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Moana with Sound1980

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  • 3.7
After the triumphant success of NANOOK OF THE NORTH, director Robert J. Flaherty journeyed with his wife Frances and their children to the South Seas island of Savai'i to capture on the film the exotic lifestyles of the Samoan people. It was in a 1926 review of their film that the word "documentary" was first used in a cinematic context. While MOANA may not have been a documentary in the purest sense of the word, what the filmmakers achieved was even greater. The Flahertys resurrected and dramatized the recently vanished customs and struggles of the Samoan people, just before modernization permanently altered the cultural landscape of the island. In 1975, the Flaherty's daughter Monica ventured back to Savai'i, with documentarian Richard Leacock, to record a new audio track of authentic sounds and voices in the regional dialect, released in 1980 as MOANA WITH SOUND. This restoration by Bruce Posner and Sami van Ingen (great-grandson of the Flahertys), marks the first time Monica's soundtrack has been married to pristine 35mm elements and allows the landmark motion picture to be seen (and heard) in its full glory.

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