GUILT

By Brendan DONOVAN

FB PICTURES LIMITED - as PROD

Drama - Development 2017

An Icelandic hunter seeks redemption as he tries to free the Maori teenager wrongly accused of his daughter’s murder

    • Year of production
    • 2017
    • Genres
    • Drama, Thriller
    • Countries
    • NEW ZEALAND, ICELAND
    • Languages
    • ENGLISH, ICELANDIC
    • Budget
    • 1 - 3 M$
    • Duration
    • 90 mn
    • Director(s)
    • Brendan DONOVAN
    • Writer(s)
    • Brendan DONOVAN
    • Producer(s)
    • Fraser BROWN (FB PICTURES LIMITED), Kristinn THORDARSON (TRUENORTH), Leifur DAGFINNSSON (TRUENORTH)
    • Synopsis
    • The lead character is Vignir, an Icelandic marine engineer, hunter, and natural sceptic. He’s coping with guilt, he feels he is responsible for his wife’s death, and this has pushed his daughter to the far side of the world.

      The film opens as Maja, an Icelandic PhD student, is murdered in Taupo, New Zealand. Smashed over the head with a bat as she walks home from the pub one night. She’s been working on plans for the first geothermal power plant to be fully owned by local Maori. She’s ambitious, smart, and speaks her mind.
      Her father, Vignir, comes down from Iceland to collect the body. Maja is his only child. Yet they are estranged, and haven’t spoken for a year.

      Quite quickly the police make an arrest. A 15-year-old Maori street kid called Danny. It seems a clear case of random violence.

      Then Vignir finds, Peter, Maja’s boyfriend and co-worker – he’s hung himself in her flat.

      Vignir, his hunter’s instincts aroused - and in no hurry to return to the unwelcome attention of a funeral back home - begins to try to understand why his daughter was murdered. He’s pushed Maja away to the bottom of the world, and now she’s dead: he’s broken, he’s in pain, and he must atone. Could Danny have been wrongly accused?

      He tracks down Danny’s mother and forms an uneasy alliance. Through her, he slowly gets closer to Danny, a boy with a secret he’s not ready to tell. If Vignir can save the boy, then maybe he can find some good in all this.

      Vignir’s hunt for the truth uncovers a conspiracy that reaches deep into the elite of the town, white and Maori. Maja’s research proves the power plant is dangerous, if it was made public, the project would be doomed.

      Maja’s death has been ordered by Tainui Walters, the rogue yet charismatic leader of the tribe’s commercial arm. A man who firmly believes that his tribe’s time has come.

      Tainui has Danny’s step-father in his thrall, as well as the senior detective on Maja’s murder, and the leader of the geothermal research insitute where Maja was working. As Vignir discovers, beneath the crust of this idyllic, geothermal town lies a boiling mess of greed and guilt and Maori discontent.

      Danny, in the wrong place at the wrong time, has been framed with Maja’s death.

      The final confrontation between Vignir, and Tainui and his cronies, at Tainui’s remote snow-swept property dramatically reveals both the depth of Vignir’s pain and the effectiveness of his hunting skills - allowing him to bury his past, while freeing the innocent boy.
    • Partners & financing
    • Truenorth - Co-Production Partner
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