It's the apocalypse! The world has been decimated by the oil wars, leaving small settlements of survivors to fend off gangs of roaming outlaws. When Corlie (Annie McEnroe) escapes the clutches of her father, the evil Colonel Straker (James Wainwright), she is rescued by the reclusive Hunter (Michael Beck) and taken in by a small democratic commune. But Straker wants his daughter back, and he's coming for her in his Battletruck!
In an attempt to revise their opinions on director Tony Williams (Solo), Hayden and L.J. take a slight detour to look at the obscure Australian horror movie Next of Kin. The story of a young woman who takes over the running of a rural nursing home after her mother's death, Next of Kin began life as a local Kiwi production, but gradually morphed into an Aussie film for various financial reasons. Does it hold up better than Solo did?
Ronald Hugh Morrieson's 'The Scarecrow' has one of the most memorable opening lines in NZ literature, setting a tone that could prove difficult to translate from page to screen. Never Repeats takes a gander at Sam Pillsbury's 1982 film adaptation and discusses the production, how the film holds up, and whether it manages to capture the gothic, darkly humourous tone of Morrieson's writing.
To close out 1981, Never Repeats goes on a wild adventure with David Hemmings' Race for the Yankee Zephyr, at the time the most expensive film ever made in New Zealand. So what does $6 million buy you in 1981? International stars (Donald Pleasance, George Peppard), gorgeous Queenstown locations, and some spectacular helicopter stunts and jet boat chases. But is it any good?
Never Repeats takes a journey up the Wanganui River with Michael Black's historical drama Pictures. A fictionalised portrait of Dunedin-based photographers the Burton brothers, the film depicts Alfred Burton's historic journey through King Country, while he and his brother Walter each come to terms with the harsh reality of colonialism in New Zealand.
"She's my daughter and I'll do what I like!" hollers the tagline (and main character) of Roger Donaldson's Smash Palace, a searing indictment of Kiwi masculinity, and the film that shot Bruno Lawrence to stardom. This week, Never Repeats looks back at Smash Palace to discuss the film itself, how it holds up 35 years on, and how it almost never got made in the first place.
Geoff Murphy's Goodbye Pork Pie is one of the most successful and beloved Kiwi films ever made, yet somehow neither Hayden nor L.J. had seen it before. In this week's Never Repeats they sit down to watch it for the first time and discuss how it plays to an audience that wasn't even alive when it came out.
In the second part of our two-part retrospective on the films of John O'Shea we talk about the 1966 musical comedy Don't Let It Get You, starring the great Howard Morrison, and talk about the early years of Pacific Films, the trailblazing company with which O'Shea created his legacy.
This week Never Repeats jumps back in time to look at the only feature films made in New Zealand during the '50s and '60s - all three of which were directed by John O'Shea. Part one of our special two-part retrospective covers 1952's Broken Barrier, a groundbreaking drama about a fraught interracial relationship, and 1964's Runaway, about a young man on the run from his troubles - and the police.
This week Never Repeats takes a look at Beyond Reasonable Doubt, a dramatisation of the police investigation into the infamous Crewe murders, and the subsequent trial of Arthur Allan Thomas. We also delve into David Yallop's book about the murders (which formed the basis for his screenplay), and the way the real-life case developed as the film was in production.