Review: Night Raiders is gripping, provocative, chilling indigenous storytelling

The long Easter weekend is almost upon us and there is an excellent local offering to tempt you into cinemas.

Night Raiders is a co-production between Aotearoa and Canada and is gripping and provocative indigenous storytelling that demands to be seen on the big screen.

Set in a dystopian future world post a world at war, where the remaining children are conscripted into military service, Night Raiders pumps blood into the heart of a mother's love for her daughter in a world where the sins of the past seep into the pores of every survivor.

Niska (Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers) has spent her life hiding and protecting her daughter Waseese (Brooklyn Letexier-Hart) at all costs when she is forced to make a horrific choice in order to save her.

Refusing to let her go, Niska must open herself up to trusting strangers when she knows some should not be trusted at all.

Anchored by standout performances from Tailfeathers and Letexier-Hart along with rising Kiwi star Alex Tarrant and veteran actor Amanda Plummer in support, the lean, genuinely nerve-wracking delivery elevates this story into an incredibly engaging and memorable sci-fi laced with very powerful messages around oppression and indigenous peoples' rights and heritage.

Four-and-a-half stars.