A powerful – not for the feint of heart – movie is being screened in Newport Thursday, September 17th, 5:30pm at Oregon Coast Community College.
It’s entitled “Once Were Warriors,” a highly acclaimed and award winning film that tells the story of a south Pacific village family that moves to a large city in New Zealand where their dreams of a better life sinks into a vicious cycle of rage, domestic violence, alcoholism and emotional scarring.
Inter-cultural abrasiveness, over time, marginalizes the family, especially economically. The family’s financial situation deteriorates after the head of the household loses his job – and takes up drinking to block it all out. Verbal abuse and domestic violence soon rise up and consumes the family with anger and despair.
In the end it proves too much for all of them. However, prior to what appears to be the final version of what qualifies as a “new normal” for the family, there are strategic moments of intervention by distant family members, as well as by one of the family sons, that give glimmers of family nurturing, hope and compassion.
Extremely well filmed with acting so vividly honest and mind-wrenching, “Once Were Warriors” is very painful but also uplifting. It graphically portrays how a native Maori family migrates from their native home culture, into a white industrial environment, and then back again, find life’s deeper meaning through family bonds, empathy and understanding.
“Once Were Warriors,” based on a a book by author Alan Duff, will be shown at 5:30pm, Thursday, September 17th at Oregon Coast Community College – Newport Campus – at South Beach.
Following the film, guest speakers will discuss the experiences and behaviors of those in the film and relate it to American families who are tossed and flung about from our recent, yet still current, hard economic times. Also how these families suffer alcohol and/or drug addiction and find that domestic violence has come through their front door with terribly destructive effects on adults, but most severely on children.
The speakers, from My Sisters Place and Crossroads Non-violent Education, will describe how the Maori family became battered and then set adrift in a seemingly never-ending emotional storm, left alone to figure things out for themselves – sometimes successfully, most often not.
The speakers will give insight into how to prevent domestic violence – both physical and emotional and to find a way out of the darkness.
Again, the screening of “Once Were Warriors” is September 17th, 5:30pm at the Newport Campus of Oregon Coast Community College. Refreshments will be served.