Jul 12, 2022 Metro Arts
I write to you from the blissful silence of pre-child waking. Long may this last. It is, of course, school holidays. Those with child-free lives enjoy less traffic as you keep on for the next two weeks. For those of us on the other side (and who haven’t masterfully scheduled a winter getaway) kia kaha!
I do enjoy a school holiday art gallery trip, though (once you temper your own expectations to actually look at the art). There’s usually a hot chocolate bribe, but we make it through. I will definitely take the kids to see Emily Karaka’s show at Te Uru these holidays. If that’s not quite your thing though, Auckland Museum has a bunch of kid-friendly activities including Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo, a kind of dinosaur theatre show specially for the school holidays, they also have a couple of quiet shows for those with sensory needs or who prefer it that way. Next week, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki will open their new Art Lab, Mix the Rainbow: Colour and Shape in their Creating Learning Centre. And also my kids highly recommend the new Minions movie. Whatever you do, I wish you all luck and see you on the other side.
We are giving away a double pass to Safety in Numbers which opens tonight at Q Theatre. Director Leo Gene Peters describes the show as “inspired by everything we love about murder mysteries. All the twists and turns, all the tropes and the characters, the surprise endings, the betrayals and the witty detective solving this immense puzzle — all with a very contemporary twist. It’s an extremely playful and joyous celebration that dips into actually being scary and then leaps back into the ridiculous.” If you would like to win a double pass to Wednesday night, email us by midday today telling us who you want to take with you. The winner will be drawn then.
Also Also: this is the last week to express your interest in the Arts Editor role. Details here.
As always, if you have something you want to share hmu! email@example.com.
I recommend picking up a copy of Māori Moving Image. Never judge a book by its cover, but this use of Nova Paul’s work is pretty great. Including contributions by Maree Mills, Melanie Oliver, Bridget Reweti, Ariana Tikao, Nina Tonga, and Matariki Williams, the book also holds a number of interviews with senior Māori moving image artists. A treasure for your bookshelf!
I’m planning to make my way through Still Here today, a four part docu-series which celebrates the Pasifika community in inner-city Auckland. I spoke with the mind behind the show Litia Tuiburelevu and a number of families still in the inner-city in our last issue of Metro (which btw I also recommend if you haven’t read it already).
Also I recommend checking out the new Checks Downtown collaboration with artist Claudia Kogachi which is releasing this Thursday. The collab is a three-piece clothing capsule, including a Mohair Jumper with knitted graphic, Hooded Sweatshirt, and T-shirt all featuring Claudia’s original artwork. The collaboration is releasing Thursday 14/7 at 11am with all items available in-store at Checks 84 Pitt Street Flagship store and online here.
NZIFF Metro Picks
The New Zealand International Film Festival just recently announced their full programme. The Metro team put their heads together and present to you our top 5 picks for this year’s festival.
Decision to Leave
Metro is over the moon to be presenting Decision To Leave, the latest feature from the consistently fantastic, if occasionally grim South Korean director Park Chan-wook (The Handmaiden, The Little Drummer Girl, Oldboy). From what we can tell the plot seems to be quite Basic-Instincty — a murder mystery with a troubled detective investigating a murder and becoming ensorcelled by the man’s widow, who is also the prime suspect in the case. While Decision to Leave is reportedly lacking the innovative spirit of Park’s earlier work, his mastery of image making and narrative manipulation on the film were still enough to earn him the Best Director award at the Cannes Film Festival this year. Go see! (pictured)
Described in Vulture as “a mission statement by way of a musical, and its defining image is a middle finger taking up the whole lens”, Neptune Frost had us at the description “Afro-futurist science-fiction musical.” How cool! Directed by Saul Williams and Anisia Uzeyman, the film is set in Burundi and follows Matalusa a young miner, who flees after killing his brother, for an encampment of technocentric revolutionaries. In the encampment, Matalusa meets Neptune, a gender fluid character who is played by two actors. Packed full of bold costumes and special effects, it’s too intriguing to not see.
The house at 11 Rua Rd has seen a lot. Kāinga is an anthology film that brings together eight Asian filmmakers to explore the stories of people trying to make Aotearoa home, from a young Korean girl’s confusion with strangers nosing through her house, to an Indian daughter trying to reconnect with her father. It’s shot much in the same way as the production team’s previous films in the series, Waru and Vai, with each slice-of-life segment playing out in just one take — plus, like Waru and Vai, Kāinga’s diversity of directors and writers aim to represent the many different diasporic Asian communities in New Zealand.
Flux Gourmet is Peter Strickland’s newest film, the director who last made an appearance at NZIFF with In Fabric , a very weird but very stylish horror comedy about a red dress. Flux Gourmet seems to have the same funny-horror DNA, but this time set in a pseudo culinary school and populated by a group of experimental artists that engage in “sonic catering”, a process meant to extract disturbing sounds from food. Again, expect very weird, and probably a lot of scenes which make fun of performance artists – all our favourite things. The film stars Asa Butterfield (Sex Education) and Gwendoline Christie (Game of Thrones).
The flip-side of the truism “never meet your heroes” is “always read/watch a book/film where your former heroes tear themselves apart with astonishing candour”. Two of my heroes as a kid were Michael Jordan and Andre Agassi. A couple of years ago, the Michael Jordan sanctioned (and co-produced) documentary The Last Dance was a fun watch but was essentially a ten-hour ad for Michael Jordan (and Nike). Andre Agassi’s 2009 autobiography Open was the opposite, going surprisingly deep into his psychological problems, his methamphetamine use and, even more controversially, his hairpiece. Hopefully, McEnroe, Barney Douglas’s new documentary on (and with) John McEnroe, the foul-mouthed tennis star of the late-70s and early-80s, is more Andre than Michael. There’s got to be something interesting going on behind all that racquet-smashing, right?
Month of July
It’s come to our attention
12 July — 16 July, 8pm
Across Auckland city
14 July — 31 July
Takurua — Nafanua, War Goddess by Tala Pasifika Productions
Hunua Room, Aotea – Te Pokapū | Aotea Centre
14 July — 23 July
Scattergun: After the death of Rūaumoko
28 July — 30 July, 6.30pm
NZSA Region Roadshow Auckland
AUT Southern Campus
5 August — 3 September
Design Lives HERE
25 August, 6pm $30