Movie Review: Once Were Warriors w/ Dr. Daen

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Once Were Warriors
Genre: Crime, Drama
Rated: RTime: 102 min
Release Date: May 4, 2012

Director: Lee Tamahori
Writers: Riwia Brown , Alan Duff  (Novel)
Starring: Rena Owen, Temuera Morrison, and Mamaengaroa Kerr-Bell (Full cast and crew HERE)

A family descended from Maori warriors is bedeviled by a violent father and the societal problems of being treated as outcasts.

Ana: Once Were Warriors isn’t your typical HEA kind of movie. This movie is far from that. Not only does it dig deep down to the core of things but it throws things at you, and when I mean throw, I mean the movie literally picks up heaps of rocks and rubble and throws it at you with so much force that CC Sabathia would be damned proud. Now once all that rocks and rubble hits you, you’re stunned with feels. So. Many. FEELS. It’s unreal. I cry every time. 

(For those of you scratching your heads wondering who CC Sabathia is, see image below.)

Daen: Sigh the feels, oh the feels *preaching the feels* oh god they throw you around like a roller coaster tycoon!

Ana: Now, we don’t want to ruin the movie for any of you so we’ll talk “AROUND” stuff. So this review might be a bit cluttered and have you sitting there looking at the screen like, “WTF are these two talking about?! WHAT IS THIS RUBBISH!”  But I assure you, it is NOT rubbish… so please, keep your tomatoes at bay! I did my hair this morning and I think I look good ;)

Daen: Pffft, she is good! *uhem amazinggggugh* anyways so … oh I have no idea how to even begin this..

Ana:  Well, that’s why I’m here sweety. Let’s start at the beginning. *waves Daen ahead* now, now, lets go… I shall hold your hand like a mother holds her childs hand. 
but, please, behave, I’m not against spankings.

Daen: Please I need help! don’t let go of my hand please I’m like a lost kitten.

Ana: Let’s start at the beginning. Once Were Warrior opens up showing clips and pieces of each of the characters that play an important role in the movie. The main characters so to speak. You’ve got Rena Owen who plays Beth Heke: Mother and Wife. Beth was born and raised into a high Maori family. Falls in love with a man who is below their stature and has to pick between her family and the man she loves, so of course she chooses the man. Said man is Jake Heke, aka Jake the Muss (Temuera Morrison.) Now, because Jake is Daen’s favorite character ever, I’ll let him speak a bit on him.

Daen: Seriously? wait, seriously? me? I don’t think you are ready for this Ana… I am already about to blow this whole review out of proportion I could make just this part nothing but the review. Jake, is well how can I use the kindest of words I can possibly think of.. a JACKASS.

But enough about that asshole, back to the beginning…in the beginning it looks like a sweet loving and caring family with pretty much a hot and heavy scene but then shortly after, things start to turn for the worse.

Ana: lol. And by Daen’s favorite character, I mean he hates him with all his might. Jake Heke: Father and husband has some….interesting qualities… or lack there of. He’s a drunk, hot tempered, abusive and oblivious. Drunken bar fights for daaaaays.

Towards the middle of the movie, you’ve already learned who the characters are and what roles they play. Aside from Jake and Beth, you’ve got Grace Heke (Mamaengaroa Kerr-Bell), one out of five children. Beth is the eldest girl only 13 years old and takes after her mother. And by that I mean, she speaks her mind. And according to Jake is “too damned lippy.” Grace loves to write and tell stories, plays the big sisterly role well, and… well I’ll leave it at that. Watch the movie!

Daen: Grace, oh gracy grace. Many things can said about Grace, she is just a kind, sweet, and loving character just trying to make it through all of these hard times. She seems to only have true friend outside of home Toot. He doesn’t play the biggest role in the movie but I think it is worth mentioning, he was the only that kept her company and let that be her escape from reality. When all she wanted to do was see her brother.

Ana: Boogie Heke (Taungaroa Emile), son of Jake and Beth. Boogie is still growing, learning who he is. He gets into trouble in the beginning of the movie and is sent away soon after. Although he doesn’t play a vital role in the movie, he’s mentioned here and there and you can clearly see the transformation from beginning to end.

Nig Heke (Julian Arahanga) son of Jake and Beth. Nig also doesn’t play a vital role, but he is mentioned and shows a few times on screen. First born of Jake and Beth, he doesn’t play the
“big brother” role very well. Worried about himself and mixing himself in with the local gang: TOA.

I can’t say I hated these two characters, because I didn’t. But I didn’t agree with what was going on. Boogie is understandable as he wasn’t even there for 75% of the movie, but as for Nig. Totally just for himself and not caring about his “home”. He has siblings, but towards the end of the movie realizes all too late that he should have been “home” more and watching out for his siblings.

Daen: Boogie, at the start seemed to of been going through a lot of stuff. uhem family stuff. So he started hanging out with the wrong crowd and always seemed to of been sent home by the cops. So he ended up in court and surprise got sent to a correctional facility.

Ana: The ending of the movie is a killer. But the characters grow through this movie and you can see it, no matter how slowly the development is, how slowly the eyes are finally opening to see what’s going on around them. It’s sad, but it’s true.

Okay… most of the characters develop into different characters. Grow, you might say… all but one… cause, well….
Yeah…. He’s all about that blunt force trauma.

Daen: Jake never learns anything from the start! I mean … all bronze and brains! Ugh’  like I said before I could talk about this fool all damned day. *kajsndijas mdas das das dasd !!!!!* my frustration!

Ana: Well, that about sums it up for our movie review. Like we said, we didn’t want to give away any spoilers, so… instead… we give you character details and a bit (if a tiny bit) about the setting of the movie.

Daen:  *Ana here: Daen is speechless*

Ana: So, yeah.. Daen has nothing else to add on… because he loved that movie that much. heh. Now on to the rating! I’ve seen this movie a handful of times and it never fails to pull the feels out of me. It’s heartbreaking and humbling all at once. The acting is great, to me at least, cause I could never pull off drunken brawls (lel). So, for that, I’d give this movie 8 stars! What say you Daen?

Daen: Hmm, I would most likely give a 7.5 cause I couldn’t bare watching jake any longer with his madhouse.

Ana: Combining our ratings, the new rating is: 7.75 stars!

Thanks for joining us! Want us to review a movie for you? Let us know in the comments below! Also, don’t forget to leave a comment about our review. Especially if you’ve seen it :)

Daen: Speechless with so many… Thanks for having me ANA!
Ana: It's okay's okay. 


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