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Once Were Warriors

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  • Pages: 4
  • Word count: 796
  • Category: Culture

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What do you do, if you left your ”tribe” to live with someone you think is the best person for you and your upcoming family, confident that he will put his family first and got what it takes to be a good father and husband. This is the story of Beth Heke in the movie ”Once Were Warriors”.

The movie ”Once Were Warriors” is about a family know by the name Heke. In that family we have Beth, Nig, Grace, Boogie and Jake Heke also known as Jake the Muss. Jake is unemployed and spends most days getting drunk with his friends. Jake is relentless to his family and has a vicious temper, which means he often fight when he is drunk, as mentioned in the movie he is a slave to his fist. Grace is the oldest daughter and she keeps a journal of events going on through the day, which she tells to her siblings before bedtime.When things seems bad or she got sparetime Grace tends to visit her best friend Toot, who lives in a carwreck. Beth is the mother, she likes to get drunk sometimes just like jake. She is not the best mother. She tries very hard but it’s not good enough. She doesn’t have much surplus and her ability to be a mom is chipped yet flawed. Nig is the oldest son. He is a member of a street gang and got maori inspired tattoos all over him, including Half part of his face. He is the only one strong enough to take a stand against the family father Jake.

Boogie is also a son of Jake and Beth. He is a criminal and therefor he is put into a foster home. The family can visit Boogie, but they never got there because of Jake who got drunk in the local pub. After that the whole family is left devastated in due to Jakes acts. The daughter Grace puts most of the blame on her mother Beth, because she was so sure that Jake would take them to see Boogie. After this, Grace got raped by her uncle and wrote it down in her journal. Some days after the rapists came along, Grace committed suicide in the backyard. Beth comes home, after being out all day looking for Grace and finds her dead in the tree. Beth now takes her first real stand against Jake, and decides to take Grace home to her maori family. After the funeral Beth finds Grace’s journal and reads the story of the night, when Grace was raped by her uncle. She goes to the local pub to show it to Jake, and after he reads the story, he starts tearing the uncle, also known as Bully, into pieces.

While Jake beats Bully, Beth and Nig gets into the car and leaving Jake ”the Muss” Heke for once and for all. In the movie ”Once Were Warriors” the protagonist is Beth. She is trying to do the best for the family, but most of the time neither Jake or her low surplus stops her. Beth really wants the family to grow, but the family is very poor. Jake Heke is obviously the antagonist, as he always gets his way when arguing with Beth. He is also seen as the antagonist in the movie because he is the evil person in the movie. Jake hates everything about the maori culture, he refers to them as a uncivilized people. The maori is a people that value spiritual peace, freedom and they have lots of traditions. You can still find maori tribes around New Zealand. Some of them are keeping the language alive. The maori people have certain dances and rituals to different occasions. You can clearly see that Jake doesn’t appreciate the maori culture in this movie, and I think that it is the conflict. Jake is almost looking down upon the family like, he is in control and gives the orders in the house. Jake doesn’t see beth as an equal person to him, and in the end of the movie Beth stand up in protest and proves that Jake is not in control and he still is a slave.

I think that cultures like the maori culture is important to the world. It reminds me what was good about it. You have to remember that the past is the key to the future, and in times like these, people could use a little old-fashioned way. It makes people feel save in this fast moving world if they have some tradition they can return to. They are very good to remind “what to do” and to get together with your friends and family, and not to chase the american dream.

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