Pretty BrutalDirected by Monica De Alwis
Time: 62 minutes
Country: New Zealand
Synopsis Meet the women of the Pirate City Rollers, the first roller derby league in New Zealand. This smashmouth group of femme fatales are fighting together (and amongst each other) to garner support for their starter league. Everything’s an argument: the struggle for sponsorships, the “right kind” of publicity, the internal politics, even the physical toll of a brutal sport.
After following the group through their inaugural season, filmmaker Monica Dealwis edits her footage a masterpiece of storytelling. What might have been a generic league profile quickly shifts into a character study as it becomes clear that one dynamic league founder, fraught with personal insecurity and passive-aggressive tendencies, has the capability to make or break the entire league.
It’s a sport where lipstick, fishnets, and compound fractures are equally commonplace. Where women use feminine allure to sell a stereotypically unfeminine activity. Where cattiness and competition abound both on the rink and off. And where a power struggle gets out of control when it goes to a mascara-addled head.
This film contains strong language.
Synopsis by Kate and Mike Bernola
This film will be preceded by:
First Match (14 minutes, US)
Directed by Olivia Newman
Synopsis: Monique is the first girl on her high school's all boys wrestling team. Though she struggles for acceptance from her teammates, she has a bigger goal: Monique sees wrestling as a way to connect with her father -- a former high school wrestler who is a struggling single dad. (14 minutes, USA)