Menu

Films Showing

Whale Rider

Whale Rider

Whale Rider

2002 / 101min / DCP

DIRECTOR: NIKI CARO

CAST: KEISHA CASTLE-HUGHES, RAWIRI PARATENE

Based on Witi Ihimaera’s 1986 coming-of-age novel, the enormously appealing work of Maori magic-realism from New Zealand was an unexpected arthouse hit on initial release. A struggle between tradition and transition revolves around 12-year-old Pai (Keisha Castle-Hughes, a revelation), who believes she may be linked to the legendary Paikea, the whale rider, even as her tribe’s aging chief, her grandfather (Rawiri Paratene), stubbornly maintains that only a male heir can follow him. “The genius of the movie is the way is side-steps all of the obvious clichés of the underlying story and makes itself fresh, observant, tough and genuinely moving.”—Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times