PECKING ORDER

Cert PG 88min Stars 3

Flock to this tasty New Zealand documentary which sheds a light on the drama of competitive chicken shows.

As in any beauty pageant the competitors are thoroughly groomed and fed on a diet of bird seed, though possibly with bigger servings than their human counterparts. Being plump here is encouraged.

It’s an increasingly tense affair as well seasoned veterans and raw youths of the Christchurch Poultry Club vie to knock the champ off their perch at the national show.

Plus there’s fowl play in the committee room where a battle between modernisers and traditionalists threatens the existence of 148-year-old club.

Feathers are ruffled as members scratch around for votes, and the simmering hotpot of politics are brought to boil with an attempted presidential coup.

Though the politics are vicious the enthusiasm for the show birds is endearing and the tone stays jolly throughout. This warm and affectionate portrait of semi-rural life offers a clucking good time for everyone.

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