Jojo Rabbit dir. Taika Waititi (2019) Director Taika Waititi walks a fine line between flippancy and dark absurdism, concocting from the final days of Nazi Germany a tragicomic yet rather moving story of childhood innocence and fanatical indoctrination. Outrageously over-the-top but kept in check by some nuanced acting.
Hunt for the Wilderpeople dir. Taika Waititi (2016) A distinct, refreshingly understated vein of Kiwi humour runs through this New Zealand coming of age (at all ages) film. Sam Neil and newcomer Julian Dennison excel, playing the withdrawn farmer and troubled foster child who unwittingly set off an international manhunt.
What we do in the Shadows dir. Jemaine Clement & Taika Waititi (2014) Three flat-sharing vampires in modern-day Wellington face upheaval to their already incongruous lives when one of their victims is accidentally turned and joins the group. This New Zealand comedy has its Conchords-esque moments but the mockumentary format feels more limiting than enhancing.