Maori film director, writer, painter, comedian and actor named as one of “ten new directors to watch”, Taika Waititi has been honoured by his alma mater, Victoria University. Ka pai! My favourite Waititi film is ‘Boy’. I taught for a number of years at a small rural school in the Eastern Bay of Plenty, not far removed from the district Waititi’s film is played out in and this made ‘Boy’ more special to me. I suspect a lot of white Kiwis will not have watched the film with my eyes and this is a pity because what was presented was a snapshot of what life is like ‘out there’. For each of the young people who lived, played, fought and went to school at Waihau Bay (Raukokore in the film) I can picture one of my pupils from those many years ago ‘just down the coast’. Whanau dominated things, everybody struggled but wanted for little (other than material possessions) and everybody had dreams of other places. To use the vernacular it was ‘hard case’, and at the same time touching.And my son joined the ‘Crazy Horse Gang’– hahaha!
Look around for the ‘Boy’ DVD and take a look- I’m sure there’ll be enjoyment in it for you.