NZIFF 2011: Pre-Programme Announcements

The 2011 New Zealand International Film Festivals, which begin in Auckland on July 14, won’t be releasing their full programme until later this month, but they’ve made a number of announcements already. Full details on all of the films announced thus far are on the festival’s website, but here are the ones I’m really looking forward to:

Submarine

Richard Ayoade (the guy who plays Moss in The I.T. Crowd) has made a coming-of-age movie set in Swansea that looks equal parts Hal Ashby and Wes Anderson. Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys provides the film’s music. Here’s Vadim Rizov’s review from GreenCine Daily:

With his Bud Cort haircut and morbid sensibility, Oliver Tate (Craig Roberts) is too smart for Swansea, Wales, an industrial city mired in some seriously mid-80s Thatcherite doldrums. The trouble with Oliver is that he knows he’s clever, which could justify anything: surreptitiously monitoring his parents’ sex life, taunting an overweight girl to make local cutie Jordana (Yasmin Paige) notice him as a real livewire, or trying to trash the house of downhill neighbor Graham Purvis (Paddy Considine) who may be having an affair with mom (Sally Hawkins).

Here’s the British trailer:

and here’s the US trailer:

Snowtown

At the opposite end of the scale is Australian director Justin Kurtzel’s début feature, which depicts the “bodies-in-barrels” murders that took place in the titular town in South Australia between 1992 and 1999:

Meek’s Cutoff

Kelly Reichardt’s new film after Old Joy and Wendy and Lucy, starring Michelle Williams as one of a group of pioneers on the Oregon Trail in 1845:

Bobby Fischer Against the World

A portrait of chess master Bobby Fischer and the game he played against Gary Kasparov in 1972:

Norwegian Wood

An adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s novel:

The Trip

Comedians Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon star in this feature-length condensation of Michael Winterbottom’s BBC series as thinly-veiled versions of themselves on a restaurant tour of the Lake District:

Taxi Driver

The 35th anniversary restoration:

The 2011 NZIFF starts in Auckland on July 14 before travelling around the country. Look out for the programme around town and online later this month, and come back to this site for full coverage of the festival from early July.

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