Rapa Nui (1994)

R  |   |  Action, Adventure, Drama  |  9 September 1994 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 3,652 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 8 critic

Tenuously based on the legends of Easter Island, Chile, this story details a civil war between the two tribes on the island: the Long Ears and the Short Ears. A warrior from the ruling ... See full summary »



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Title: Rapa Nui (1994)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Eru Potaka Dewes ...
Emilio Tuki Hito ...
Gordon Hatfield ...
Frenxa Reuben ...
Hori Ahipene ...
Chiefy Elkington ...
Ruihana Rewa ...
Old Woman
George Henare ...
Pete Smith ...
Mario Gaoa ...
Short Ears
Short Ears


Tenuously based on the legends of Easter Island, Chile, this story details a civil war between the two tribes on the island: the Long Ears and the Short Ears. A warrior from the ruling class falls in love with a girl from the lower class, and must decide on his position in a time of great civil unrest. The ruling class are demanding larger and larger Moai (stone statues), a task which the lower class and the island ecology are more and more reluctant to provide. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some tribal violence and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

9 September 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Elveda cennet  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)


$305,070 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


While film critic Gene Siskel thought that the egg hunt was ridiculous, the ritual did indeed exist as part of the Birdman Cult. See more »


The Rapa Nui had long abandoned carving moai by the time of the Cult of the Birdman. See more »


Featured in Mars Attacks! (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

I have visited Rapa Nui
6 May 2011 | by (Brazil) – See all my reviews

... and I am very glad I did.

I had not seen the movie prior to going there 6 months ago, for two reasons: people told me it was boring, and when I started watching it, I was bothered by the orangey hue of the movie.

I'm glad that this time I persisted. By no means a classic, it certainly is entertaining, and the actions scenes are genuinely GOOD.

I went to Rapa Nui because I was mesmerized with the idea of an ultra-isolated island where an ecological tragedy happened because of huge stone heads. In fact, I read extensively about the island before visiting it. The reading I recommend the most is Jared Diamond's book "Collapse", which draws from reputable scientific sources and Mr. Diamond's encyclopedic knowledge of geography and biology.

I was hoping to find an island of archaeological interest. What I found was an open-air museum that exceeded all my expectations about archeology, and also a very pleasant and delightful place to visit.

There is no crime. There is no pollution. The only (tiny) beach has white sand and blue water in a perfect temperature. The natives are incredibly nice and even the tourists were interesting (because, really, who goes there?). Now I have a toddler-sized moai in my living room and many wonderful pictures with stones, moai, sunsets, stones, blue sea, volcanoes, moai, and lots of more stones.

And the trees? Around the only town, Hanga Roa, there are many of them! Traumatized with the haunting tale of environment destruction, people are starting to plant crops, and the hotels have beautiful gardens, and the whole town is shady and breezy because of all the trees. It's not all dryness and destruction.

I also believe this movie is underrated. Don't go by the negative interviews! The orangey colors of the movie, though lamentable, don't detract from the overall experience, but if you can find a better copy, by all means do so.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Why this was a good movie Muleke
Why does this movie only have around 550 votes? Jacksrevenge
why is this movie considered so dull? burke2182
When is this movie going to be released on DVD in Region 01? jtrinc
Isn't available in netherlands and belgium ??? Darknezz
Mars Attacks! Silje_Irene_s
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