Friday, 31 May 2019



Film: Call Me Intern

The 14th annual Documentary Edge International Film Festival (Doc Edge) officially opened last night with Assholes: A Theory at Q Theatre. The festival runs in Auckland until 9th June, before heading to Wellington (13th – 23rd June) with a fantastic selection of inspiring and poignant documentaries. This evening at The Civic’s stunning Wintergarden, Doc Edge celebrated documentary excellence alongside local and international filmmakers as they announced the 2019 award winners.

Doc Edge is an Oscar-qualifying film festival and the winner of the Best NZ Short, NZ Feature, International Short and International Feature all qualify for consideration for the 2020 Academy Awards.

Call Me Intern, by filmmakers Leo David Hyde and Nathalie Berger took out Best NZ Feature and Best NZ Editing. The documentary gives a voice to the growing movement for intern rights across the globe. Another kiwi film, Camino Skies by filmmakers Fergus Grady and Noel Smyth also received two awards, for Best NZ Director and Best NZ Emerging Filmmaker, with their inspiring documentary following six strangers from NZ and Australia as they hope to overcome personal and physical trauma by taking on the Camino de Santiago walk.

Taking out the award for Best International Feature is Midnight Traveler, with the judges calling it “an unwaveringly brave and intensely urgent film”. The director Hassan Fazili was both filmmaker and protagonist, sharing an intimate insight into the treacherous journey of his refugee family fleeing Afghanistan, capturing moments of familial love, tension and humour amidst the hardship.

Yang Sun and S. Leo Chiang won the Best International Director award for their film Our Time Machine. The documentary tells the story of a father and son as they confront their mortality through a visually stunning and haunting time-travel adventure.

Full list of Doc Edge Awards 2019 Winners: 
Images for winning documentaries available here.

New Zealand Competition – Feature Documentary
Best New Zealand Feature: Call Me Intern – Cash prize of $8,000 from NZ On Air
Special Mention: Marks of Mana
Best New Zealand Director: Fergus Grady & Noel Smyth – Camino Skies
Best New Zealand Emerging Filmmaker:  Fergus Grady & Noel Smyth – Camino Skies - Cash prize of $1,000 from Department of Post
Best New Zealand Editing: Call Me Intern
Best New Zealand Cinematography: Marks of Mana

New Zealand Competition – Short Documentary
Best New Zealand Short: Humans - Cash prize of $2,000 from NZ On Air
Special Mention: The Breath Connection

International Competition – Feature Documentary
Best International Feature: Midnight Traveler  - Cash prize of $3,500 from Panasonic
Special Mention: On Her Shoulders
Special Mention: Ghost Fleet
Best International Director: S. Leo Chiang & Yang Sun – Our Time Machine

International Competition – Short Documentary
Best Short: Beneath the Ink - Cash prize of $1,500 from Panasonic
Special Mention: Again/Noch Einmal

Doc Edge Superhero: Heddy Honigmann

Festival Category Winners 
All In The Family: Our Time Machine
Around the World in 8 Films: American Factory
Art Attack: Megalodemocrat: The Public Art of Rafael Lozano-Hemmer
Best of Fest: Midnight Traveler
Crime & Conspiracy: Sea of Shadows
Fearless: On Her Shoulders
Future Watch: Trust Machine: The Story of Blockchain


Rambo Last Blood teaser trailer

Rambo Last Blood teaser trailer

Almost four decades after he drew first blood, Sylvester Stallone is back as one of the greatest action heroes of all time, John Rambo. Now, Rambo must confront his past and unearth his ruthless combat skills to exact revenge in a final mission. A deadly journey of vengeance, RAMBO: LAST BLOOD marks the last chapter of the legendary series.

RAMBO: LAST BLOOD is directed by Adrian Grunberg and stars Sylvester Stallone, Paz Vega, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Adrianna Barraza, Yvette Monreal, Genie Kim aka Yenah Han, Joaquin Cosio, and Oscar Jaenada.

RAMBO: LAST BLOOD releases in New Zealand in theatres on September 19, 2019.

The Kitchen trailer

The Kitchen trailer

The gritty, female-driven mob drama “The Kitchen,” from New Line Cinema and BRON Creative, was written and directed by Andrea Berloff, who was nominated for an Oscar for the original screenplay for “Straight Outta Compton.”

“The Kitchen” stars Oscar nominee Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish, and Elisabeth Moss as three 1978 Hell’s Kitchen housewives whose mobster husbands are sent to prison by the FBI. Left with little but a sharp axe to grind, the ladies take the Irish mafia’s matters into their own hands—proving unexpectedly adept at everything from running the rackets to taking out the competition…literally.

