|Directed by||John Honey|
|Produced by||Gilda Baracchi|
|Written by||Ken Kelso|
Beth Roberts (novel)
|Starring|| Mawuyul Yanthalawuy |
|Music by||Peter Sculthorpe|
|Edited by||Mike Woolveridge|
|15 August 1980|
Manganinnie is an AFI Award-winning 1980 film which follows the journey of Manganinnie, a Tasmanian Aboriginal woman who searches for her tribe with the company of a lost white girl named Joanna. Based on Beth Roberts' novel of the same name, it was directed by John Honey and was the first feature film to be financed by the short-lived Tasmanian Film Corporation.
During the Black War of 1830 in the penal colony of Van Diemen's Land, Manganinnie survives a raid on her village. She finds the body of her husband, Meenopeekameena, and builds him a funeral pyre.
The grieving Manganinnie journeys across vast mountains and rivers towards the coast in search of the rest of her tribe. She finds Joanna, a lost white girl, along her way. The pair develop a bond for each other despite not having a common language. Manganinnie teaches Joanna some of her traditional knowledge, and eventually initiates her into her tribe.
Ultimately however, Manganinnie comes to realise that her people and way of life has been destroyed by encroachment from white setttlers. When Joanna is asleep, she carries the girl back to her family.
Joanna struggles to adapt back to life with her family. One day Manganinnie's body is found, and Joanna gives her old friend a traditional funeral using the lessons she has learned.
Filming started 12 November 1979 and took five weeks.
Despite the grim subject matter the film recovered its costs and made a small profit.
Anna Ralph, who played the little white girl Joanna, is now an Associate Professor of infectious diseases working at Royal Darwin Hospital looking after patients, including Aboriginal peoples.
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