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Te Rerenga Wairua

Short Film (Full Length) – 1984

Parental Guidance

This trippy animation follows the spirit of a person killed in a motorway car accident. The life force (wairua) runs through forest and beaches on its journey to Te Rerenga Wairua (Cape Rēinga). En route it meets tourist buses and other spirits, before reaching the gnarly pohutukawa and making the leap towards Hawaiki-Nui. There's a real native joy in seeing contemporary 80s animation enliven ancient Māori spiritual concepts. Joe Wylie (Toy Love's Bride of Frankenstein) was in charge of the animation team; The Clean provide the soundtrack to the all-stops-out finale.

In Aotearoa the Wairua is the force that animates each human being. In dreams the Wairua may wander abroad to places beyond the reach of the body, even to Te Rerenga Wairua, the world beyond the world of the living.
– From the intro to the film

Key Cast & Crew

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Sue Wilson

Animator, Producer

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Joe Wylie

Animator, Writer, Director of Animation

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Bridget Sutherland

Animation - Cel Painting

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Tim Cornelius

Animation - Cel Painting

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Chris Knox


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Patrick Monaghan


See all 18 credits

Produced by

Magic Films