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Pecking Order

Director Slavko Martinov's life-affirming documentary shines a spotlight on the highly competitive world of chicken breeding in New Zealand, where a flock of passionate young animal lovers are threatening to usurp the well-feathered old guard. The film goes behind the scenes of the Christchurch Poultry, Bantam and Pigeon Club, which has a proud history stretching back almost 150 years. Under the firm leadership of the club's president, Doug, the "chook fanciers" go into battle in the hope of impressing hard-to-please judge Ian. The hopefuls include current champion Brian, a chicken whisperer called Sarah and a clucky young upstart, Rhys, who believes his bird is destined to snag the top prize. As the national show approaches, youth and experience go head-to-head, culminating in a final judging that will determine the year's pecking order.