Sam has entered a vicious self-destructive cycle that will lead to his death. When he returns from boarding school, he discovers that Ruth, his wheelchair-bound English grandmother, has moved into his house. Ruth is a former war photographer with a hunger for life and an irrepressible thirst for alcohol. Sam begins to feel confronted by her drinking wit and brashness. The two characters’ fierce temperaments spark a battle for supremacy that has Sam clinging to life again and Ruth facing death.
Born in Durban, South Africa, and raised in rural New Zealand, Matthew J. Saville has a 17-year career as a writer, director and actor in New Zealand film, theatre and television. His television credits include ‘Super City’, ‘Aftershock’, ‘Go Girls’, ‘The Most Fun You Can Have Dying’, ‘Spartacus’ and ‘The Almighty Johnsons’. Throughout his career in film, he has worked on ‘Scarfies’, ‘Lord of the Rings’, ‘The Water Horse’ and ‘Rage’. As a screenwriter, he has written for ‘Shortland Street’, ‘The Insiders Guide to Love’, ‘Hitch Hike’ and ‘Dive’, which premiered at the Telluride Film Festival and won Best Short Film at the Show Me Shorts Film Festival in 2014. Juniper’ is his first film as writer and director.