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News: Talking Animals and Forgotten Streams in TVNZ OnDemand’s Loading Docs

In three minutes you could make yourself a bowl of two minute noodles (prep time + meditation included), look through someone’s ‘Bali 2009’ album on Facebook, or watch some incredible short kiwi documentaries on TVNZ Ondemand.

Part of the Loading Docs initiative, filmmakers are given the opportunity to produce three-minute documentaries across a wide range of subjects and styles. This year, ten films were selected to be made under the overarching theme of connection, with funding from NZFC and NZ On Air.

Five of the Loading Docs films are available to view on TVNZ Ondemand now, here’s a brief breakdown of the incredible stories that you could experience in only 15 minutes. Come on, you’re not that busy:

Conversations With Pets (Dir. Justin Hawkes and Ian Hart)

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Faye Rogers is a modern Doctor Doolittle of sorts, communicating with animals from all walks of life. For example, Thistle the donkey likes to talk about crime shows, but laments the lack of strongly-drawn characters. A whimsical, wonderful doco featuring possibly the coolest ever Skype session ever recorded.

Kusuda (Dir. Amber Easby and Henry Oliver)

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What happens when nature takes the lead? Hiro Kusuda is a reclusive winemaker in Martinborough, battling the elements as a cyclone looms over his vineyard. A hauntingly shot meditation on the fragility of nature, and just bloody life.

Please Open (Dir. Karl Sheridan and Robin Gee)

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A beaming nostalgic trip to the hey-day of the Crystal Palace, Mt Eden’s almost-delapidated relic of hey-day cinema. Think rolling jaffas, ruched silk curtains and the incessant whir of 35mm film. It’s a treat to hear from patrons and staff alike, recalling the past and looking forward to the uncertain future of this iconic Auckland building.

Gina (Dir. Wendell Cooke)

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A achingly human exploration into person’s right to end their own life. Told beautifully from the point of view of a sufferer of a rare genetic disorder, Gina provides an unyielding, heartbreaking, and absolutely essential insight into the euthanasia debate.

Waihorotiu (Dir. Frances Haszard and Louis Olsen)

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Featuring one of the most awe-inspiring opening shots I’ve seen in a while (above) Waihorotiu tells the story of Queen Street’s forgotten stream. Poetic and poignant in its journey through an untapped facet (or faucet ha ha) of our natural history, you’ll think twice the next time you walk over a man hole.

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Click here to watch the Loading Docs documentaries on TVNZ Ondemand