Maiden’s Blush­has mil­lion-dol­lar look


A new New Zealand movie shot by an Otaki cin­e­matog­ra­pher was partly filmed in Porirua.

Great Maiden’s Blush pre­miered at the Em­bassy The­atre in Welling­ton on May 2.

The fea­ture-length film was shot over nine weeks in Porirua and Welling­ton by Welling­ton di­rec­tors An­drea Bosshard and Shane Loader. Otaki’s Waka At­tewell headed the cin­e­matog­ra­phy.

The film’s ti­tle comes from the name of an old rose, and some footage was shot in a pri­vate rose gar­den in Waikanae’s Te Moana Rd.

The shoot­ing was split be­tween Welling­ton streets, and a set built in Porirua us­ing Whi­tireia Polytech­nic teach­ing fa­cil­i­ties, which are al­ready built to sim­u­late a hospi­tal.

The con­tem­po­rary drama has re­ceived pos­i­tive re­views. Its plot fol­lows two moth­ers from dif­fer­ent back­grounds who share a ma­ter­nity ward and forge an al­liance.

‘‘It’s in­cred­i­bly in­tel­li­gent, it looks like a mil­lion dol­lars, but it was done on a very small bud­get,’’ At­tewell said.

‘‘It’s char­ac­ter driven and in­cred­i­bly tense, and the au­di­ence en­joy it be­cause it’s like un­pack­ing a Rus­sian doll – just as you think you’ve worked it out, there’s a shift.’’

At­tewell has worked with some of New Zealand’s fore­most screen tal­ent, and col­lected a haul of awards dur­ing his ca­reer, but said this film was a game changer to cre­ate.

‘‘An­drea and Shane don’t work like any other di­rec­tors I’ve worked with.

‘‘These days every­thing is time ver­sus money.

‘‘You end up cut­ting cor­ners be­cause the whole thing is money-driven, whereas for Great Maiden’s Blush we put the time into mak­ing the movie … find­ing the movie among the script.

‘‘It al­lowed more space for the ac­tors to find the mo­ment, it al­lows more time to make the mo­ment plea­sur­able.

‘‘Ev­ery­one who’s watched it has said they haven’t seen any­thing like it in years and years, it’s good.’’

Great Maiden’s Blush is show­ing in 52 cine­mas na­tion­ally.

Miriama McDow­ell, as Bunny, in The Great Maiden’s Blush, part of which was shot in Porirua.

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