TL;DR – A look at what happens when the competing interests of money and family collide
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
Today we get to dive back into the world of Pasifika Cinema as we explore a
film that takes on themes like tradition v modernity, brother v brother, money
v family, and honour v fun. However, all of this is tempered by a comedic style
that is unique to this part of the world and a heart that just shines.
So to set the scene, Popo (Ronnie Taulafo) and Alama (Vito Vito) are brothers
living in rural Samoa working for their father planting, harvesting, and
selling taro. Alama dreams of ways to make things easier for his family, even
if it does not always go right, and Popo just dreams of getting out of the
country. Well that opportunity arrives when they need labourers in New Zealand
and both Alama and Popo get the chance to earn some more money for home. They
spend their days picking kiwifruit and all is going well until the day they
have to leave and Popo runs off, with both his and all of Alama’s money.
TL;DR – It is a film that treads over very familiar ground, the ‘fish out of water’ scenario, however, it has a sense of humour and identity that elevates it above many of its contemporaries.
Score – 3 out of 5 stars
This is an interesting little film, I didn’t really know anything about it going in and had not seen a single trailer, so I was intrigued to see how it would end up. Three Wise Cousins tells the story of Adam (Neil Amituanai) who lives in suburban Auckland with his parents and is doing pretty much nothing other than playing his PlayStation and sleep. One day he stumbles across the woman of his dreams Mary (Gloria Ofa Blake) and overhears that she is only interested in island boys. So Adam decides to drop everything and visit his cousins Tavita (Fesuiai Viliamu) and Mose (Vito Vito) in Samoa to learn how to be an island boy so he can impress Mary. Of course, once Adam gets there he finds out it is more than he bargained on as Mose and Tavita play a kind of good cop, bad cop, to get Adam to … well then that is the crux of the film so I won’t spoil it here.