7.5/10
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35 user 73 critic

The Dark Horse (2014)

Trailer
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A brilliant but troubled New Zealand chess champion finds purpose by teaching underprivileged children about the rules of chess and life.
24 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Mana
Kirk Torrance ...
Noble
...
Sandy
Barry Te Hira ...
Mutt
...
Jedi
...
Lyel Timu ...
Rangimarie
...
Rusty
Calae Hignett-Morgan ...
Piripi
...
Dave
Te Rua Rehu-Martin ...
Murray
Niwa Whatuira ...
Michael
Lionel Wellington ...
Rip
Wesley Broadfoot ...
Nathan
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Storyline

A brilliant but troubled New Zealand chess champion finds purpose by teaching underprivileged children about the rules of chess and life.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Bravery is contagious See more »

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout, and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 July 2014 (New Zealand)  »

Also Known As:

Genesis  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

NZD 3,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$8,487 (USA) (1 April 2016)

Gross:

$61,505 (USA) (29 April 2016)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Actor Wayne Hapi who played "Ariki" had no previous acting experience before his debut in 'The Dark Horse', however as an ex gang-member he did have direct experience with the film's content. Wayne applied for an audition via email after Casting Director Yvette Reid placed a job listing at WINZ "seeking Maori Men aged 50-65yrs, tattoos and criminal records welcome!". Wayne was honoured with a nomination for Best Supporting Actor at the 2014 New Zealand Film awards. See more »

Goofs

In a chess lesson, Genesis identifies the square c4 as "the Spanish square" and b5 as "the Italian square." These are the squares to which white moves the king's bishop on the third move of the Giuoco Piano, or Italian Game, and the Ruy Lopez, or Spanish Game, respectively; he's got them backward. See more »

Quotes

Genesis: Burn the school down!
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Connections

Referenced in Talking Dead: Monster (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A quiet masterpiece of storytelling
13 January 2015 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Behind the beautiful cinematography, engaging and detailed performances, and deftly-paced editing is a master work of a screenplay. A wholly empathetic protagonist, with his wellbeing so delicately balanced, bombarded by obstacles. The stakes continue to rise, the subplots interweave seamlessly, with the whole story building to a perfectly weighted, moving, climax.

Once filmmakers could be just "good" or "interesting" and pull a crowd to the cinema to see their kitchen-sink dramas. The new Golden Age of television has put paid to that. We get great storytelling and interesting ideas pushing boundaries all the time, delivered on-call to our living rooms. if filmmakers are not making blockbusters, or special effect laden sensual experiences, then the stories must be wonderful and totally captivating to get a crowd in the car and front up with the ticket price. There's no place to hide...

This film is a great reminder of why there is still a place at the cinema for a low budget, domestic drama, they just need to be this good!


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