whale rider guide
Central to the story of Whale Rider is this relationship between Koro and his granddaughter Pai. Set in a small coastal village in New Zealand. Pai comes into her own by juggling expectations and desires. Cast: Keisha Castle-Hughes, Rawiri Paratene, Vicky Haughton, Cliff Curtis, Grant Roa says writer-director Niki Caro on the commentary track for Whale Rider. something to say, looking at relationships between generations and individuals. page Task 4: Whales and our relationship with the natural world page 13 The narrative focus stays with Paikea and Koro throughout the film. 2 The film is based on the book The Whale Rider by Witi Ihimaera. Ihimaera was It's not just about a community that is faced with a particular problem of ancestry and.
They cannot see a tekoteko panel or a canoe being carved. They cannot take part in the schooling of future chiefs. It is the women who do the cooking, who do the karanga welcome for visitors to the marae.
Women do not wear trousers on a marae. The women sing the waiata songs at the close of each speech, the men do the haka war dance. A woman cannot be chief.
A kura school to instruct the youngsters of the tribe in the way of the ancient ones. And youngsters means males. Paikea does the karanga [welcome chant] for the manuhiri visitors while Nanny Flowers does the karanga for the tangatawhenua hosts.
Koro relents and suggests that Paikea can stay, but only if she sits at the back. She leaves, and learns the chant by listening through the windows, learns the taiaha [fighting stick or spear] from her uncle. She bests one of the boys at the taiaha, on the marae [meeting place] grounds.
Koro is angry, yells at her for breaking tapu sacredness. She can do no good as far as he is concerned: Were she a boy, she would be the one. In the book this whole exchange is present, and yet not as obvious. The final test asked of the boys is one of endurance. Koro takes them out on a boat on the harbour, and explains how he was taught. The chief took a carved stone and threw it overboard. Whoever could return it would be the next chief. All the boys fail to retrieve it and it settles on the ocean floor.
She dives down, is gone for ages, and returns with the stone - and a crayfish for Koro. After the boys fail to return with the taonga treasure, i. Nevertheless she is still proud of her heritage, her family, and she writes a speech which she delivers partially in Maori. She leads the Maori Culture Group, and Koro is her special guest at the end of year concert. The audience is told that she won the school prize and the district prize for her speech.
The power in this part of the film is awesome. Dressed in the Culture Group 'costume', holding a small cup, her lips blackened traditionally, unruly hair partially tamed by a headband, she gives her speech. Dedicated to her Koro, who was not there, the empty chair in the front row. I broke that line, and it is nobody's fault it was broken" she says.
They're trying to protect her. One by one, the whales give up - if they can only get the king whale out, it will be fine, the others will follow.
But it is not to be. Paikea has other ideas… going down to the beach as the others leave, she greets the whale with a hongi. She climbs onto his back, she pats him, she talks to him, and she asks him to move. He looks at her. And she is out at sea on the back of a whale, and no one thinks to see her back.
Later her body is washed up on the beach. She lives, but is in a coma. In hospital, Koro waits at her bed, he is ready for her to be his successor. Paikea and Koro are on a waka, a war canoe - the one Paikea's father Porourangi never finished carving, the one she went to when she needed to think. She calls the chant for the paddlers to follow, to keep time to. Male and female must be joined together to keep the community strong.
Whale Rider handout - HUM
Paikea is the name of the heroine of the movie; she is called Kahutia in the book. Individual genealogy was remembered through the he rakau wakapapa-paranga, a board with a notch for each name and a blank space to denote when a male line of descent died out.
Maori children were taught about their ancestors by memorizing the names of the person represented by each notch. In modern times, the interior rooms of Maori meeting houses are places sacred to the ancestors.
Traditional myths and information about navigation are carved into the walls. Maori culture was male-dominated, with women generally serving in subordinate roles. One traditional function of Maori women was the "karanga," an exchange of calls that forms part of the Maori welcoming ceremony.
As a visiting group moves into the formal meeting area, they are welcomed by a call from a woman of the household or village. The visitors respond and the calls go back and forth as the newcomers enter the location where the meeting is to occur. Click here for a still picture of two women calling a karanga.
This link will take you to a video of the scene from the movie in which a karanga is called and answered as students are welcomed to the opening of their new school. The karanga occurs in the first 60 seconds of the segment. The Maori were fierce warriors and would, at times, dine on their conquered enemies. Many Maori carvings show fierce faces with stuck out tongues. See Example 1 and Example 2.
This will presage a scene in the film. Maori tattoos are famous for their intricate designs, size, and beauty. Called "Ta moko,", they consist of important symbols that help individuals express their unique identities. In the s, when Europeans first arrived in New Zealand, it was common for Maori to have tattoos covering their entire face.
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This custom died out by the end of the s, although Maori continued tattooing other parts of their bodies. The Ta moko was predominately for males and among traditional Maori it was rare that a woman would have tattoos. In recent years, tattooing has become common for both men and women.
The traditional Maori greeting is to press noses. This is called "hongi," a gesture that is the social equivalent of a handshake or a kiss on both cheeks. See Hongi Example 1 for an image of the traditional Maori greeting. This will presage several scenes in the movie. Gondwana, also called gondwanaland, was an ancient supercontinent that incorporated present-day New Zealand, Australia, Antarctica, South America, Africa, Arabia, Madagascar, and India.
It was assembled from parts of previous supercontinents by the Late Precambrian time, some million years ago. It started to break up about million years ago in the Early Jurassic Period.
New Zealand separated from the Antarctic portion of Gondwana about 82 million years ago, becoming geographically isolated. The plants and animals in New Zealand have evolved into forms that are slightly different from those on the other land masses. Before the Maori found New Zealand and colonized it a little more than a thousand years ago, the only mammals that inhabited New Zealand were two species of bats.
At that time, the fauna of New Zealand was dominated by insects and birds. In the absence of swift and agile mammalian predators, some species of birds had lost the ability to fly. The Maori found them to be easy prey and quickly killed them off.
Most are now extinct. Note that New Zealand is not shown. As in many cultures, the value of ancestors and a reverence for the past shape Maori consciousness. The characters struggle with several issues faced by indigenous people all over the globe as they seek to integrate what remains of their traditional ways into modern society. This conflict can be seen in Native American cultures today and is often the source of individual as well as tribal difficulties. Identify some of the scenes in which this struggle is shown.
These scenes include those that show Maori families as dysfunctional or Maori people abusing alcohol. For example, according to tradition, Paikea's father should stay in the village and assume the role of Chief. However, he wants to be an artist and this causes conflict which he resolves by moving to Germany.