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Tanna

OSCAR NOMINEE - BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

Starring Maria Wawa, Mungau Dain and Marceline Rofit. Directed by Martin Butler and Bentley Dean. Opens Friday at TIFF Bell Lightbox. 104 minutes. PG

A nominee for Best Foreign Language Film at the most recent Oscars, Tanna depicts a land far removed from western society.

It’s titled for and filmed in a South Pacific island, in the nation of Vanuatu, where an active volcano rages, patriarchies rule and rival tribes offer brides as peace offerings. Marriage for love is forbidden.

This runs counter to the romantic dreams of Wawa (Maria Wawa) and her boyfriend Dain (Mungau Dain), the chief’s grandson. Like Romeo and Juliet, they dare to challenge the wishes of their parents. Wawa’s younger sister Selin (Marceline Rofit) snoops but also sympathizes. Can love prevail?

Aussie co-directors Martin Butler and Bentley Dean prize authenticity over conventional drama. Tanna is based on a true story, and island residents were engaged as actors in the telling of it, using their own languages. Dean and his family lived on the island for most of a year prior to filming.

The film’s most compelling “character” is the island itself, which Dean, who also worked the camera, unveils with the verdant wonder of a summer morning.

Courtesy: Peter Howell, Toronto Star

Showtimes: 

No screenings currently scheduled.

Directed by: 
Bentley Dean, Martin Butler
Running Time: 
105
Country(ies): 
Australia, Vanuatu
Language: 
Nauvhal with English Subtitles
Starring: 
Mungau Dain, Marie Wawa, Marceline Rofit, Albi Nangia
Official site: 
Link
Screenplay by: 
Bentley Dean, Martin Butler
Rated: 
PG

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