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Hunt for the Wilderpeople - Film4

(Image credit: © Vertigo Films)

An utterly beguiling New Zealand comedy drama starring Julian Dennison and Sam Neill

An utterly beguiling New Zealand comedy drama starring Julian Dennison and Sam Neill.

Director Taika Waititi (who made vampire comedy What We Do in the Shadows and hilarious Marvel superhero movie Thor: Ragnarok) effortlessly packs in the big laughs and moving moments in his tale of troubled city kid Dennison (who went on to star in Deadpool 2) who is taken by exasperated welfare officer Rachel House to yet another foster home, owned by gruff Neill and his wife Rima Te Wiata.

She is kind-hearted and generous, while Neill is taciturn and unwelcoming but, after a rocky start, Dennison starts to settle.

Then tragedy strikes and he and Neill end up on the run in the wilderness, with the authorities in hot pursuit. And gradually, of course, the chalk-and cheese duo - Neill is very much at one with nature, Dennison is out-of-shape lover of hip-hop - begin to bond.

The stars are absolutely perfect and this little gem of a film’s warm heart shines throughout.