Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square


Year: 2001
Country: New Zealand
Run Time: 105 minutes

The recent death of Princess Margaret lends a note of pathos to this winningly nostalgic drama, evocative of the era shortly after WWII when the House of Windsor represented all the stuff that dreams, fairy-tales and fellowship were made of, for nations throughout the British Commonwealth, no matter how far-flung from Buckingham Palace. It's 1953 and the coronation of Queen Elizabeth sends waves of excitement throughout the Empire. Those that lap against the shores of faraway New Zealand are felt most strongly by a 12-year-old called Elizabeth, who idolizes her royal namesake. Then comes the wonderful news that the Queen will tour the Kiwi dairy-country region and pass through little Elizabeth's very own hometown of Middleton (famed for its cheeses). Or at least it would be wonderful news, except it turns the townspeople against Elizabeth's new friend. She's Hira Mata, a Maori native elder whose shabby eyesore of a home stands along the processional route, a potential embarrassment to civic pride should the Queen have to see it. Young Elizabeth must ultimately choose between loyalty to Hira Mata and a once-in-a lifetime opportunity to meet a reigning monarch. The heroine's dilemma, and how she resolves it, should constitute a fresh entry in any viewer's Princess Diaries.

Mark J. Gordon

Mark J. Gordon

Walter Coblenz

Stephan Katz

Virginia Katz

Principal Cast
Sally Andrews, Vicky Haughton, Mark Clare, Craig Elliott, Liddy Holloway, Anna Sheridan

Film Contact
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