In recent years, action movies, and martial arts movies specifically, have branched out and films of that type from previously unrepresented cultures and countries have become much more welcomed by Western audiences. Honestly, if you’d have told me that two of the best action movies of the past decade would have come from Indonesia, I probably wouldn’t either A) believed you or 2) think I’d be able to see it readily. But we’re getting a lot more access to these films and different fighting styles, which comes to the forefront in the new New Zealand film The Dead Lands, which will bring the martial art of the native Maori people, called Mau Rakau, to a whole new audience, or an audience in the first place.
Akin to Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto, The Dead Lands depicts a tribal society long before the appearance of Europeans and the story centers on two warring clans using highly-choreographed hand-to-hand fight sequences employing some extreme athleticism on the part of the actors, which even this short TV spot illustrates.
As if you weren’t intrigued enough by this movie (and we certainly are), it also has the endorsement of someone who knows a thing or two about action movies–director James Cameron, who almost never publicly praises a movie, and certainly not like this. Cameron called it “A powerful and primal coming of age story that’s an absolute adrenaline rush, The Dead Lands is far more than just a great action movie — it’s great cinema.”
Wowzers, that’s quite a thing to say! Now I guess we have to go see it. The Dead Lands will be in select theaters and on VOD April 17.
Does this looks like something in which you’re interested? Let us know below!