Film premier comes with challenge for Samoan men

The star of One Thousand Ropes has issued a challenge for all the males of Samoa.

Actor Tuiasau Uelese Petaia says they should get themselves to Apollo Cinemas – or wherever they can access a copy – and watch the film.

“I want every Samoan male to see this film,” he told the Weekend Observer.

 “It has messages for them that we’ve hidden for a very long time.  

“We’ve hidden incest, family violence, domestic violence under the guise of our culture.  I want every Samoan male to watch this film because we’ve been doing it all wrong, we need to work with our women, not against our women.” 

Tuiasau made the comments on the day when Tusi Tamasese’s latest masterpiece premiered in Apia at Apollo Cinemas.

Promotional materials about the movie says One Thousand Ropes is a powerful character drama of a father reconnecting with his youngest daughter and together putting to rest the ghosts that haunt them.

“She arrives vulnerable: badly beaten and heavily pregnant,” the cover reads. 

“He struggles on one hand, with the inner temptation and the encouragement from the men in his life to take revenge in the way he knows best, and on the other, to build the new family and companionship so desperately missing from his life.”

Tuiasau said men have a lot to be accountable for.

 “The biggest thing that is not helping us empower the women in our lives is, men. Men will not accept that they can work side by side,” he said. 

 “We don’t need to control our women.  Every time you see this movie you see something new.  I think you should take the time to see this again. 

“We hope the message that gets out to the young people is to walk the talk and do what is right.” 

On Thursday, the audience at the Apollo Cinemas was among the first in the Pacific to witness the powerful movie. The Head of State, His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Efi was among the audience.

The film tackles a number of issues that plague societies, especially in Samoa, and leaves the viewer feeling empowered but also more conscious of why things are the way they are.

Issues such as family violence, domestic abuse, alcoholism and more are addressed in the film.

Tuiasau plays the main character, Maea.

His daughter, Elisa, is played by Frankie Adams. 

“A lot of women I met that saw the film felt really empowered by Elisa,” she said. 

 “They said that by the end of this film they had a lot of hopes for her and hoped that she got redemption and empowerment.  Relationships between her father specifically is another one that’s focused on.”

Another star, Beulah Koale, shared the sentimental experience he’s had in making the film. 

“For me personally as a younger Samoan, kiwi born, what I really took a away from this is, you know, my uncles and my dad bringing what they had and trying to adjust to New Zealand life and not really coping with it well and turning to violence and alcohol.”

He agrees that the film is all about empowering women. See the film at Apollo Cinemas.









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