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New Zealand, 2001 (MIFF 2002, Documentaries)

Director: Annie Goldson, Peter Wells

Annie Goldson made a serious impact on MIFF audiences in 1999 with her heart-rending documentary about the aftermath of the Dili massacre, Punitive Damage. Her latest work once again reflects a personal struggle, this time for acceptance. Georgie Girl explores the colourful, always outrageous and sometimes dangerous life of transgender New Zealand parliamentarian, Georgina Beyer in an isolated, ultra-conservative town.

Goldson's insightful portrait of a most unconventional figure traces Beyer's journey from a confused Maori homosexual youth in an intolerant community to her years as a sex worker then later career as an actor, singer and, ultimately, politician. Remarkably candid and entertaining, Beyer's style and charms have won over a conservative, rural electorate that made her, firstly, a city councilor then mayor and finally a key political player.

In her maiden speech to Parliament, with characteristic self-deprecating and ribald humour, Beyer observed about herself, "This was the stallion that became a gelding and now she's a mare. I suppose I do have to say that I have now found myself to be a member. So I've come full circle."

"A strange and wonderful package." - NZ Herald

Annie Goldson has been producing and directing award-winning documentaries for 15 years in the US and New Zealand. Her work includes Counter-terror: The North of Ireland (1990), Framing the Panthers in Black and White (1991), Death Row Notebooks (1993) and Seeing Red (1995).

See also...


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