The Dark Horse – Viewing Notes

What is the symbolism/significance of the film title?

NZ Voice in the film:
Maori legends and names – Tane Mahuta, Maui, harakeke, taniwha

Rising intonation at the end of sentences

Colloquial language – bro, gee, aye, boy, sweet as, mean…

Use of Maori language in everyday situations ( as a first language)

Strong swearing

Issues Raised:

Mental Health

Dysfunctional Families




The Importance of Culture and Identity – language, music, myths and legends

Symbolism – the metaphor of the chess pieces on the chess board compared with the Maori people and their land, Aotearoa. ‘Chess as the game of life’.


Posted by Tracey Hames

Teacher of English at Mount Aspiring College, Wanaka, New Zealand.

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