Variously praised as a major step forward in indigenous cinema, attacked for overambition, and little screened, Te Rua marked Barry Barclay’s impassioned follow-up to Ngati. This story of stolen Māori carvings in a Berlin museum sees Barclay plunging into issues of control of indigenous culture he would return to in book Mana Tuturu. Feisty activist (Peter Kaa) and elder lawyer (screen taonga Wi Kuki Kaa) favour different approaches to getting the carvings back home. Barclay and his longtime producer John O’Shea had their own differences over Te Rua’s final cut.
Te Rua was never made for Pākēha. Open to them, intelligible to them, but from within me, it's for Māori.– Barry Barclay, on Te Rua, in documentary Breaking Barriers
'Turuturu Mai Ra' Haka performed by Pipiwharauroa
Music composed by Dalvanius
Soundtrack includes music from the musical Poi E
Additional music by Jay Dee and Stuart Pearce (who also produced)
Closing track 'I’ll be there for you' composed and performed by Dalvanius
'Chudka Poppy' composed and performed by Dalvanius, from a poem by Apirana Taylor