I really loved this movie Whale Rider. The story was about a tribe of people in New Zealand who were clinging on to their ancient culture and needed to find a leader. The natives of this land had such a rich cultural sphere and were very invested in learning about the ancient customs and using the stick fighting and the language, still in the present day. It seemed most of the people here treasured their ancient heritage and found solace in keeping their traditions very much alive. The story centered around a young girl named Pai and her relationship with her grandfather who has a difficult time accepting her because she was born a twin and her male twin brother died at birth. The story goes on to contemplate the strained relationship between Pai and her grandfather and that really all she wants from him is respect and love. In the end, all the things Pai has been fighting to prove to her father come true after some whales are beached (this culture believes that whales are gods of their ancestors.) and Pai is the only one to be able to get the largest whale free by just riding it. She almost drowns doing this and finally her father realizes exactly how important and special this little girl is. This story was full of heart and redemption and I think that is what made it so special.
Whale Rider17 11 2010