Sunday, 13 November 2016

Review - Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Ricky Baker is considered a problem. He's got a list of offences that are as impressive as they are sad for a 12-year-old.

He's packed off to a foster family in the middle of nowhere, and that's where the fun begins.

His foster mother Bella (Rima Te Wiata) is loving and patient with Ricky, whereas - in contrast - her husband Hec (Sam Neill) is grumpy and standoffish with Ricky.

However, when Bella dies, Hec and Ricky find themselves having to get along. They're also on the run in the wilds of New Zealand's backcountry thanks to a misunderstanding with a bunch of weekend warriors.

I missed this at the movies somehow, but picked it up on DVD and I'm so glad I did. It's a very New Zealand story, and the landscape is almost a third star of the film along with Sam Neill and newcomer Julian Dennison as Ricky.

Hec and Ricky are hilarious together and the story itself is extremely heartfelt. It's a feel-good movie from start to finish (although warning for animal lovers, there is a pet death in there).

Under the steady hand of Kiwi director Taika Waitit, Wilderpeople is an absolute must-see.

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