Review: The Justice of Bunny King went straight to my heart

This year has already been a bumper one for local films and still to come is horror/thriller Coming Home in the Dark and family drama Juniper.

Hitting cinemas right now though, with rising Hollywood star Thomasin McKenzie centre-stage, is The Justice of Bunny King.

A first-time feature from director Gaysorn Thavat from a stunning script by filmmaker Sophie Henderson gloriously shot and edited by cinematographer Ginny Loane and Cushla Dillon, The Justice of Bunny King is wall to wall wāhine toa calling the shots.

And that's before we even get in front of the camera - Essie Davis in the lead, Thomasin McKenzie at her side, this oftentimes confronting film is anchored by their formidable talent.

You might know Bunny, you might know someone who knows Bunny, you may even be Bunny, and if not, after two hours walking in her shoes, you will feel how crippling life can be battling a system while still battling your past.

Bunny is trying to turn her life around, saving her coins, fighting for a place to live, with one single aim: to get her children back.

Her irrepressible fiery passion is both her power and her Achilles heel and with her goal within reach she finds herself on the road with her niece Tonyah, her only mission to be with her daughter on her birthday.

This film burrowed under my skin and went straight to my heart. Potent and heroic, Bunny opens a door into the so often little-seen lives of women and families living with trauma, desperation and powerlessness and she's amazing. 

Five stars.