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26 JULY 2011

Mana Waka: feature-length documentary showing the re-building of the seven wakataua/war canoes of the Great Maori Fleet

"Mana Waka, working title Canoe, is a feature–length documentary made to launch New Zealand's 1990 centennial celebrations. The documentary has a fascinating history. Princess Te Puea Herangi of the Turangawaewae Marae, Ngauruawahia, was a great Maori leader committed to work that would uphold, and be used for the benefit of, the Maori people. During the late 1930s she conceived the idea of celebrating the 1940 centennial of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi by re–building the seven wakataua/war canoes of the Great Fleet, According to legend these canoes had journeyed from Hawaiki to Aotearoa some 25 generations previously. Princess Te Puea asked stills photographer R.G.H. (Jim) Manley, who had not previously made a film, to film the re–building, and he did so over a period of three years. Up north in the Puketi Forest, a great kauri tree was felled for the building of the Nga–toki–matawhaorua canoe which is now housed at Waitangi. Two totara trees from the Oruanui Forest provided the timber for the canoes that were carved and built at Turangawaewae."

(Helen Martin, 8 July 2011, Onfilm Magazine)

Fig.1 Still from "Mana Waka": NZ 1990 Documentary prod co Nga Kaitiaki o Te Puea Estate and the Turangawaewae Marae Trust dir Merata Mita camera R.G.H. Manly (filmed 1937 – 1940) ed Annie Collins kai korero/narrator Tukuroirangi Morgan film preservation Te Tumu Whakaata Taonga The New Zealand Film Commission, Ngā Kaitiaki Ō Ngā Taonga Whitiāhua The New Zealand Film Archive, NFU Laboratory, NFU Sound finecut Nga Kaitiaki o Te Marae o Turangawaewae sound Merata Mita, David Madigan, Chris Verberg, Mike Hedges, Annie Collins. 85 minutes.

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TAGS

1930s193719401990Annie CollinsAotearoa New Zealandcanoecarvingcentennialcraftcultural heritagedocumentaryfeature-length documentaryfilm • Great Fleet • Hawaiki • heritageIndigenous • Jim Manley • kauri • Mana Waka (film) • MaoriMaori peopleMerata MitaNew Zealand cinemaNew Zealand on Screen • Nga Kaitiaki O Nga Taonga Whitiahua The New Zealand Film Archive • Ngauruawahia • NZ Film Archive • Oruanui Forest • photographerpreservation • Princess Te Puea Herangi • Puketi Forest • Te Tiriti o Waitangi • Te Tumu Whakaata Taonga The New Zealand Film Commission • totara • Treaty of Waitangi • Tukuroirangi Morgan • Turangawaewae Marae Trust • Waikato • wakataua • war canoes

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
05 JUNE 2007

Ten Canoes: an allegory about respect and community

"Bout time to tell you a story, eh? Then I'll tell you one of ours...

It is longtime ago. It is our time, before you other mob came from cross the ocean...longtime before then. The rains been good and ten of the men go on the swamp, to hunt the eggs of gumang, the magpie goose. One of the men, the young fella, has a wrong love, so the old man tell him a story...a story of the ancient ones, them wild and crazy ancestors who come after the spirit time, after the flood that covered the whole land...

It's a good story, this story I'm gonna be tellin' you 'bout the ancient ones. There's more wrong love in this story, and plenty spears too, and plenty wives...too many wives if you ask me...a beautiful young one and a bit of a jealous one and the older wise one and even more wives than that.

And there's plenty happens in this story...there's a stranger comes and one of them wives goes missin' and there's a man with a belly big as a mountain. There's sorcery and magic too, and a wrong spear in the wrong body, and more spears and bad spirits. And even that's not everything that's happening in this story.

Ahh, you gotta see this story of mine cause it'll make you laugh, even if you're not a blackfella. Might cry a bit too eh? But then you laugh some more...cause this story is a big true story of my people. True thing.

The film Ten Canoes employs a cyclical structure to represent its Indigenous Australian world view. This is done through using a story within a story that works an allegory about respect and community."
Rolf De Heer (Director) & Peter Djigirr (Co–Director)

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TAGS

AboriginalallegoryAustraliaAustralian Aboriginecanoecommunitycycliccyclic narrativecyclical narrative • De Heer • Djigirr • dramafilmIndigenousIndigenous Australiansmobnarrativeparablerespect • Ten Canoes
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