Portrait of a Lady On Fire

Past Event28 Jul - 2 Aug 2019

Portrait of a Lady On Fire

No longer available

The Civic


Winner of Best Screenplay and the Queer Palm at Cannes, Céline Sciamma’s striking eighteenth-century tale of romantic obsession burns bright with female desire and the craft of a masterful filmmaker. 
Between Water Lillies, Tomboy and Girlhood, outstanding French director Céline Sciamma has explored notions of gender and identity, especially for adolescent or younger girls, through a distinctively female prism. As diverse as her films have been, all of which have screened at NZIFF, none prefigured her ravishing and bewitching Portrait of a Lady on Fire, considered by many as the best film in competition at Cannes. 
In a radical departure from her earlier work, Sciamma ventures back to the late 1700s and to majestic coastal Brittany to recount the tale of Marianne and Héloïse, and of the portrait that engenders their encounter. Marianne, an artist, has been commissioned by Héloïse’s mother, a countess, to paint her daughter’s portrait. Fresh out of the convent, Héloïse is already betrothed to a Milanese aristocrat, whom she’s never met, and the portrait is destined for her future husband as testament to her charms. None too pleased with this custom or her situation, Héloïse has already refused to sit for another portraitist. The countess therefore demands subterfuge: Marianne must pose as a companion to Héloise by day and capture her likeness on canvas from memory at night…  
While alert to period detail and historical social mores, the film is no fusty academic reconstruction. It even allows for slight anachronism – the intermingling of classes seems from a more modern era. But this intricately composed work anchors its truth in poetic realms. Gazes intersect and behold, passions ignite, and desire etches the bodies, hearts and souls of lovers whom society’s dictates will irrevocably force apart. 

For the full NZIFF programme visit nziff.co.nz

NZ International Film Festival 2019 :

Ticket Pricing

A Coded : Sessions starting after 5pm weekdays and all weekend sessions (unless otherwise indicated)

Ticketmaster is the official ticketing agent for all ticketed events at Auckland Live.

Earlybird (Until end of day 17 July)
Film Society/Film Industry Guilds/Nurses
Community Services Card
Senior (60+)
Children (15 and under)

Ten-Trip Pass - $155

The Ten-Trip Pass consists of a unique barcode that can be used to purchase tickets to any screening, subject to seat availability (passes are not tickets and do not guarantee admission), and excluding 3D films, Special Events and Live Cinema performances.  Passes can be purchased and redeemed for tickets in advance online, via the phone or the Aotea or Civic Box Offices.  Passes can also be redeemed on the day at all venues, subject to seat availability.

After purchasing your pass online, you will need to download your Print-at-Home ticket and use the unique barcode number to redeem your pass for tickets to individual sessions.  (The barcode is issued immediately when purchased at the Box Office or via phone).  Once all ten tickets have been redeemed, the barcode will expire.


Get Ten-Trip Pass

Concession Discounts

Students, Film Society members, Industry Guild members and Community Service Card holders are entitled to purchase one ticket per session at the discount rate. Student/Membership /CSC ID is required – please ensure you bring it with you to the venue to present to staff on request; failure to do so will result in the full price being charged for attendance. Film Society “Three Film Sampler” holders are not entitled to the concession discount.

Please note: We are unable to accept any vouchers unless marked NZIFF 2019.