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Documentaries // Travel, nature & discovery

THE SPIRIT OF THE CANOE


30'
2007


VERSION(S)
French, English and International

SUPPORT(S)
SD

PRODUCER(S)
Jour J Productions

DIRECTOR
Gérard Jumel

Rocked by the festive atmosphere and the breathtaking images of the biggest canoe race in the world, the Hawaïki Nui Va’a, we shall gradually discover the existence of the spirit of the canoe. Matahi Brightwell is today building a double canoe, baptized the Hawaïki Nui 2, which will link the Christmas Islands and will later reach Chile’s coastline. This Maohi from New Zealand meets here Francis Cowan who had proved 25 years ago that the Polynesians had in the past covered large distances braving strong winds and using similar vessels. Cowan’s exploit was remarked by all the Polynesians and a new interest in canoes was instantly born. The rebirth of the Va’a, the balancing canoe, is in full swing today and is the most traditional and the most practised sport in Polynesia. Currently, canoe races are living examples of the ancestral link between the Polynesians and the sea as part of a great navigational tradition.


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