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48HOURS Entries, 2021

City Winner

Unfinished Symphony

Awkward Animations

City Winner



City Winner

Good Girl

Traces of Nut

National Finalist


Mitchell's Here

National Finalist

The Last Lord of Scotland

Dystography Studios

National Finalist

Loot & Blunder

I Love Loops

National Finalist

We built and destroyed a full sized cardboard u-boat specifically and only for this competition. also known as “DAS BANANA-BOOT”

Qualified Tim

National Finalist

A Matter of Time

Apple Fork

National Finalist


Underwater Dreams

National Finalist

Pre-emptive Defense

Couch Kumara

Peter Jackson Wildcard

Shit Chat


Peter Jackson Wildcard


Cyan Sea

Peter Jackson Wildcard

Rekindled Spirits

Pastafarian Productions

Recent reviews

OK I guess I had better review this one whilst it is still fresh in my memory coming off 2nd place in Wellington, congrats on that and good luck for potential national finals!

Onto the film itself, where a self-defense guru with 15 years training passes on his knowledge of impacting, incapacitating and impairing would-be attackers with hilarious effect to a class not ready for his swift authoritative action, made all the more difficult for one student when they take the wrong pills.

The performances here were top notch with Sam O'Connor as the direct professional instructor commanding powerful screen presence, whilst Josh Dey nailed the wide eyed beginner with aplomb. Script was also gold with incredibly memorable lines such as the penis being the CPU of the paedophile. Gold.

Editing was slick, and the reaction shot was killer too, evocating instant memories of Eric Stolz administering a needle in PULP FICTION. So yeah, I can definitely see the reason for the awards as story was strong and elements were nailed which is exactly what we're looking for from 48.

Now for mine there were a couple of things that held the film ever so slightly back. I mentioned it in my review of Tripping Point but yes utterly surreal seeing multiple teams with a race against time to stop drugs hitting the central nervous system of the protagonist. Plus as per my previous paragraph that was most definitely a Tarantino homage at least. So some of the key story beats not being the most original just personally I noticed, however it was balanced out by everything else being unique.

Ultra - shot in the dark was to be honest on the line for me. Like yeah it was an evening class in a dimly lit room, but not quite sure it fully ticked the 'in the dark' box there. I don't mind really though I think Ultra really shouldn't come into things when measuring entries against other teams.

Last personal slight negative for me was I thought the film looked great and it was a genuinely believable dojo/centre, but it also meant the background was a little bit plain. On the other hand that worked by allowing the strong script and performances to stand out. Which was helped by having crystal clear sound and sound design.

And that's just personal opinion, because the thing is everything was so tightly consistent in terms of grade and framing that its super hard to deny how bulletproof your cinematography win was.

One thing I will say though is that on first viewing through the heats I had the film marked down as a 3 or 3.5 out of 5. I thought the script was great but wasn't sure the story worked as a cohesive whole. However it 'came alive' for lack of a better term on second viewing, and seeing it on the big screen with 600+ others proved just how cinematic it was. I'm still not 100% on the story despite the great script (hence my arbitrary rating of 3.5/5) but in combination with the elements I truly see how it worked overall. So great job team, awesome to see legends like you continue to make rock solid films in this comp.

Story: 3.5/5
Technical: 4.5/5
Elements: 4.5/5
Overall: 4/5

First of all, congrats to your director Kathleen for your WIFT award, the directing in this film was probably the strongest part about it (and there were many strong aspects) as you were able to drum up very convincing performances from all of your performers in this tale of freedom and following your dreams.

The film was rhythmic, with fantastic breathing to the pacing of proceedings, as a therapy session turned into a revealing self assessment for both patient, doctor and any audience watching with a sensational fourth wall break. You have to have a lot of confidence and ability to be able to build your film like this in 5 minutes, but colour me impressed at how you handled your structure.

What I particularly liked was how the film started grounded in reality and moved into a slightly surreal tone, with the collective movement of people feeling particularly hypnotic. Yes, "fucking the wind" is arguable a farcical message but if you look past that and truly listened to the script its impressive how Underwater Dreams used their film as a platform for the truly powerful message that being yourself is freeing.

Also, far out does this film play well with a crowd, absolutely slaying the audience with induced laughter at both the heat I saw it at and Wellington final.

