Monday, May 17, 2010

Madness Monday- Princess Ka’iulani Movie Update 2

Princess Ka'iulani

I sometimes post some of the stories from my blog on the website I had almost stopped doing this when I received a message through about the Essie Mott memoirs. This resulted in a lot of fun blogging connections and many blog posts, so I continue to post a few stories on GenealogyWise, just to see what will happen next.

I noticed last week that a story I had posted on GenealogyWise on 16 October 2009 was their second most popular blog post. This was the post “Princess Ka’iulani of the Kingdom of Hawaii” that I posted on my Nutfield Genealogy blog on the same day. I knew that the movie, originally titled “Barbarian Princess” and then renamed “Princess Kaiulani” was due to be released in the continental United States in May 2010, and this must be driving my post’s popularity via Google.

I belong to several Facebook groups which have been following the movie since its premiere in Honolulu last fall. The most interesting is the official Facebook group from Iolani Palace. Some of the scenes were shot on location at the Iolani Palace, and they have been walking the fine line of preserving the historical integrity of the movie and placating the Hawaiians who have been upset by some of the liberties the producers took with their beloved Princess’s story. It seems that Hawaiians think the movie was important to bring the story of the overthrow to the public, but they were disappointed that the producers did not stay true to history.

Another Facebook group, more outspoken and with more political overtones, is the group “Hawaiian Monarchy”. Their statement on May 14, 2010 is “Since I keep on being asked about that "Barbarian", I will state that only 20 to 30% of that movie has a factual basis. The dates are all wrong. The relationship between the Davies is wrong. The movie does not even bother to mention Ka'iulani's engagement with Prince Kawananakoa or the fact that Princes David Kawananakoa and Jonah Kalanianaole were also in England. Where is Toby? The movie is fictional.” They have been posting reviews, both positive and negative for the movie.

My fellow genealogy blogger and movie buff Barbara Poole of “Life from the Roots” alerted me that there was a listing of show times for the movie “Princess Kaiulani” available on line, and I found two locations in the Boston area showing the movie this weekend. A distant cousin in Hawaii attended the premiere in Honolulu last fall, and she said “To make it interesting to the folks out there that are not familiar with the Hawaiian history of that era, the author stressed the love line. It is true that K had many beaus, but they stressed only one, the son of Theo. H. Davies, who was a businessman here, made a fortune and returned to England to live off of his profits.”

The madness is that the movie is in a “limited release”, which means that only some theaters across the nation will be showing it in May. There are exactly ZERO theaters in New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont showing “Princess Kaiulani”. The two theaters showing the movie in Boston are known for showing art films, documentaries and foreign films. Hopefully this important movie will be like “Whale Riders” or “March of the Penguins” and become popular enough to be shown in regular theaters nationwide.

I’ll report back here after I see the movie this weekend in Boston.

Click her for My original post on Princess Ka’iulani and the possible movie release dated 16 October 2009
Click here for My second post, 19 March 2010, on the updated movie release and the movie trailer link

Other links with more information: A blog for those interested in learning more details about the Princess’s life story. They also have a group on Facebook named “The Princess Kaiulani Project”. A website by the administrators of the above blog and other individuals.

Copyright 2010, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

1 comment:

  1. Heather, I share your "madness" about limited releases, and that is how it is with independent movies. However, "Slumdog Millionaire" sure went on to become a winner. Let's keep our fingers crossed. Even "The Blind Side" was part fiction, so don't let that discourage you, after all, it is Hollywood, and they are doing it for the money. Can’t wait to see it.