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Kangaroo: a Love-Hate Story

Kangaroo: a Love-Hate Story

Directed by Kate McIntyre Clere and Mick McIntyre, this explosive documentary breaks new ground, uncovering an unlikely truth about Australia’s love-hate relationship with its beloved icon, when the award-winning KANGAROO hits New Zealand screens from June 19.

The kangaroo image is proudly used by top companies such as Qantas, sports teams and as tourist souvenirs, yet when they hop across the vast continent some consider them to be pests to be shot and sold for profit, turned into everything from fancy fashion products to pet food and gourmet cuisine. KANGAROO unpacks a national paradigm where the relationship with kangaroos is examined, uncovering disturbing scenes behind the largest mass destruction of wildlife in the world.

Recalling eco-activist films such as The Cove and Blackfish, expat Kiwi Kate McIntyre Clere and Mick McIntyre have examined this dilemma in an impassioned take on the kangaroo from cultural, environmental, economic and political perspectives. Above all, they want an Australian-wide debate about the future of the kangaroo. “As filmmakers we were shocked to learn about how little is known about the treatment of kangaroos in Australia and the lack of public response” McIntyre Clere said.

Impressing the need for a change of thinking, KANGAROO presents a wealth of informed opinions from experts and stakeholders on both sides of the issue. The filmmakers have captured robust testimony from people such as Terri Irwin, leading economist Ken Henry, former Citibank president Philip Wollen and Australian of the Year 2007, scientist Tim Flannery.

This incendiary provocation has lit up film festivals across the world from Cannes to Rotterdam, with the Los Angeles Times calling it “insightful and eye-opening” and The New York Times remarking “the filmmakers are determined to sound a wake-up siren, and they blast it here with extra strength.” It won “Best Film” at the World Documentary Awards earlier this year, followed in quick succession by the Award of Excellence at the Impact Doc Awards.

On its release in Australia, the film became a lightning rod for controversy, with journalists across the country (many of whom had not seen the movie) jumping in to criticise the movie and the filmmakers. Front-page news stories and incendiary debate on television breakfast shows ensued, with television personality David Koch calling it “the most controversial Australian film ever released”.

McIntyre Clere explains, “we were not prepared for the strong reaction here in Australia. Clearly the film hit a nerve, with a love-hate trolling across all media. That said, Australian critics gave it 4 stars and positive reviews. The film revealed Australia’s dirty secret and the country was shocked.”

Kate McIntyre Clere is an expat-Kiwi and multi-award-winning documentary filmmaker who brings together key international social and environmental issues with beautiful cinematic storytelling. Her canon of work includes the films What to do about Whales, A Year on the Wing, Yogawoman, Aussie Rules the World and A Hard Place.

“The documentary succeeds in taking the viewers, right at the center of action, presenting Australian landscape in its raw form. A total entertainer, educational and interesting package for the viewers, ‘Kangaroo: A love-hate story’ definitely forms an instant connection with the audience. An Extremely interesting must see.” Lavanya – Red Carpet Crash LA

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