THE KITCHEN also stars Domhnall Gleeson, James Badge Dale, Brian d’Arcy James, with Margo Martindale, Oscar winner Common, and Bill Camp; as well as Jeremy Bobb, E.J. Bonilla, Wayne Duvall, Annabella Sciorra, and Myk Watford.

THE KITCHEN releases in New Zealand cinemas on August 29, 2019.

On The Basis of Sex: DVD Review

On The Basis of Sex: DVD Review

Swathed in sincerity so tightly that it almost becomes claustrophobic, Mimi Leder's take on Ruth Bader Ginsberg is a film that wants us to embrace RBG rather than earning the right to do so.

In fact, compared to the recent doco RBG which detailed her life with both chutzpah and joe de vivre, On The Basis of Sex is lacking, even if it does choose to dwell mostly on the case which saw Ginsberg make her name.

On The Basis of Sex: Film Review

Starting back in 1956 with Ginsberg wide-eyed and eager to be entering Harvard, Leder's film wastes no time showing the obstacles that she faces from the get go. Whether it's being a woman in a sea of men as the opening shot details or watching as Ginsberg is asked to justify why she was able to take the place of a man, Leder's film is about stacking the obstacles in Ruth's path - and piling them high.

Equally, the health problems faced by her husband (played with ease by a smooth Hammer) simply serve to show Ginsberg's ferocity in the face of it - and her determination for her family. All of which Jones delivers with relative aplomb, even if the film follows a formulaic and occasionally borderline dull execution of the biopic.

Things are crystallised a little more when the movie comes to the Charles Moritz case for which Ginsberg made her name - and while the spark rises a little more here, as the fire comes out, the film's choice of course lends itself to speechifying rather than natural dialogue.

It's very much a case of the usual underdog tropes, and is perhaps underscored more by what's been learned in the RBG doco and what is currently happening in America, but On The Basis of Sex makes a good strong case for a TV movie, rather than a big screen outing. Sure, there's a solid take behind the camera, but there's scant flourishes which render this exciting or enticing, despite the good work delivered by both Jones and Hammer.

Thursday, 30 May 2019

Women's World Cup Update

Women's World Cup Update

Starting today, fans can play the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final as one of 22 Women’s National Teams in FIFA 19 via a free content update. 

Fans can play a custom match in Lyon Stadium that features authentic national team kits, crests, the official Women's World Cup Final match ball, stadium dressing, ad boards, and the iconic trophy.

The Women's World Cup Final is available to play now in Kick-Off mode on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC and Nintendo Switch. 


The Goldfinch trailer

The Goldfinch trailer

From Warner Bros. Pictures and Amazon Studios, “The Goldfinch” is the film adaptation of Donna Tartt’s globally acclaimed best-selling novel, which won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction.

Theodore “Theo” Decker was 13 years old when his mother was killed in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The tragedy changes the course of his life, sending him on a stirring odyssey of grief and guilt, reinvention and redemption, and even love. Through it all, he holds on to one tangible piece of hope from that terrible day...a painting of a tiny bird chained to its perch. The Goldfinch.

THE GOLDFINCH is directed by John Crowley and stars Ansel Elgort, Nicole Kidman, Oakes Fegley, Aneurin Barnard, Finn Wolfhard, Sarah Paulson, Luke Wilson, Jeffrey Wright, Ashleigh Cummings, Willa Fitzgerald, Aimee Laurence, Denis O’Hare and Boyd Gaines.

THE GOLDFINCH releases in New Zealand cinemas on September 26, 2019.

NZIFF Announces Guest Selector for Short Film Competition

NZIFF Announces Guest Selector for Short Film Competition

Jane Campion will be the Guest Selector for the New Zealand International Film Festival’s (NZIFF) only competition strand, the New Zealand’s Best short film competition.  

Six selected New Zealand shorts will premiere in Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin and Christchurch where audiences in Auckland and Wellington are encouraged to vote for their favourite short from Campion’s shortlist. Previous Guest Selectors have included Leon Narbey (2018), Gaylene Preston (2017), Lee Tamahori (2016), Christine Jeffs (2015), Andrew Adamson (2014), Alison Maclean (2013) and Roger Donaldson (2012).  

