Set in a rural Maori community in the Hokianga region of Northland in Aotearoa (New Zealand), The Strength of Water is the story of Maori twins Kimi and Melody, who are forced apart when a mysterious stranger arrives in their small town.
The film features Nancy Brunning (Crooked Earth, When Loves Comes) and a cast of locals. The project was developed at the Sundance and Binger workshops.
In a world where hundreds of indigenous languages are dead or facing extinction there is a bright, shining hope: Kohanga Reo, Maori “language nests”.
Veteran filmmaker Tainui Stephens documents the ground-breaking indigenous educational movement, and the woman behind it, in a feature documentary screening at ImageNative, the Toronto native arts festival.
Kohanga Reo is based on the simple but powerful principle of totally immersing pre-school children in native language and values. After 25 years, the program is recognized worldwide as a turning point for revival of Maori language and culture and an inspiration for language survival programs worldwide.
The model has been replicated successfully in other native communities, including Hawaiian Punana Leo.
Let My Whakapapa Speak
16 Oct 08, 1:00PM
Al Green Theatre
They are the two magic words in the story of how a struggling Maori language was pulled back from the brink of extinction: ‘kohanga reo’.
Tuhoe Country Docu-drama
Kiwi director Vincent Ward (Map of the Human Heart, What Dreams May Come) revisits his 1978 documentary, about a Maori kuia, in his latest feature.
In Spring One Plants Alone was Ward’s second film – a verite portrait of Te Puhi, an 80 year-old woman caring for her schizophrenic adult son in rural Urewera.
30 years later Ward returns to the scene to re-envision her story as a cursed Tuhoe princess.
The 2008 version is a personal docu-drama, narrated by Ward, melding dramatic re-enactments with original footage.
Rain of the Children trailer
A Tale of the Tuhoe
could give Maori on both sides of the Tasman a new insight in to their past
Vincent Ward unveils latest long-term labour of love
New Zealand Herald
Australian-based Maori performed a passionate powhiri on the red carpet
Vincent Ward’s ghost story
Sunday Star Times
epic act of “director’s cut” reworking
Little Town – Big Films
Wairoa Maori Film Festival
Matariki Queen’s Birthday Weekend
30 May – 2 June 2008
The tiny town of Wairoa (population around 4,000) on the East Coast of Aotearoa’s North Island opens its third Maori film festival with tributes to indigenous film pioneers, classic features, and a feast of international and local native films.
Opening night kicks off with the kiwi comedy classic Came a Hot Friday, starring Maori comic icon Billy T. James (1948-1991) and Don Selwyn (1936 – 2007) in an early acting role.
Audiences will see rare screenings of Barry Barclay’s feature documentary The Neglected Miracle, exploring indigenous genetic conservation initiatives around the world, and episodes from his landmark television series Tangata Whenua.
Recent dramatic features include Native American filmmaker Sterlin Harjo’s Four Sheets to the Wind, Taika Waititi’s Eagle vs Shark and Peter Burger’s The Tattooist, alongside older work such as Sam Pillsbury’s Crooked Earth and Gaylene Preston’s Ruby & Rata.
Closing night feature is Geoff Murphy’s classic Utu starring Anzac Wallace and the late great Wi Kuki Kaa.
Short film programs include Pollywood 08, a collection of shorts by Pacific Islander filmmakers, A Little Bit of Black Business from native Australia, Maori Short Films, and the Matariki Short Film Collection, an eclectic mix of seven indigenous shorts from Aotearoa, USA and Australia.
Wairoa Maori Film Festival goes on the road to Auckland, Wellington and Taumaranui later this year.
Maori TV’s Julian Wilcox pitches WITBC
Maori Television hosts the first gathering of global indigenous TV executives in Aotearoa 26–28 March 2008. The World Indigenous Television Broadcasting Conference (WITBC) kicks off in Auckland with three days of presentations by broadcasters from Canada, Ireland, Scotland, Taiwan, United States, Australia, Wales, and Aotearoa.
WITBC ’08 inaugurates an international association of indigenous TV broadcasters and presents its first lifetime achievement award.
Maori TV launches its new Maori language channel, Te Reo, to coincide with the event.
PIs MIA @ WITBC
NZ: Pacific representation ‘misses out’ at indigenous media conference
26 Mar 08
Just two Pacific Islands will be represented at the opening today of the world’s first indigenous television network conference.
Fiji and Hawaii are the only delegates from 22 Pacific Island states and territories at WIBTC 08 …
Registration costs at the conference are around NZ$1600, raising barriers to Pacific Islanders already facing high airfares from remote communities.”
1944 – 2008
Kiwi film-maker Barry Barclay dies
Stuff 19 Feb 08
Prominent New Zealand film-maker Barry Barclay – the first Maori to direct a feature film – has died of a heart attack aged 63.
Filmmaker Barry Barclay dies
TV One 19 Feb 08
The New Zealand Film Commission says Barclay played a major role as a passionate advocate of indigenous voices telling their own stories.
Kua hinga te totara, te kauri …
The mighty trees of the forest have fallen.
Barry (Bazza) Barclay passed away last night in Opononi, Hokianga.
The last of my mentors (and the first) is gone!
Aue … they are such big shoes we can never fill.
My first ever job on a feature film was Barry’s and what a crazy ride that was. He was a mentor for me too. Haere, haere, haere e te matua, hoki atu ki o mātua tipuna …
Barry’s mana’o greatly influenced how we approached and spoke about documentary-making (we don’t “take” anyone’s picture; they give it to us). Because of him we even write up our release forms and clearances differently (who really owns the images on tape?).
NA MAKA O KA AINA
TWO ELDERS OF INDIGENOUS FILM PASSED ON THIS PAST YEAR.
Both were prolific filmmakers and teachers who broke new ground and mentored the next generation of talent.
1932 – 2007
1936 – 2007