Two Cars, One Night

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Two Cars, One Night
Two Cars, One Night.jpg
Directed byTaika Waititi
Produced byVanessa Alexander
Catherine Fitzgerald
Ainsley Gardiner
Written byTaika Waititi
StarringRangi Ngamoki
Hutini Waikato
Music byCraig Sengelow
CinematographyAdam Clark
Edited byOwen Ferrier-Kerr
Blueskin Films Ltd.
Defender Films
New Zealand Film Commission
Release date
Running time
11 minutes
CountryNew Zealand[1]
External video
video icon Two Cars, One Night, full film, YouTube video, on the official Searchlight Pictures channel.[2]

Two Cars, One Night is a 2004 New Zealand short film written and directed by Taika Waititi.[3]

The film is about two young boys and a girl meeting in the carpark of a rural pub in Te Kaha, New Zealand. What at first seems to be a relationship based on rivalry soon develops into a potential friendship.


One night, the Te Kaha hotel pub carpark is parked by a sedan with nine-year-old boys Ed and Romeo in it.

As time flies, another sedan neighbors them, with the two adults, Koro and Tangata, exiting, leaving the child, 12-year-old Polly, alone. Romeo teases her, then vice versa. More time flies, and Romeo decides to know her more. In her car, Romeo finds out Polly has a plastic ring. As the parents exit the pub, Romeo and Polly express farewell. Polly gives the ring to Romeo, so that he will remember her, confiding that he will keep his promise to keep the ring. Romeo smiles and stands still looking at the car as it drives off.


In 2017, Jacob Oller of Film School Rejects praised the film's humour, writing that the film "allowed Waititi the perfect (ahem) vehicles for his brand of undercutting comedy, a couple of brash kids, in a quiet, poignant setting."[4]



In 2019, after receiving an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay with Jojo Rabbit, Waititi said jokingly “Losing to Andrea Arnold [at the Oscars], it took me probably 13 years just to get over that. Because what she did to me back then, it was disrespectful. Although Wasp was an incredible short film, she didn’t need to do that. And look at me now, Andrea,” the director deadpanned. “I played the long game, man. I played the long game.”[6]


  1. ^ Ebert 2006, p. 524.
  2. ^ Ham, Julie (19 August 2020). "Flying Start Film Studies" (PDF). Bilborough College. Retrieved 23 February 2021.
  3. ^ "Two Cars, One Night (2004)". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Baseline & All Movie Guide. 2016. Archived from the original on 6 March 2016. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  4. ^ Oller, Jacob (1 December 2017). "Taika Waititi's Oscar-Nominated 'Two Cars, One Night' Showcases Quiet Sweetness". Film School Rejects. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  5. ^ OnFilm Magazine, March 2004
  6. ^ Grobar, Matt (13 January 2020). "Taika Waititi Discusses 'Jojo Rabbit' Oscar Noms & Discovering Michael Fassbender's Comedic Chops On 'Next Goal Wins'". Deadline. Retrieved 22 January 2020.

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