New Zealand’s cinematic history boasts its incredible natural landscapes and wildlife – some of it’s best are recognised worldwide with well-known faces like Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Orlando Bloom and Elijah Wood. So, here’s what to watch on a trip to NZ.
It’s not hard to guess the first 6…
1. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring 2001 (Rated 8.8/10 on IMDb)
“The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring is a 2001 epic high fantasy film directed by Peter Jackson based on the first volume of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. Set in Middle-earth, the story tells of the Dark Lord Sauron, who is seeking the One Ring. The Ring has found its way to the young hobbit Frodo Baggins. The fate of Middle-earth hangs in the balance as Frodo and eight companions begin their journey to Mount Doom – the only place where the Ring can be destroyed.”
2. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers 2002 (Rated 8.8/10 on IMDb)
Continuing the plot of The Fellowship of the Ring, Sam and Frodo continue to Mount Doom where they meet Gollum, while the others begin fighting at the Battle of Helm’s Deep before planning an attack on Isengard.
3. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 2003 (Rated 8.9/10 on IMDb)
The last of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, this film brings all of the plots together – do Sam and Frodo get to Mount Doom? Who claims the throne of Gondor?
4. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey 2012 (Rated 8/10 on IMDb)
This story is set in Middle Earth, sixty years before the The Lord of the Rings trilogies, around the adventurous tale of Bilbo Baggins – Frodo’s “uncle”.
“A reluctant hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, sets out to the Lonely Mountain with a spirited group of dwarves to reclaim their mountain home – and the gold within it – from the dragon Smaug.”
5. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug 2013 (Rated 8/10 on IMDb)
“The dwarves, along with Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf the Grey, continue their quest to reclaim Erebor, their homeland, from Smaug. Bilbo Baggins is in possession of a mysterious and magical ring.”
6. The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies 2014 (Rated 7.6/10 on IMDb)
“Bilbo and Company are forced to engage in a war against an array of combatants and keep the Lonely Mountain from falling into the hands of a rising darkness.”
7. Hunt for the Wilderpeople 2016 (Rated 8.4/10 on IMDb)
Based on ‘Wild Pork and Watercress,’ Barry Crump’s book, this film is about a juvenile foster child who is left in the care of an odd Kiwi couple who live in the wild of the New Zealand bush. Starring Sam Neil (who I will forever love from Jurassic Park) and the hilarious Julian Dennison who I believe was undiscovered before this movie. After an odd turn of events the pair take off to live in the “magestical” bush and become wanted DOA (but mostly A).
8. King Kong 2005 (Rated 7.3/10 on IMDb)
A world known tale, King Kong is about a movie producer that takes his crew to the mysterious Skull Island during filming, only to discover Kong, a giant ape who becomes quickly smitten on one of the actresses.
9. Whale Rider 2002 (Rated 7.7/10 on IMDb)
Based on the novel by Witi Ihimaera, this award winning film is a “contemporary story of love, rejection and triumph as a young Maori girl fights to fulfil a destiny her grandfather refuses to recognise.”
10.The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe 2005 (Rated 6.9/10 on IMDb)
“Based on The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, from C. S. Lewis’s, The Chronicles of Narnia” this film is about four children who find themselves transported into the world of Narnia after walking through an old wardrobe. Here they discover their destiny with the help of some magical creatures including a mystical Lion.
Over to you, what would you watch while in New Zealand?