Merata: How Mum Decolonised the Screen - Directed by Heperi Mita
Thu 13 June - 3.55pm - State Theatre
Sat 15 June - 2pm - Event Cinemas George St 5
A fascinating portrait of trailblazing Māori filmmaker, Merata Mita (reportedly the first Indigenous woman to direct a feature), crafted with love by her youngest son.
A film archivist, debut director Heperi Mita is also the son of Merata and New Zealand filmmaker Geoff Murphy. Heperi takes us through his mother's life and work, beginning with her traditional childhood and early marriage in Maketu, Bay of Plenty. A move to Auckland and a fractious relationship follow, and she ends up juggling solo parenting with her burgeoning activism (resulting in police harassment), politicisation and interest in filmmaking. Merata Mita was a barrier-breaking figure, not just as a filmmaker but also as a global mentor for indigenous people, and inspiration for many (including Taika Waititi). Heperi tells Merata's dynamic story with clips of her work, interviews with family, and also his own touching commentary.