New Zealand director, producer and screenwriter Jane Campion is the only female director to receive the Palme d’Or at Cannes Film Festival (1993) and the second of four women ever to be nominated as Best Director at the Academy Awards (1994) for The Piano. Jane studied at the Australian Film Television and Radio School and her first short film, Peel (1982), won Best Short Film Palme d’Or in 1986 at the Cannes Film Festival. In 1989 Jane directed Sweetie, her first feature film, and in 1990 An Angel at My Table about New Zealand author Janet Frame. Subsequent to the multi-award-winning The Piano were, The Portrait of a Lady (1996); Holy Smoke (1999); In the Cut (2003);  Bright Star (NZIFF 2009) and the mystery thriller Top of the Lake (2012), a six-hour TV mini-series which Jane executive produced,  co-wrote and directed three episodes for the BBC and the Sundance Channel. Jane completed production on the second Top of the Lake series in 2017 (NZIFF 2017) which she created, co-wrote, directed two episodes and executive produced.  

91 submissions were received for the New Zealand’s Best competition this year with the programming team at NZIFF team shortlisting twelve films for Jane to consider. “It was moving and invigorating to watch the twelve shortlisted short films and experience their energy, raw talent and the occasional truly sophisticated achievement” says Jane Campion.  

This year’s New Zealand’s Best finalists will be eligible for four prizes. Madman Entertainment will again support the title award, the Madman Entertainment Best Short Film Award. The cash prize of $5,000 is donated by the Australasian distribution company. The winner will be chosen by a three-person jury appointed by NZIFF and Madman Entertainment.  

The Audience Choice Award will be selected by audience members who attend New Zealand’s Best screenings in Auckland and Wellington. Audience members will be invited to rank the finalists and the film that receives the highest rating will win a 25% share of the box office takings from the New Zealand's Best screenings in the four main centres. In 2018 this prize was $4,800. 

The Creative New Zealand’s Emerging Talent Award is a cash prize of $4,000 and recognizes a fresh voice: film-making that gives life to stories of those less often represented in film, or that speaks to new or existing audiences in different ways. The winner of this award will be selected by the jury. 

The Auckland Live Spirit of The Civic Award is a newly created award to be selected by the jury and has a $4,000 cash prize attached. 
NZIFF is run by a charitable trust and encourages lively interactions between films, filmmakers and New Zealand audiences in 13 towns and cities around the country. The full NZIFF programme will be available from Tuesday 25 June for Auckland, and Friday 28 June for Wellington. NZIFF starts in Auckland on 18 July and in Wellington from 26 July in 2019. 

Asterix: The Secret of the Magic Potion: Film Review

Asterix: The Secret of the Magic Potion: Film Review

Directors: Alexander Astier, Louis Clichy

The Asterix the Gaul comic books have a kind of timeless innocence to them.

Largely predicated on the adventures of the Gaul and his large chum Obelix's fight against the marauding Romans, the comics follow a relatively tight narrative edge.

Chiefly, Asterix and his team face insurmountable odds and the use of the Magic Potion helps to save the day.

In this latest CGI animated outing, there's a sense of the timelessness on show again, which is both to the film's advantage and also to its detriment.
Asterix: The Secret of the Magic Potion: Film Review

When druid Getafix injures himself collecting berries for the secret potion, he decides that it's time to appoint a successor to the magic ways and ensure the potion's mystery doesn't die with him.

So he packs up Asterix and Obelix into his quest - but before long, the Romans are taking advantage of their absence...

Asterix & The Secret of the Magic Potion is genial enough fare.

It gets by on its aforementioned timelessness and innocence more than anything. And while the animation's similar to the Peanuts movie, it's not startling enough to stand out as anything revolutionary.

That's not to detract from the film's overall desire to play it as family fare, which it does surprisingly well, but it does feel occasionally like some smarter edges could have been deployed for the benefit of the audience.

Voice work is solid enough, and the simple plot means the film skews younger than anything.

But in a day and age where animation is expected to deliver meta touches, to engage all ages, and to entertain in perpetuity, it may feel like it falls a little short. As a piece of family fare though, it can't be faulted, thanks to an energy of exuberance, an abundance of good will and an enthusiastic run-time which doesn't outstay its welcome.

