In her first fiction feature – the first by a Māori woman in Aotearoa New Zealand – Mita further interrogates the cultural tensions wrought by colonisation. Anzac Wallace gives a strong performance as Rewi Rapana, who returns home to his once thriving settlement, Te Mata, and befriends local woman Kara (activist Eva Rickard in one of two film roles). With production design by artist Ralph Hotere, and featuring Geoff Murphy and Temuera Morrison. Film courtesy of Te Tumu Whakaata Taonga New Zealand Film Commission.
Preceded by Bastion Point: Day 507 (Merata Mita, Leon Narbey and Gerd Pohlmann, 1980) 27 mins – G.
Focuses on day 507 of the Ngāti Whātau Ōrākei tribe’s protest for land rights as they are forcibly evicted from their traditional home of Takaparawhau (Bastion Point) in Auckland.
Preserved and made available by Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision. Courtesy of Mita Estate.
Also screening on Wed 26 July
Power in the Collective: The key works of Merata Mita
Patu! (1983) – Wed 26 Jul, 7pm
Mauri (1988) – Wed 26 Jul, 9.10pm
About the program
As a key campaigner for Māori creative control in the film industry, Merata Mita (1941–2010) was the force behind an expansive body of work including the first fiction feature to be written and directed by a woman in Aotearoa New Zealand: Mauri (1988). As director, producer, writer and actor, Mita’s ground-breaking influence on the film and television industries in Aotearoa New Zealand from the 1970s onwards cannot be overstated.
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About Melbourne Cinémathèque
Australia's longest-running film society, Melbourne Cinémathèque screens significant works of international cinema in the medium they were created, the way they would have originally screened.
Melbourne Cinémathèque is self-administered, volunteer-run, not-for-profit and membership-driven.