7.9/10
30,598
294 user 61 critic

Once Were Warriors (1994)

R | | Crime, Drama | 3 March 1995 (USA)
Trailer
2:08 | Trailer
A family descended from Maori warriors is bedeviled by a violent father and the societal problems of being treated as outcasts.

Director:

Lee Tamahori

Writers:

Riwia Brown, Alan Duff (novel)
22 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rena Owen ... Beth Heke
Temuera Morrison ... Jake Heke
Mamaengaroa Kerr-Bell ... Grace Heke
Julian Arahanga ... Nig Heke
Taungaroa Emile ... Boogie Heke
Rachael Morris Jr. Rachael Morris Jr. ... Polly Heke
Joseph Kairau ... Huata Heke
Cliff Curtis ... Bully
Pete Smith ... Dooley
George Henare ... Bennett
Mere Boynton Mere Boynton ... Mavis
Shannon Williams ... Toot
Calvin Tuteao ... Taka (Gang Leader)
Ray Bishop Ray Bishop ... King Hitter (in pub)
Ian Mune ... Judge
Learn more

More Like This 

Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

This sequel to the New Zealand-set drama "Once Were Warriors" revisits alcoholic Maori man Jake Heke (Temuera Morrison) and his wife, Beth (Rena Owen), who have separated, largely due to ... See full summary »

Director: Ian Mune
Stars: Temuera Morrison, Rena Owen, Clint Eruera
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

Two inmates with dark pasts, journey into the world of hip-hop.

Director: Pale Christian Thomas
Stars: Charles Jarman, Kasey Ryne Mazak, Duane Patterson
Lone Star (1996)
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

When the skeleton of his murdered predecessor is found, Sheriff Sam Deeds unearths many other long-buried secrets in his Texas border town.

Director: John Sayles
Stars: Chris Cooper, Elizabeth Peña, Stephen Mendillo
Mahana (2016)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

From the author of "The Whale Rider", a tale of family rivalry and reconciliation, set against the stunning backdrop of rural New Zealand in the 1960s.

Director: Lee Tamahori
Stars: Temuera Morrison, Akuhata Keefe, Nancy Brunning
Chopper (2000)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Chopper tells the intense story of Mark "Chopper" Read, a legendary criminal who wrote his autobiography while serving a jail sentence in prison. His book, "From the Inside", upon which the film is based, was a best-seller.

Director: Andrew Dominik
Stars: Eric Bana, Simon Lyndon, Vince Colosimo
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A group of skinheads become alarmed at the way their neighbourhood is changing.

Director: Geoffrey Wright
Stars: Russell Crowe, Daniel Pollock, Jacqueline McKenzie
Smoke (1995)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A Brooklyn smoke shop is the center of neighborhood activity, and the stories of its customers.

Director: Wayne Wang
Stars: Harvey Keitel, William Hurt, Giancarlo Esposito
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Two teenage girls share a unique bond; their parents, concerned that the friendship is too intense, separate them, and the girls take revenge.

Director: Peter Jackson
Stars: Melanie Lynskey, Kate Winslet, Sarah Peirse
Il Postino (1994)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A simple Italian postman learns to love poetry while delivering mail to a famous poet, and then uses this to woo local beauty Beatrice.

Directors: Michael Radford, Massimo Troisi
Stars: Massimo Troisi, Philippe Noiret, Maria Grazia Cucinotta
Diva (1981)
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two tapes, two Parisian mob killers, one corrupt policeman, an opera fan, a teenage thief, and the coolest philosopher ever filmed all twist their way through an intricate and stylish French-language thriller.

Director: Jean-Jacques Beineix
Stars: Wilhelmenia Fernandez, Frédéric Andréi, Richard Bohringer
Trust (1990)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

After being thrown out of her house, Maria encounters a married woman who complains of not having children. Maria ends up in an abandoned house, where she meets Matthew. When a baby is kidnapped Maria sets out to find the woman.

Director: Hal Hartley
Stars: Adrienne Shelly, Martin Donovan, Rebecca Nelson
Action | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Local goon, Gerry, hires a yellow mini in Kaitaia using a stolen license. John's wife has just left him and moved to Invercargill. He is devastated and needs to talk to her. He has no ... See full summary »

Director: Geoff Murphy
Stars: Tony Barry, Kelly Johnson, Claire Oberman
Edit

Storyline

Set in urban Auckland (New Zealand) this movie tells the story of the Heke family. Jake Heke is a violent man who beats his wife frequently when drunk, and yet obviously loves both her and his family. The movie follows a period of several weeks in the family's life showing Jake's frequent outburst of violence and the effect that this has on his family. The youngest son is in trouble with the police and may be put into a foster home while the elder son is about to join a street gang. Jake's daughter has her own serious problems which are a key element in the plot. Written by Chris Maslin <maslinc@cad.canterbury.ac.nz>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Her only chance for the future is to embrace the power of her past. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language and strong depiction of domestic abuse, including sexual violence and substance abuse | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Eventually a local police commander, Rana Waitai, gave an impassioned speech about the importance of the film, and this convinced the New Zealand Film Commission to back the project. See more »

Goofs

When Beth is talking to her best friend (the female singer in the bar) at the kitchen table, the amount of beer in the glass varies inconsistently between shots. See more »

Quotes

Jake Heke: [reading from Grace's diary] Uncle Bully...
Jake Heke: [insane with brutal rage] UNCLE FUCKING BULLY!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Before the ending credits start, a giant 'END' covers the screen. See more »


Soundtracks

Once Were Warriors (The Awakening)
Performed by Tama Renata
See more »

User Reviews

An incredible piece of film making
2 January 2004 | by simonhiller03See all my reviews

This is a film that should be seen by everyone. A powerful movie that will stir almost every emotion you can think of, and sometimes all at once. Completely believable and compelling film that will hold you till the very end, and a long time after.


32 of 46 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 294 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

FineLine

Country:

New Zealand

Language:

English | Maori | Spanish

Release Date:

3 March 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Once Were Warriors See more »

Filming Locations:

Auckland, New Zealand See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,608,570

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,608,570
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby | Dolby SR

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed