We use cookies to help us understand how you use our site, and make your experience better. To find out more read our privacy policy.




Full screen
Video quality

Low 0 MB

High 0 MB


Hero image for Canterbury is a Hundred

Canterbury is a Hundred

Short Film (Full Length) – 1950

This booster's gem was produced by the NFU to mark Canterbury's centennial. The original Canterbury crusaders' dream of a model England colony is shown in settler life re-enactments. The importance of meat and wheat to the region's prosperity is extolled and a progressive narrative — "in one brief century they've turned the wilderness into fertile farms and built their red-roofed homes" — underpins contemporary scenes (cricket, church) and much bucolic (plains, alps) scenery. Trivia: Peter Jackson used an excerpt from the film to open Heavenly Creatures.

Carefully picked from all ranks of English these were the model settlers for the model colony ... whether capitalist or artisan squire or labourer life in Canterbury began in a V hut.
– from the narration


Archives New Zealand copy reference 550,003
16mm motion picture film


Music composed by Anthony Noorts, played by the Alex. Lindsay Orchestra 


If you liked this, you might also like...

Collection image for Brian Brake at the NFU

Brian Brake at the NFU

Photographer Brian Brake was also an accomplished...

Collection image for Christchurch


As a showcase history of Christchurch onscreen this...

Thumbnail image for Shearing Technique

Shearing Technique

A Godfrey Bowen-presented NFU film on shearing

Thumbnail image for Bred to Win

Bred to Win

Documentary on throughbred breeding in NZ

Thumbnail image for Our People Our Century - A Piece of Land

Our People Our Century - A Piece of Land

Features the Elworthy family’s South Canterbury farm

Thumbnail image for Here to Stay - The English

Here to Stay - The English

The English episode of a series on NZ settler groups

Thumbnail image for Journey for Three

Journey for Three

A dramatised account of three English postwar settlers

Thumbnail image for F.R.E.S.H


A music video “set somewhere in Canterbury”

Thumbnail image for The Snowline is Their Boundary

The Snowline is Their Boundary

More high country farming

Thumbnail image for Inside and Out

Inside and Out

Christchurch Cathedral featured in a music video.

Thumbnail image for The Glacier Climbers

The Glacier Climbers

A Southern Alps traverse from Westland to Canterbury

Thumbnail image for When a City Falls

When a City Falls

The earthquakes that changed Christchurch

Thumbnail image for Praise Be - Christchurch Cathedral Special

Praise Be - Christchurch Cathedral Special

More about Christchurch cathedral

Thumbnail image for Christchurch - Garden City of New Zealand

Christchurch - Garden City of New Zealand

Another newsreel celebration of Canterbury

Thumbnail image for Heavenly Creatures

Heavenly Creatures

An excerpt from this film is used in Heavenly Creatures

Thumbnail image for Centennial City

Centennial City

A centennial look at Dunedin

Thumbnail image for Norwester - Wind of Contrasts

Norwester - Wind of Contrasts

The story of the nor'west wind

Thumbnail image for Ngaio Marsh Theatre - Died in the Wool

Ngaio Marsh Theatre - Died in the Wool

A Canterbury-set Ngaio Marsh murder mystery

Thumbnail image for Pictorial Parade No. 1

Pictorial Parade No. 1

NFU doco features Canterbury A&P show

Thumbnail image for One Land - Full Series

One Land - Full Series

A reality show set in colonial times

Thumbnail image for Colonial House - First Episode

Colonial House - First Episode

Another look at colonial NZ settler life

Thumbnail image for The Stolen

The Stolen

2017 feature film set in 1870s Canterbury

Thumbnail image for Weekly Review No. 337 - Wheat Problem 1948

Weekly Review No. 337 - Wheat Problem 1948

A contemporary film celebrating wheat