Re: [-empyre-] speaking of film.. and global art industry

| >speaking of  film - one of the first nz films i saw was  Lee Tamahori's
| >"once were warriors"  -a look at  a contemporary Maori family in urban New
| >Zealand, replete with domestic violence, amazing  intensity,  intimacy , and
| >hope.. . another  was "heavenly creatures" the true story about the two
| >white teenage girls who killed one of their mothers with a brick. .. both
| >great insightful movies.. how were they received locally ?

an indication of how it was received locally: i was in high school when once
were warriors was released, and i remember my english teacher telling us "go
and see this film". it was and still is regarded highly. i caught it on tv the
other month and was struck how only the surface of the film had dated, it was
still a contemporary film even with its twangy soundtrack. i still love how it
ends with an END that smacks you in the face. it knew its importance.

heavenly creatures was for a long time my favourite film. i think i scared my
mother by watching it three times in a row (for those who don't know it, it's
about a kid and her friend killing her mother). these two films don't show
anything that nzers don't know about their country. they know its dark side
fairly well, and the arts from nz have for a while (not sure about now)
acknowledged the darkness. a comment from someone in germany about the toi toi
toi exhibition a while back was that so many of the painters used black. this
idea was sent up a little later with the more colourful 'bright paradise'

i see postcards of nz in the shops and i see them like how i see photos of
myself as a child. i know that's me because i've been taught that's what i
looked like as a little boy, and likewise the blue sea, white sand vista, i see
that as being a photo of nz by rote. but in all my years running to the bush or
sea any chance i've got, my idea of what nz looks like is dense, fairly dark,
usually incredibly wind torn and fairly remote even to me. not so much a cuddle
from a mum, but a nod from a dad.

but darkness isn't bleak, in fact maori cosmology eloquently describes phases
of darkness like how native canadians can describe snow. it's not an evil, but
a space i've always imagined to be about creation and contemplation, productive

do other people see the dark or have i got my hands over my eyes?


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