Awahina Rose Ashby, Jonny Brugh, Amber Cureen
A groundbreaking film made by eight female Māori filmmakers, Waru (which means eight in Māori) is the story of a small New Zealand town coming to terms with a bitter tragedy – the death of a small boy at the hands of his caregiver.
The film consists of eight ten-minute long shorts, shot in a single take and set at exactly the same time with a female lead and a different director. Combined, these stories focus on the impact of the boy’s death in different corners of the community and tell a bold, authentic, multi-layered story about child abuse and the grief, guilt, bravery and redemption that ensue.
Giving audiences a fascinating glimpse into New Zealand’s contemporary Māori community, Waru explores themes of culture, custom and shame and is likely to form the basis of much discussion and debate; whether about its subject matter or the innovative, collaborative craft involved in its making.