New Zealand a Place of Healing

West of Memphis, produced by Peter Jackson and directed by American filmmaker Amy Berg, has had its premiere in Wellington as part of the New Zealand International Film Festival. The film centres on Damien Echols, one of the West Memphis Three convicted of the 1993 murders of three eight-year-old boys in West Memphis, Arkansas. As the film’s closing credits rolled, the 800 audience members at the sold-out Embassy Theatre screening gave a standing ovation, ahead of a question and answer session with Jackson, Echols and his wife and number one campaigner, Lorri Davis. Echols says New Zealand has been an incredibly healing place for him. “Even when I hear the New Zealand accent now, it gives me that feeling of home, just because it took me in when I didn’t have anywhere else to go, and it gave me time just to rest,” Echols said.


Tags: Damien Echols  Documentary  Embassy Theatre  New Zealand International Film Festival  Peter Jackson  Sydney Morning Herald (The)  West of Memphis  

Hamish Bennett’s Bellbird Antidote to Winter Gloom

Hamish Bennett’s Bellbird Antidote to Winter Gloom

“Warming the cockles of audience hearts at last year’s Sydney Film Festival, New Zealander Hamish Bennett’s comedy Bellbird is a defiantly optimistic tribute to the Northland region where the primary school…