Sunday, 27 September 2020


Local Filmmaker featuring in 2020 Doc Edge Festival

Kuaotunu filmmaker, James Muir’s latest documentary, “A Broken Earth,” is currently screening as part of the 2020 Doc Edge Festival. The festival runs until 5 July.

As a result of COVID-19, this year’s festival is entirely online and as well as an impressive selection of local and international feature length documentaries available for a small fee, there are 21 short documentaries that online festival goers can watch for free. A Broken Earth is one of the free-to-view shorts and is also part of the Doc Edge Schools Programme, inspiring a new generation of documentary viewers. 

The film, which James first started investigating seven years ago, looks at some of the impacts of the oil and gas industry in Taranaki through the personal story of Sarah Roberts and David Morrison, environmental award-winning farmers whose family have worked the land for generations. “When an oil company moves in next door to their family farm, they are forced to deal with the effects of uncontrolled fracking and oil drilling along their quiet country road” says James. “Experiencing choking fumes, polluted water, bleeding noses and a constant smell like nail-polish remover, the pair take up a struggle to defend their land, their heritage and their livelihood.

“I am always drawn to the stories that reveal the relationship between nature and human nature. These stories can be an adventure into the great wilderness that is the natural world and a journey into the inspiring lives of others.

Before becoming a filmmaker, James (pictured here during filming), was a biologist specialising in behavioural ecology and conservation and learned the art of filmmaking with Natural History New Zealand. His most successful film to date was “River Dog” in 2011, which won 12 awards at film festivals around the globe.

A Broken Earth can be viewed online at


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