In 2004 Keisha Castle-Hughes became the youngest person nominated for an academy award. After watching this movie you will see why.
Pai (Keisha Castle-Hughes), is a young girl growing up with her family on the Eastern Coast of New Zealand along with her family and the Whangara people of the region. When her mother and twin brother die at childbirth, her father (Cliff Curtis) runs away from grief and leaves her in the care of her grandparents. However, her grandfather Koro (Rawiri Paratene) is quite disappointed in the fact she is just a girl as her twin brother was supposed to be the next leader of her people. He forms a group of the local boys to teach them the art of their tribal customs. Pai struggles to join them but it always shunned and turned away by her grandfather. But in the end she proves to everyone that she possess this natural leadership ability.
2002 - Whale Rider - Toronto International Film Festival - AGF People's Choice Award is just one of the many awards for this movie.
Director: Niki Caro
Writer: Niki Caro
Producers: Tim Sanders, John Barnett, Frank Hübner