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White Lies is a story about the nature of identity: those who deny it and those who strive to protect it. Paraiti (Whirimako Black) is a medicine woman. She is the healer and midwife of her rural, tribal people - she believes in life. But new laws are in force prohibiting unlicensed healers. On a rare trip to the city, she is approached by Maraea (Rachel House), the servant of a wealthy woman, Rebecca (Antonia Prebble), who seeks her knowledge and assistance in order to hide a secret which could destroy Rebecca's position in European settler society. If the secret is uncovered a life may be lost, but hiding it may also have fatal consequences. So Paraiti, Maraea and Rebecca become players in a head on clash of beliefs, deception and ultimate salvation.Written by
South Pacific Pictures
1920s New Zealand. Traditional medicine, family secrets
I had no hesitation in giving this film 10 out of 10. I thought it was extraordinary, as did everyone else in the cinema. Everyone sat respectfully and watched the credits roll and comments heard as we left the cinema were without exception complimentary. What a story - quite dark but very moving as we see the collision of two cultures. I believe White Lies has the potential to win Viewers' Choice Awards at film festivals. There was not a false note in it for me, although some may find Antonia Prebble's character quite rigid - but she needed to be. I am going to see this film again later this week, and it's not often that I do that.
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