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  • Writer's pictureJames Rutherford

'Hunt for the Wilderpeople': A Charming and Vivacious Adventure Story from New Zealand

Movie poster for the New Zealand film Hunt for the Wilderpeople starring Julian Dennison and Sam Neill

“Hunt for the Wilderpeople” (2016) is a charming and vivacious adventure film starring Julian Dennison as Ricky Baker, an abrasive juvenile offender who is delivered by child welfare services to a remote farm in the New Zealand countryside.

Taken in by foster parents Bella (Rima Te Wiata) and Hec (Sam Neill), Ricky clings to his steeled urban shell, chafing at the cantankerous Hec yet unable to resist the sweet charms of Bella—particularly after she gifts him a dog he names “Tupac”. When Bella falls ill, however, and the threat of child services taking him away proves all-too-threatening, the mismatched Ricky and Hec abscond into the wilderness on a grand, often comical expedition of elusion and desperation.

Written and directed by neo-sensation Taika Waititi (“Thor: Ragnarok”, “Jojo Rabbit”) and based on the book “Wild Pork and Watercress” by Barry Crump, 'Hunt for the Wilderpeople' sees Waititi employing his highly stylized brand of comedy-drama fusion in top form, delivering a simultaneously winsome and outlandish tale of modern-day adventurism. A real crowd-pleaser, this one’s tough to forgo and entirely impossible to resist.


View the trailer:

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