A film addressing domestic violence will be made in the Cook Islands as part of the Film Raro competition in May.
University of Hawaii film student Erin Lau and her team are excited and proud to have this opportunity to share their craft and collaborate with locals to tell a story that can make a difference.
“Gender equality, women’s rights and domestic violence are important issues for all women around the world including the Pacific,” says Lau.
She adds her film’s point of difference is that it speaks with an indigenous Pacific voice.
Lau’s film, titled ‘A Little Girl’s War Cry’, deals with the touchy subject of domestic violence through the eyes of a 10-year-old Cook Islands girl named Tiare, who shelters herself from reality by taking on the persona of a caped super hero.
Tiare deals out justice to wicked monsters in a bid to save her precious Barbie doll.
Influence from cultural elements of respect and pride eventually help Tiare to discover not only her identity but also her inner strength.
Driven by the power of a mother and child’s love, she finds the will to fight back.
“I hope to focus on telling stories that give a voice to causes, peoples and cultures that are sometimes unnoticed,” says Lau.
“The continuously developing filmmaking community in Hawaii has given a voice to its indigenous peoples allowing for a stronger presence in our local and global filmic history.
“I think the Cook Islands can accomplish the same presence for their own community through Film Raro.”
Members of Lau’s team have collaborated together on many projects but are the youngest participants of the Film Raro challenge.
The majority of its members are still studying at the University of Hawaii Manoa.
“Due to my crew’s ages and experience levels, we offer a fresh and new perspective.
“My crew and I would like to express our huge appreciation and undying gratitude for this amazing opportunity.
“Personally, I hope at the end of this project to be both a stronger filmmaker and person overall.
“We are all very excited and hope to meet and soar above the expectations we have been handed. Mahalo nui loa.”