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Waru

Following the death of a child, eight Maori women are confronted by guilt, pride and defeat but will ultimately risk everything for the greater good of their community.

Eight female Maori directors have each contributed a ten-minute vignette, presented as a continuous shot in real time, that unfolds around the tangi (funeral) of a small boy (Waru) who died at the hands of his caregiver.

Charm: Queen of the kauta (kitchen), Charm learns to accept that she can’t change the world.
Written & Directed by – Briar Grace-Smith
Lead actress – Tanea Heke

Anahera: A teacher struggles to keep face, hiding infidelities and guilt over Waru’s death.
Written & Directed by – Casey Kaa
Lead actress – Roimata Fox

Mihi: A solo parent learns to listen to her children.
Written & Directed by – Ainsley Gardiner
Lead actress – Ngapaki Moetara

Em: A young woman hits rock bottom and realises that the only way is up.
Written & Directed by – Katie Wolfe
Lead actress – Awhina-Rose Ashby

Ranui: A kuia relinquishes Iwi pride in order that her mokopuna might find spiritual peace.
Written & Directed by – Renae Maihi
Lead actress – Kararaina Rangihau

Kiritapu: A young wahine Māori reporter risks everything to set the story straight.
Written & Directed by – Chelsea Cohen
Lead actress – Maria Walker

Mere: A teenage girl draws strength from her ancestors to expose her abuser.
Written & Directed by – Paula Jones
Lead actress – Acacia Hapi

Titty & Bash: A woman risks life to break the cycle of violence.
Written by – Josephine Stewart-Te Whiu
Directed by – Awanui Simich-Pene
Lead actresses – Miriama McDowell & Amber Curreen