Cyprus Archaeological, Ethnographic & Historical Film Festival 2020 | Special Virtual Edition


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Part 1. We, the Voyagers: Our Vaka (56 minutes 15 seconds)

We, Polynesian voyagers of Taumako, Solomon Islands, share our history, motivations, and skills, through story-telling, canoe building, and wayfinding. We recall our ancestors, who made the greatest human migration. We use only designs, materials, and methods of our culture-hero, Lata, who built the first voyaging canoe (vaka) and navigated to distant islands. After Europeans took over we became isolated and unsustainable. In 1996 Paramount Chief Kaveia, our most experienced navigator, led a new generation in planting gardens, feeding workers, making rope from plants, weaving and sewing sails, protecting our trees, adzing parts for voyaging canoes, and lashing them together. Kaveia also enlisted an anthropologist to help us make films. After Kaveia died in 2009, Chief Holani became our new Lata, and prepared us for an open ocean voyage. Our story of Lata teaches that everyone is welcome in Lata’s crew, and that we can avoid making key mistakes as we prepare to connect with long-lost family and new friends on faraway shores.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    56 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    United States
  • Note
    Not in competition, Special screening | available only on VOD streaming
  • Director
    Marianne "Mimi" George, Heuionalani Wyeth, Jacob Penchansky
  • Screenwriter
    Marianne "Mimi" George, Heuionalani Wyeth, Jacob Penchansky, Dixon Wia Holland, Simon Teave Salopuka
  • Producer
    Marianne "Mimi" George, Heuionalani Wyeth, Jacob Penchansky, Dixon Wia Holland, Simon Teave Salopuka
  • Cast
    Simon Salopuka, Dixon Holland, Mimi George, Ambrose Miki