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Pictures Film (Excerpts) – 1981 Drama War

Pictures

Film (Excerpts) – 1981 Drama War

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The reassessment of history is never an easy task, especially a history as clouded with noble self-deception as the colonisation of New Zealand. All credit, then, to Pictures, for tackling the subject, and for bringing to its reassessment a remarkable clarity and a considerable complexity of perspective.
– Nick Roddick in the Monthly Film Bulletin, October 1982
Another photographer. By royal appointment, I see. Rather different from your brother. He came up north with me and took a lot of photos of Māoris in the mud.
– Railways surveyor John Rochfort (Terence Bayler)
The theatricality builds up an excellent sense of European staginess — of just how unreal, in a way, British civilisation must have been, planted out here. The magnificent shot of Dunedin Railway Station is the same: on film it becomes the statement it originally was — of power, endurance, economic assertion. It spells out in words of granite: We Are Here to Stay. It is in this sense of carefully chosen images that Pictures succeeds. It manages to build up a coherent sense of a society, and uses the framework of photography to ask questions about early New Zealand. All credit then.
– Peter Wells, in a 18 June 1983 Listener review