Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1990s Once Were Warriors (1995)

Once Were Warriors (1995)

Told in a bold, unflinching manner, director Lee Tamahori’s award-winning drama grips and fascinates as it lifts the lid on ghetto Maori life in New Zealand.

Rena Owen is drainingly moving as the put-upon housewife, Beth, pushed physically and mentally to the brink while trying to hold her family together, bearing the brunt of her unemployed husband’s drink-fuelled frustrations.

Tamahori’s bleak film is raw, brutal cinema with a unique voice, showing a people adrift from their cultural roots and trapped in an urban nightmare of cheap housing and gangland controlled precincts.

One of the most pertinent and important works to emerge from Down Under in years.

Beth Heke
Rena Owen
Jake Heke
Temuera Morrison
Grace Heke
Mamaengaroa Kerr-Bell
Nig Heke
Julian Arahanga
Boogie Heke
Taungaroa Emile
Polly Heke
Rachael Morris Jr
Huata Heke
Joseph Kairau
Cliff Curtis
Pete Smith
George Henare

Lee Tamahori