O le Tulafale
A new movie came out recently, and it was the best movie that I have seen in a long time. The movie is titled O Le Tulefale or The Orator.
I went to Apia for a meeting, and as soon as I arrived I was hearing so much buzz about this movie…and being where I am which sometimes has a media block out (no radio, no newspapers….and who really wants to sit in front of a tv?) I had never heard of it before, but I agreed to go with someone for my first Samoan movie experience.
I had never been to the movies before, and from what other people told me, I didn't expect much. I was surprised though, the movie theatre was much better than I thought. It is not like movie theatres in New York (which you pay about 4x the price for a ticket, and about 3x the price for popcorn), but the seats were comfortable to screen was perfect, what more do you need?
O le tūlāfale is a Samoan movie that really captures the Samoan experience. Listening to the sounds puts you directly in the village. It is so beautiful. The movie is in Samoan, but subtitled to ensure everyone will get the full picture.
The movie tells the story of a dwarf man (surprisingly not Stoe, there is a new dwarf actor now!) and deals with Samoan issues on family, and banishment.
The setting takes place in the village that I had my training in, so I lived for several months. It was excited to see the places I hung out on the big screen. I even saw my host father in one of the Matai meetings. Sadly, they did not go down the road to show my house with the camera.
If the movie comes to you, make sure to watch it, it will tell the Samoan experience far better than I ever could!