get a higher viewership and return similar cultural benefits to Maori TV? John Davies at the Academy also runs Arkles Entertainment (NZ's largest independent movie distribution company) and he is a champion of local films. I imagine that John is running lots of kiwi films without getting a financial return and wonder whether the big chains would be willing to follow suit without his commitment to the local industry.

    New Zealand • Since May 2009 • 365 posts Report Reply

  • Jim Cathcart,

    Well I'm a libertarian and I don't know shit, but I would love to have Gregory King's films available online because I like the guy as a person and artist (and I don't know when and where I could ever get the opportunity to see his work living outside NZ). Also, anyone with an interest in digital film would realize that digital content can be delivered to projectors and digital displays, so the argument about display size is redundant.

    As for NZ film festivals, I'm aware of two that have been shown in Japan and Korea. I think that Gin Slingers Inc. (Dept of Foreign Affairs) is involved so I'm unsure of how the content is selected.

    I think Andre's idea of a NZ Film Month is excellent (but probably too excellent to be conceived and executed by TVNZ). There's no reason why it couldn't be run concurrently at cinemas throughout NZ.

    Since Nov 2006 • 228 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    I love it how the left's answer to creating a thriving film industry is compulsion rather than creating decent films...

    This reminds me of the musings of a young Act supporter on nzmusic.com some years back - he disapproved of NZ On Air funding because it should be up to the market to choose which music was sufficiently deserving of success. Then he ranted at length about how much he hated Brooke Fraser, Dave Dobbyn and Elemenop.

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 533 posts Report Reply

  • Simone Hindin,

    Why is it an either or? NZ Book Month is creeping up (October) and is promoted by publishers, bookshops and libraries. NZ Music Month is pretty much the same story. Personally I rarely get to the movies but would enjoy seeing more stuff on TV or available online. Video (as in stuff you watch) seems to be the 'poor cousin' when one looks at what libraries are collecting too (having just had a quick squint at Christchurch and National Library catalogues).

    Christchurch • Since Mar 2009 • 6 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    I'd go an NZ film month, even if it was on TV (I'd prefer an ad free Sky hosting to free to air though).

    BTW, why is the Price of Milk not available like, anywhere? It got decent reviews at the time, so it can't have totally sucked.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2075 posts Report Reply

  • Andre,

    Maybe Anthony McCarten doesn't want the Price of Milk distributed too widely unless it goes all "Ladies Night" on him and ends up as "The Full Monty". That was the most disgusting rip-off of a NZ cultural icon since Richard Pearse, The Finns and Baigent's the Holy Blood and the Goly Grail (the Da Vinci Code) BTW...

    New Zealand • Since May 2009 • 365 posts Report Reply

  • Andre,

    Holy Grail sorry

    New Zealand • Since May 2009 • 365 posts Report Reply

  • tim,

    What does Anthony McCarten have to do with Harry Sinclair's film The Price of Milk?

    FWIW The Price of Milk is available to rent from Aro St video in Wellington on DVD - its an american release so NTSC but is readily available.... (its one of my favorite NZ films too!)

    Wellington • Since Sep 2009 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • tim,

    Seems to me a NZ Film month shouldn't be in any one format; it could be in cinemas, on multiple TV channels, online & out in the real world simultaneously.... And having a significant online presence means it transcends our own borders.... Why not put lots of those NZ short films we have all funded on vimeo & youtube for the month? (at least all the back catalog) And let the TV channels screen whatever NZ films they have rights for and/or want to gain rights for.... And the multiplexes could be supportive by at least dedicating one of their screens to NZ films for the month....

    Wellington • Since Sep 2009 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • Andre,

    ahhh my mistake...

    New Zealand • Since May 2009 • 365 posts Report Reply

  • Dan Slevin,

    Last night (for the purposes of reviewing - I see these things so you don't have to) I spent several hours at Readings in Wellington watching Dance Flick and I Love You, Beth Cooper and it occurred to me that if we're going to go to the trouble of making screens available for American shi!t we could just as easily make them available for our own.

    Wellington, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 95 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    These are ideas I would support. My experience is that many of my students don't share my loyalty to NZ films but that is no reason to keep trying, to add something local spice to their usual diet of dumb popcorn movies.
    I think we need more on film culture on TV too. I did a pitch to the SPADA 'The Big Pitch' competition late last year ("Saturday Night At the Movies") and people seemed to like it. For some there, it seemed to have some traction (ie I had an interested producer, with a possible broadcaster) but it seems to have fizzled..

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

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