XBox approach to PC gaming

XBox approach to PC gaming

We believe the player should be at the center of their gaming experience and be able to harness the unique benefits of the devices they choose to play on.
Nowhere is that belief more important than on the PC. As the creators of Windows, we have a unique responsibility to ensure we’re investing in experiences that benefit players everywhere, while respecting the PC community’s preference for an open, highly customizable platform.
XBox approach to PC gaming
We’ve not always lived up to our aspiration of keeping gamers at the center of everything we do when it comes to the experience they’ve had on Windows.
Today I’d like to share three steps we are taking to contribute to the thriving PC gaming ecosystem:
Introducing Xbox Game Pass Designed for PC Players
Two years ago, we launched Xbox Game Pass on Xbox One, and since then we’ve seen how valuable a curated library of high-quality games can be for players and game developers alike. It offers a great way to discover and play your next favorite game. We researched whether a similar opportunity exists for PC players and PC game developers, and we believe that it does. We also considered the importance of bringing something new and additive to the PC gaming ecosystem, and we believe that we can. So, we designed a service specifically for the needs of PC gamers and PC game developers. It’s called Xbox Game Pass, just like the original, but it’s a new experience that we are building together with the PC community.
Xbox Game Pass for PC will give players unlimited access to a curated library of over 100 high-quality PC games on Windows 10, from well-known PC game developers and publishers such as Bethesda, Deep Silver, Devolver Digital, Paradox Interactive, SEGA, and more. And just as we committed on the console, it is our intent to include new games from Xbox Game Studios in Xbox Game Pass for PC the same day as their global release, including titles from newly acquired studios like Obsidian and inXile. We’re working with over 75 developers and publishers to bring PC content to the service and we’ll ensure the library remains curated and full of great PC titles across a variety of genres, with new games added every month.
Xbox Game Pass for PC members will also receive discounts in the Microsoft Store on Windows of up to 20% on games currently in the library and up to 10% off related game DLC and add-ons.
We look forward to sharing more at E3, including the great games coming to the library, as well as more details on when and how you’ll experience the new Xbox Game Pass service for PC gamers.
More Choice in Where to Buy Xbox Game Studios Titles
Enabling gamers to play together, through cross-platform play and cross-network play across Windows 10 PCs and console, is vitally important. Building communities across all of those players, regardless of the store or platform they’ve chosen (console or PC), is also vitally important because it helps bring players together, allows games to find their largest audience and allows gaming to deliver its true potential of uniting people around the power of play.
With that in mind, our intent is to make our Xbox Game Studios PC games available in multiple stores, including our own Microsoft Store on Windows, at their launch. We believe you should have choice in where you buy your PC games.
In March, we announced that Halo: The Master Chief Collection will come to PC later this year, launching on Steam in addition to the Microsoft Store on Windows. We will continue to add to the more than 20 Xbox Game Studios titles on Steam, starting with Gears 5 and all Age of Empires I, II & III: Definitive Editions. We know millions of PC gamers trust Steam as a great source to buy PC games and we’ve heard the feedback that PC gamers would like choice. We also know that there are other stores on PC, and we are working to enable more choice in which store you can find our Xbox Game Studios titles in the future.
We want to bring players together to create a shared player community regardless of where they play, so it’s our intent that new Xbox Game Studios titles include features such as voice and text chat, LFG, friends lists and cross-play across PC and console. On Windows 10 you’ll find this functionality in the Xbox Game Bar, which we’ll continue to evolve and expand.
Supporting Win32 Games on Windows 10
We want creators to be inspired to bring their best content to Windows 10, and we want Windows 10 to be the place where gamers come to discover their next favorite PC game. We recognize that Win32 is the app format that game developers love to use and gamers love to play, so we are excited to share that we will be enabling full support for native Win32 games to the Microsoft Store on Windows. This will unlock more options for developers and gamers alike, allowing for the customization and control they’ve come to expect from the open Windows gaming ecosystem.
When I think about the role we play as a company to support and evolve gaming on Windows, it’s critical that we make decisions that reinforce the open nature of the PC, focusing on how best to unite players on all devices around the games they love. That philosophy will guide us as we introduce new ways to discover and play games on Windows.
These are just a few of our steps in a journey to contribute to gaming on Windows 10. We know that PC gamers want to see games, so I hope you’ll join us at our annual Xbox E3 2019 Briefing on Sunday, June 9 to hear more, including the amazing lineup of new games and offers coming to PC players.

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Wild Animal Kills Challenge in Red Dead Online Plus Head For The Hills Mode, Land of Opportunities Bonuses, Care Package and More

Wild Animal Kills Challenge in Red Dead Online Plus Head For The Hills Mode, Land of Opportunities Bonuses, Care Package and More 

Introducing the Wild Animal Kills Challenge and Head For The Hills Mode
Also This Week: A Land of Opportunities Bonuses, 2-Step Verification Gift and More

Prove your status as a big game hunter in the new Wild Animal Kills Challenge. Accept an invite to this new Free Roam Event to pit yourself against other sportsmen with weapons and offensive attacks against other players disabled – so the focus of this Free Roam Event is squarely on the hunt.

Points are awarded based on the size of the animal, with small animals worth one point, medium size worth two, and large animals worth three. As the challenge unfolds, prized and especially dangerous predators like wolves, cougars and bears will emerge… take them down for bonus points.

