AroView: Kiwi director Florian Habicht’s moving tribute to Northland life and aroha in the form of a documentary portrait of Isey and her son James, who live on a small farm in Kawakawa and are descendants of the Ngati Manu sub tribe of Ngapuhi. It’s a typically graceful film from the director, full of humour and insight that will charm the socks off anyone with a heartbeat.
Filmed over one week leading up to Isey’s 100th birthday, Habicht presents two immensely lovable characters, one a bourbon drinking warrior queen with a face illuminated by laugh lines, and one a devoted caregiver with a profound spiritual worldview, which interweaves Maori and Native American beliefs into a unique understanding of tohunga.
“It’s a rare film that can be this free of sentiment and saccharine while still positively rolling in romanticism, nostalgia and pure, honestly given aroha. James & Isey is an unclassifiable triumph of heart and instinct over the odds.” ~GRAEME TUCKETT, STUFF