from Siapo Cinema
Siapo Cinema 2017 celebrates the people and culture of the Pacific with a vibrant festival of feature films, short films, music, documentaries, panel discussions and archival film compilations along with live performances and creative activities. The festival kicks off at our Wellington venue on Wednesday, 20 September and runs through to Saturday, 30 September.

Highlights of the programme include:

One Thousand Ropes

A powerful character drama from Tusi Tamasese about a father reconnecting with his youngest daughter and together, putting to rest the ghosts that haunt them. This film will screen at 7pm on Wednesday 20 September. We’re also screening the film outside the Festival on Wednesday 4 October, Thursday 5 October, Friday 6 October and Saturday 7 October.

Pacific Underground: Spring Silent Films

A specially-curated selection of film excerpts from around the Pacific, dating from 1907 through to the 1950s, with musical accompaniment from acclaimed performing art company, Pacific Underground. Starts at 7pm on 22 September.

Pasiflix: A Pacific Film Quiz Night

Brought to you by the captain of interesting facts, Sean Mallon (Senior Curator – Pacific Cultures, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa). Participants can test their film knowledge, win spot prizes and then catch the film, One Thousand Ropes, on in our cinema the same night – 20 September 2017. The quiz will run from 5.30pm to 6.45pm.

Tupaia’s Endeavour

This is a special fundraiser and test screening of a documentary about Tupaia, the Tahitian high priest, who joined Lt. James Cook on his first Pacific voyage. A Q&A session with director, Lala Rolls and one of the documentary’s presenters, artist, Michel Tuffery, will precede the screening and the audience will be invited to give their feedback. Funds raised will go towards the production of the final theatrical release. This film is at 7pm on September 27.

Cinema Pasifika Short

An eclectic selection of short films from around the Pacific, that covers topics as diverse as hair history and lumberjacks. This compilation screening starts at 7pm on 21 September.

Retro POP-Up Art with the Native Chef

The practice of contemporary Pacific crafts supports the main attraction of the Festival – the moving image. Creating a communal social hub in our café, we are pleased to welcome the Native Chef aka Erolia Ifopo and her Retrospective Ula Lei-Making Workshops (using Crepe Paper). Participants learn how to create a gift of colourful contemporary lei for someone special – to gift at a festive celebration or a special occasion. On at our Wellington café on 20, 22, 27 and 29 September, 1pm-3.30pm.

View the full Siapo* Cinema programme

Nga Taonga and Siapo logos

* Siapo is the Samoan word for the paper mulberry bark cloth or tapa, traditionally dyed in various shades of brown and black. The cloth is referred to by a number of local names in Oceania (e.g. Tonga – Ngatu; Niue – Hiapo, Fiji – Masi). The film festival’s name reflects the similarity to the intensive labour in the making of tapa cloth to elements of filmmaking, frame by frame, contemporary style – depicting the creative stories of the Pacific past, present and future, here and abroad. The colours of the Siapo reminded a friend of the festival, Pacific musician Anton Carter, of the reddish-brown colour of sepia cinema. Hence the name for the Oceania Film Festival – Siapo Cinema came about through word association and creativity.

Siapo Cinema 2017 is made possible through the support of the following organisations:

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