REVIEW: JUBILEE

 

CAST

Cliff Curtis (Training Day)
Theresa Healey (Filthy Rich)
Jaime Passier-Armstrong (Power Rangers Ninja Storm)
Charley Murphy Samau (The Tribe)
Hori Ahipene (Maddigan’s Quest)
Kevin Smith (Xena)
Taungaroa Emile (Whale Rider)
Ross Duncan (Young Hercules)
Marise Wipani (Shortland Street)
Stephen Tozer (City Life)
Liddy Holloway (Hercules: TLJ)
Elizabeth Hawthorne (Cleopatra 2525)
Bruce Hopkins (Housebound)

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Jubilee is a funny, warm-hearted comedy set in heartland New Zealand. It is the story of Billy Williams, his family and the small town of Waimatua – the sweet potato capital of the world. Our hero Billy Williams may be hopeless, but he’s no loser. He’s a likeable guy who’s always volunteering to help out where he can, and he’s a great Dad to Lucille and Walter. But unfortunately he never finishes a job and is the world’s worst procrastinator – much to his wife Pauline’s dismay. Billy’s opportunity to redeem himself comes when Agnes Morrison, the driving force behind the Waimatua School 75th Jubilee, is killed in a tragic bovine semen extraction accident. Billy gets lumbered with the task and he’s determined to prove his worth as the new Jubilee Chairman. He’ll organize the mother of all Jubilees! Meanwhile, the impending celebration and the thought of those who will return to Waimatua forces Pauline to question the choices she has made in her life. While Billy fulfills his desire to be the big man around town, Pauline starts renovating herself – finishing all those uncompleted jobs the way she wants. A new woman is in the making…. For a small town in decline, the Jubilee gives everyone something to look forward to and Billy wins a new-found respect in Waimatua.The story has a simple, even classical, comedy arc and Hurst and writer Michael Bennett, working from Nepi Solomon’s novel, don’t try anything fancy bringing it to the screen. The absence of anything greatly original is one of the film’s chief virtues. It’s so genial and self-confident that it carries itself along. It’s buoyed up, too, by terrific performances.