Technically I was a little bewildered by the choice to shoot in Academy ratio, however the focus pulling was top notch with every speaking part being given fantastic depth whenever they were centred on camera. In many ways it helped a lot as well, because the tight framing felt reflective of the tightness/constriction the lead actress felt until the freedom and personal choice was embraced in the second half of the film.

Story: 4/5
Technical: 4/5
Elements: 4.5/5
Overall: 4/5

Whoa that was a brilliant film. What an ending. Was waiting for a really epic unloading and I was not disappointed.
For a single location and simple premise this had me hooked. The performances were just what was needed and possibly one of the most memorable lines from any film so far "the heart and the asshole are connected" love it

Loved the feel of this film. The weight of the film rested on the shoulders of the leads performance and she carried it to the final frame.
The special effects enhanced the cheesy nature of the film. The tension was high once the action kicked in and the ending came naturally.
Congratulations of a stellar film.

For some reason I couldn't watch this here.
So I have to do this from memory.

Maori titles are tricky because words in isolation don't mean anything so can be taken in lots of ways. Which makes it a little disorienting for a reo Maori speaker because this has a lot going on and I was still figuring out which Āta you meant. My assumption is that you meant Alter?

Also didn't mind the open for interpretation imagery because the intent felt like it is something you can come back to again and again. (Which is annoying because vimeo won't let me watch it).

Loved the details of the kete of knowledge.
The stick figures ending with a physical space where they actually are.

As steel potato mentioned, it's tricky to squash general historical events into a tidy story structure. But I think you would have to solve Colonisation to get that to fit. Which is a bit much for a 48.
Keep it up

Really happy to have read the comments here, as I honestly struggled to understand this film. Now some light has been shed, so I can enjoy my second watch at the Grand Final :)
However, I really enjoyed how absorbing and creative this was the first time round. Not your stereotypical horror, but disturbing none the less.
Well done!


I loved this and was stoked to see it win the Auckland Final. It's simple, sweet and moving. A part of me feels like there could've been more to it (for example, some character development), but as a slice of life, reflective style film, it was great.


I felt personally targeted by this film, guys. It feels like you know me well enough to know exactly what kind of 48Hour film I want to see, because I absolutely LOVED this movie and for a long time was my early pick for City Winner.

I love all the elements at play here - I love the central love story, I love the photographer - what an awesome idea for a character! Ya'll won best use of unlikely hero for this because it was an absolute masterclass in watching this grenade of a character end up delivering the day-saving profound monologue.

You also were nominated for best use of heartbeat here, and I'm sure you were surprised to see the clip at the finals playing the photographer's theme song instead of your literal heartbeat placed at the beginning. I've done enough 48Hour comps to recognize a team coming up with a cool way to use an element but then being worried it won't count because it's too abstract and so putting a proper one in there for safety ahahah. Maybe I'm wrong! It doesn't take away from your film at all, but for what it's worth your theme song heartbeat was absolutely all you needed to qualify, and a refreshing example to see after dozens of typical heartbeats.

The real highlight of your film though was the whole Scottish influence - the bagpipes, the Lord/Lady motif - I'm so enamoured with this creative decision because it's the kind of subtextual flavour you VERY rarely see employed in a 48Hour film - it's hard for me to explain but there's something so nuanced and fun about this element, especially because you could have not included it in the film at all and I wouldn't have noticed anything missing. Truly the secret sauce on top of your already immaculate short - reminiscent of other 48Hour films that have used a foreign cultural identity to make their film richer (like UTKA from Poutine Wolf or Mi Amigo Mandarina from Grand Cheval).

I have exactly ONE NOTE on how I think this film could have been improved, one small weakness - which is after the future Lady Perry has her breakdown and we cut to the wide of her screaming in the car, I think when we returned to the scene, we really needed some kind of location change - whether that be them driving home, stopping for petrol or even going for a walk in the nearby woods to clear their heads - it just felt like strange pacing to have a clear time jump but then return to the same location. Maybe just me though! LOL.

Regardless guys, this is my favourite Dystography film, one of my favourites of the year, and maybe even of all time. It's like I was made for this. Or it was made for me?

Things you got right: An awesome love story (resulting in a genuine reason for its nomination for best use of genre), fantastic characters and a filmic identity rarely present in other 48Hour films

Things to work on for next time: God, idk, just make more of these striking and earnest comedies. I love comedies.

Seamless, satirical and with a message. A quality production that will be hard to beat.