By Kassi Berg
For those with a passion for Pasifika, viagra order this year’s film competition and screening in Tahiti is a real treat. The Pacific Documentary Film Festival, FIFO, is in the heart of downtown Papeete, a bustling urban city unlike any other in the Pacific. The Festival is being hosted at the Cultural Center (Maison de la Culture), a maze of auditoriums converted into theaters, fully staffed with young locals sporting FIFO-themed shirts.
The films in competition are documentaries of mostly about 1 hour in length that vary greatly in theme and budget seemingly with full freedom of format and tone. It is nearly impossible to see all of the films with more than 15 in competition and another 20 being screened.
One of my favorites was the light-hearted The Cannibales of the Pacific. Why not take a Vanuatu tour with the Magic Tour Company, featuring cannibalism, fire-walking and indigenous people living happily in the hills? Only, in this case, the tour is a complete fiction made up for unsuspecting tourists. Locals drive in a van from their homes in Port Vila to the hills where they paint and garb themselves in traditional wear and play-act their ancient culture for cruise ship patrons. It is a fresh look at the intersection of tourism, economics and culture.
Crocker Island: Exodus is a beautiful cinematic film set against the backdrop of WWII wherein 95 half-caste Australians are abducted and sent to a remote island and all-but forgotten by their government. They trek barefoot across the country for their survival. The film reunites these stolen children decades later in a moving piece with seamless storytelling about friendship, family and the vicissitudes of life.
In Convicts of the Pacific, Historian and professor Xavier Bonnet, brings to life the harrowing story of how the French populated New Caledonia with their unwanted criminals, exiling more than 20,000 convicts to populate this Pacific island nation. After a four-month sea journey these French prisoners were tasked to build their own penal colony which still stands today.
Canning Paradise reveals the ongoing and real life drama of how the most resourceful nation in the Pacific, and perhaps the world, Papau New Guinea, is being stripped of its tuna, land, and human rights in a raw conflict between the people, government and global development.
The Festival has the support of Tahiti’s government, including the High Commissioner, the President, and the Mayor, all of whom hosted their own evening receptions for FIFO’s jurors, special invitees, and media. Hats off to FIFO and Tahiti for providing a venue for Oceania’s artists to teach and tell the struggles and joys of our Pacific community.