TŪMANAKO / HOPE

Loading Docs 2021

The Scam

An international scam sends a small-town pensioner around the world and towards a life behind bars.

The promise of riches lures an elderly man into leaving his small town for a trip around the world. This stranger-than-fiction tale recounts every twist and turn, from imprisonment on foreign soil to the road to freedom. But does he understand how close he came to catastrophe?

Dir: Oliver Dawe | Prod: Amanda Jenkins

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Night Ride

Why does a mother-of-ten still return to the old family house every night to feed stray cats?

In a once bustling small town, a 66-year-old mother has developed an unusual night ritual of returning to her old home to care for street cats. As her son recounts the first time he realised it was an obsession with larger implications for him and his siblings, he wants to find out why.

Dir: Todd Karehana | Prod: Samantha Dutton

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Fifty Percent

With a 50% chance of inheriting a fatal disease, is it better to know your future or live in the moment?

Lillian Hanly has a 50/50 chance of inheriting Huntington’s, a neuro-degenerative disease. With a number of her family testing positive for the gene, and her mother already affected by it, she must come to a decision. Get tested now or continue to live on in the unknown.

Dir: Lillian Hanly | Prod: Sara Shirazi

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The Old Place

A young wāhine Māori reconnects with her late Koro, Hone Tuwhare, through their shared gift of poetry.

An 18-year-old poet, part of spoken word group Ngā Hinepūkōrero, has a legacy left for her by her great-grandfather, Hone Tuwhare. A national treasure whose poetry spanned over 40 years, Hone passed when Manaia was just six, leaving her with memories frozen in photographs.

Dir: Matariki Bennett | Prod: Rachel Fawcett

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When Nobody Was Looking

A Pākehā entomologist takes on the 1970s New Zealand government, calling out institutional racism.

In 1970s Aotearoa, Dr. Oliver Sutherland took on the New Zealand government. What drove a scientist who specialised in grass grubs to become a leading fighter for justice on abuse and racism? And how has his advocacy had a lasting impact on the disproportionately Māori and Pasifika victims?

Dir: Alex Sutherland | Prod: Bianca Delalic

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Only Human

An animated short film that asks the question: Is it possible to break up with your family?

They say you can’t choose your family, but can you overcome irrenconcilable differences with those you love the most? The youngest daughter of an unconventional Filipino family explores the complexities of communicating across countries, generations and the internet.

Dir: Mia Maramara | Prod: Kate Goodwin

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The Kingdom

In prison, a Mongrel Mob president has an epiphany; he must redefine gang culture.

With a new calling to transform gang life, Sonny Fatupaito found a gun pointed at his head. Why did the Mongrel Mob leader put his life on the line to change gang culture and create a new Kingdom?

Dir: Corinna Hunziker | Prod: Justin John Scott/Te Anga Nathan

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The Crested Weedfish

Marine scientists embark on an underwater adventure to save a rarely-seen fish in its severely threatened home.

Northland reefs are under threat. In a bold attempt to make change, two marine ecologists and photographers embark on an expedition to raise awareness of a mysterious native fish. They want to capture a powerful photo of the elusive Crested Weedfish before it’s too late.

Dir: Matt Silcock/Aart van Dijk | Prod: Zoe-Rose Herbert

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