Crooked Earth

Crooked Earth still

Crooked Earth - 2001

Communicado Productions - 106 min.
DVD UPC # 9315842019518

Cast: Temuera Morrison, Jaime Passier-Armstrong, Lawrence Makoare, Quinton Hita, Nancy Brunning, Sydney Jackson.
Screenplay: Greg McGee, Waihoroi Shortland; Cinematography: David Gribble; Music: James Hall; Editor: Chris Plummer; Production Design: Kai Hawkins; Producers: Robin Scholes, Peter Beilby, Henri Dorlet, Ernst Goldschmidt ; Director: Sam Pillsbury.

Captain Will Bastion , after a forced resignation from the Army, returns to Ruakura, for the first time in 18 years, to bury his father, the tribal chief whose mantle Will inherits. However Will is reluctant to fulfill the tradition and his younger brother, Kahu, is quite willing to seize the opportunity. To further complicate matters, Will's estranged 17-year-old daughter, Ripeka, has also arrived for the funeral. Unfortunately the film shows the result of too many writers (two primary, plus three secondary) in an unclear progression of events. Filmed primarily around the Coromandal penninsula, it is an attractive project with an excellent soundtrack. Worth a view.

Censor Rating: R13 - Review Rating: B-

Crooked Earth Trailer
Official MP4 Trailer


As of March 2009, New DVD-R4 copies have been seen for $40nz. R2 DVDs are available for about 20Eur or 15#. This is a 1.66:1 format with 2.0 Dolby Digital sound, although the R2 ones state the sound is 5.1. There are no extras.
The only legal R1 ntsc versions are ones from Latin American countries under the title, 'El Regreso Del Guerrero'. They have the original English soundtrack with Spanish subtitles and are occationally being offered at ebay and Amazon - priced at $50-$100!

Recommended Reseller - Aro Video of Wellington

I have a lightly used VHS PAL original copy available for sale at $2. Check out the VHS Sale Page

WorldCat is the world's largest library catalog - Click to find the nearest Library that has this title.


Click for Crooked Earth Soundtrack CD Details

SOUNDTRACKS VAULT - Link to MP3 samples of all titles


New Zealand Film Archive Info and Reviews

Lael Loewenstein Review

Four Word Film Review

Reviews at

Davinia Thornley Review


Listener, 180no.3197(Aug.18 2001)
Metro, 243(Sept.2001)
Sunday star-times, Aug.26 2001
Waikato times, Aug.28, 2001


VIDEO VAULT - Links to trailers and clips for all titles.

NZ On Screen Videos & Comments

Sam Pillsbury - Quiet and Crooked Earth Andrew Whiteside Video Interview

Funeral Scene at YouTube (4 minutes)

Information at the New Zealand Film Commission Website

Information at IMDB

Prime-time activists in 'Crooked Earth' - The meta-narrative of Aotearoa New Zealand film by Davinia Thornley

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