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The Insatiable Moon (3 stars)

New Zealand romance with mental illness themes can't quite reach the Cuckoo's Nest

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The Insatiable Moon

(15) 100min

It’s no surprise that this uplifting comic drama from New Zealand, which is set in a home for the mentally ill, features a charismatic but unstable protagonist and mixes social realism with religious parable, has been proclaimed One Flew Over the Kiwi’s Nest. Rawiri Paratene (Whale Rider) plays Arthur, the self-proclaimed Second Son of God who presides over a motley crew of misfits in a boarding house for the mentally ill and homeless that’s threatened with closure. Following a sexual liaison with a troubled community worker (Sara Wiseman) Arthur becomes increasingly deluded, but even as the doctors drug him into submission his vision for a caring society appears to be coming to fruition.

Husband/wife writer/director team Mike and Rosemary Riddell’s low-budget film (adapted by former Baptist preacher Mike from his own novel and directed by Rosemary while moonlighting from her day job as a judge) doesn’t pack the allegorical and cinematic clout of Ken Kesey’s book and Milos Forman’s film, but it’s energised, thoughtful and charming. And it benefits from a sure sense of place (small town Ponsonby, where Riddell once preached) and a decent cast of relative unknowns.

GFT, Glasgow, Fri 25–Sun 27 Mar; Hippodrome, Bo’ness Wed 27–Thu 28 Apr; Eden Court Theatre, Inverness, Thu 28–Sat 30 Apr; Robert Burns Centre Film Theatre, Dumfries, Tue 21–Wed 22 Jun.

The Insatiable Moon Official Trailer

The Insatiable Moon

  • 3 stars
  • 2010
  • New Zealand
  • 15
  • Directed by: Rosemary Riddell
  • Cast: Ian Mune, Bruce Phillips, Sara Wiseman

Dubbed 'One Flew Over the Kiwi's Nest', this low-budget, uplifting comic drama doesn't pack the allegorical and cinematic clout of Ken Kesey's book and Milos Forman's film, but is energised, thoughtful and charming.

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