Also live today is Head For The Hills, a new Showdown Mode where players take turns making a last-ditch run across no-man's-land to their safe house, while opponents have only one objective: to hunt you down. Stake out the high ground, hide in the shadows or stalk your enemies out in the open, but don’t let them get to safety. We will also add two more new Showdown Modes over the next two weeks - stay tuned for details on Public Enemy and Sport of Kings coming in the weeks ahead.

Earn bonus Cash and Gold in certain missions from A Land of Opportunities. This week, new players will earn a bonus RDO$50 for completing the first mission, Honor Among Horse Thieves. Earn a bonus RDO$75 for completing Kill Them, Each and Every One; and a bonus 10 Gold Bars for completing Destroyed by Grief.

This week also brings a new Showdown Mode inspired care package for everyone, visit your Camp Lockbox or Post Office to pick up a gift of:

  • 5x Potent Miracle Tonic
  • 5x Potent Snake Oil
  • 5x Potent Health Cure
  • 5x Potent Bitters
  • 120x Express Revolver Ammo

Wheeler, Rawson and Co's latest clothing updates this week include the Flora Corseted Chemise and Paddon Shirt tops - along with limited supply of the Plaid CapRacoon Hat and Shaffer Chaps. You can also now feign outrage with the new How Dare You emote.

This week, we're also awarding the unique and exclusive tint of the Racoon Hat pictured above to anyone who has 2-Step Verification on their Social Club account, including those who enable it this week (who'll also receive 10 Gold Bars for Red Dead Online and GTA$500,000 in GTA Online).

To switch on 2-Step Verification for your Social Club account, go to

Join us for our very first Red Dead Online community live stream this Friday May 31, 5pm Eastern on the official Rockstar FacebookTwitch and YouTube channels. We’ll also be putting out a call on our Twitter tomorrow looking to round up a few community friends to Posse up with as we’ll be playing on both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. We’ll be getting into all sorts of rip roaring action from the latest update, from this week’s new Head for the Hills Showdown Mode to taking on Free Roam Missions and Posse Versus Challenges to some hands of Poker at the saloon and more. Look for more Red Dead Online and GTA Online live streams to be announced in the weeks and months ahead. Subscribe and follow for all our go-live notifications:

EA announces the launch date for Sea Of Solitude

EA announces the launch date for Sea Of Solitude


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Beautiful EA Originals Adventure Game by Jo-Mei Games Unfolds a Deeply Intimate Story of a Young Woman’s Emotional Journey to Overcome Loneliness

Today, Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) and visionary German studio Jo-Mei Games announced that the story-driven adventure game Sea of Solitude will be launching worldwide on July 5, 2019 via digital download on PlayStation®4, Xbox One and Origin™ for PC.Sea of Solitude is an emotional experience that takes players on a personal journey to overcome a young woman’s inner loneliness. Players must help Kay see below the surface and beyond, guiding her through a flooded city landscape in a deeply touching tale of darkness and light. As waters rise and fall to reflect her own state of mind, Kay will meet fantastical creatures and monsters, learn their stories and solve challenges to rid the world of tainted memories.

Marvel’s Jessica Jones Season 3 - Date Announce & First Look Images

Marvel’s Jessica Jones Season 3 - Date Announce & First Look Images

Image result for netflix logo


Netflix announces that the final season of Marvel’s Jessica Jones, the ground-breaking, award-winning series about a New York City private investigator with incredible strength will launch all 13 episodes globally on Friday, June 14.

About Season 3: When Jessica (Krysten Ritter) crosses paths with a highly intelligent psychopath, she and Trish (Rachael Taylor) must repair their fractured relationship and team up to take him down.  But a devastating loss reveals their conflicting ideas of heroism, and sets them on a collision course that will forever change them both.

The series is executive produced by showrunner Melissa Rosenberg (Dexter) and Jeph Loeb (Marvel’s Daredevil, Marvel's Jessica Jones, Marvel's Luke Cage) who also serves as Marvel’s Head of Television. Marvel’s Jessica Jones is produced by Marvel Television in association with ABC Studios for Netflix.

Season three cast also features Carrie-Anne Moss (The Matrix Trilogy), Eka Darville (Empire), Benjamin Walker (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter), Jeremy Bobb (Russian Doll), Sarita Choudhury (Homeland), Tiffany Mack (Hap and Leonard), Jessica Frances Dukes (The Good Wife), Aneesh Sheth (New Amsterdam) and  Rebecca DeMornay (The Hand that Rocks the Cradle).

Follow Marvel’s Jessica Jones on TwitterInstagram and Facebook

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