Winner of awards at film festivals in Hawai’i, Beijing, Tahiti, New York, Osaka, Seattle, Rhode Island and San Diego.
Kumu Hina (directed by Joe Wilson and Dean Hamer) is a powerful feature documentary about the struggle to maintain Pacific Islander culture and values within the Westernized society of modern day Hawai’i. It is told through the lens of Hina Wong-Kalu, an extraordinary Native Hawaiian who is both a proud and confident māhū, or transgender woman, and an honored and respected kudu, or teacher, cultural practitioner and community leader. During a momentous year in her life in modern Honolulu, Hina draws on traditional culture to inspire one of her students to claim her place as leader of the school’s all-male hula troupe. But despite her success as a teacher, Hina longs for love and a committed relationship, and chooses to marry a headstrong Tongan man. An incredible docu-drama that unfolds like a narrative film, Kumu Hina reveals a side of Hawai’i rarely seen on screen.
Released in 2014
Running time: 77 minutes
6:15 pm on Fri., Nov. 6th at the Grange
2:50 pm on Sun., Nov. 8th at the Grange