Te Matakite o Aotearoa

Last night at Nga Taonga Sound and Vision there was a special screening of Te Matakite o Aotearoa, Geoff Steven´s 1975 documentary chronicling the Māori land march.

The Māori Land march began on Sunday 13th September from Te Hapua Marae, New Zealand’s northern-most marae. After six months of planning, 50 marchers left Te Hāpua in the far north on 14 September for the 1000-km walk to Wellington. Rallying behind the catch-cry of ‘Not one more acre of Maori land’, the march quickly grew in strength. As it approached towns and cities, local people joined in to offer moral support. By helping to politicise large numbers of Māori, the hīkoi had an impact far beyond its original intention, it represented a reassertion of Māori identityThroughout the powerful observational documentary, marchers and supporters give reasons for their involvement. The march is masterfully documented, with the film emphasising the spiritual significance of the march, and the physical hardships of its participants.

Not one more acre of Maori land!

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Geoff Steven is a prominent New Zealand director, his career spans films, television and photography. He has directed and produced a number of acclaimed films and television shows. He produced a long run of documentaries, before becoming a TV executive and then an art photographer. He now heads the our place – world heritage project. You can check out his work here!

Check out this Web photo documentary of the 1975 Maori Land March, with photos by Christian Heinegg, newspaper articles by Vivian Hutchinson and poems by Hone Tuwhare.

Image courtesy of Christian Heinegg.
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