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Whale Rider

  PG-13 HD Closed Captioning

Niki Caro

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Plot Summary

A small Maori village faces a crisis when the heir to the leadership of the Ngati Konohi dies at birth and is survived only by his twin sister, Pai. Although disregarded by her grandfather and shunned by the village people, twelve-year-old Pai remains certain of her calling and trains herself in the ways and customs of her people. With remarkable grace, Pai finds the strength to challenge her family and embraces a thousand years of tradition in order to fulfill her destiny.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 146
  • Fresh: 132
  • Rotten: 14
  • Average Rating: 7.7/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Newcomer Castle-Hughes' unaffected, confident turn makes it credible our heroine might retain her determination and self-worth despite serial setbacks. – Dennis Harvey, Variety, Jul 7, 2010

Fresh: The filmmaker knows how to seduce an audience without making it feel had. When a movie's this likable, it would take a very tough crowd not to be pleased. – David Ansen, Newsweek, Oct 2, 2009

Fresh: A thoughtful, vivid spiritual coming-of-age story that transcends its particular cultural context. – Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, Jun 24, 2010

Fresh: The most effective and moving female empowerment movie in awhile. – Eric Harrison, Houston Chronicle, Jun 24, 2010

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews


Each time I revisit Whale Rider I find it inspiring. Keisha Castle-Hughes sparkles in this difficult, coming-of-age story, which earned her an Academy Award-Best Actress nomination. I recommend this movie for the entire PG-13 family.

One of the greatest of all times.

This movie is one of the best I've ever seen. When someone asks me what my favorite is I say it is this. It breaks all barriers and is a joy to watch over and over again!

Best movie ever!

I'm not kind of movie person. But this is beautiful and inspiratonal. I love this movie.

Whale Rider
View In iTunes
  • $11.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 2003

Customer Ratings