While documentary work has defined the visual language of Hawai‘i cinema for decades, a rise in narrative filmmaking in recent years signals an evolution in Hawai‘i-based storytelling—helmed by a burgeoning generation of filmmakers actively engaged in collective world-building through narrative fiction, particularly from a Native Hawaiian lens. Selected by Doris Duke Theatre programmer Taylour Chang, these short films are just a few examples of a growing community of artists nurturing a visual language for Hawai‘i cinema that is rooted to the land that inspires it. The inspirations seeded in these films continue to open exciting new horizons for narrative storytelling in Hawai‘i. Also: don’t miss our Art-House America profile of the Doris Duke Theatre, featuring another selection of Hawaiian films by Chang.
Directed by Justyn Ah Chong • 2019 • United States
Starring Kamakaniokaaina Paikai
A soft-spoken janitor, frustrated with cleaning up after an endless parade of tourists, reflects on a traumatic memory that stirs a voice from within in this short inspired by the work of Hawaiian poet Wayne Kaumu...