04 July 2024

This Year's Must See Movie

The local storytelling renaissance continues to impress, coinciding perfectly with this year’s Matariki celebrations, as Māori filmmaker Mike Jonathan makes his feature debut with “Ka Whawhai Tonu.”

Set in 1864 during the intense Battle of O Rākau in the mighty Waikato, the film portrays Chief Maniopoto’s last stand against colonial soldiers, a pivotal moment in our history. Through the perspective of two fictional teenagers caught in the turmoil, the narrative explores the enduring struggle.

Young Haki, born to a Pākehā soldier and a Māori mother, finds himself in a perilous situation when captured by Māori resistance fighters. However, his bond with Kōpū, the tribal medium to the war gods, alters their course. Amidst the chaos of war, their actions will determine the fate of their family and future generations.

I urge you to see “Ka Whawhai Tonu” on the big screen. Not only does it feature Temuera Morrison, a national taonga, but it also highlights wāhine warriors taking a prominent role alongside the rangitahi, all narrated through a powerful Māori lens.

This film deserves four-and-a-half stars for its compelling portrayal of Aotearoa’s stories.

See this film at:
Lido Cinema
Metro By HOYTS

Ka Whawhai Tonu - now showing at Lido Cinema, Metro by HOYTS.