Hibiscus & Ruthless|”It’s Not That Much Magic, Just A Little Bit”

“It’s not that much magic, just a little bit.”

Please go watch the trailer and the film so the reference makes sense and isn’t nonsensical. Also, this film is a lot of magic. Truly.

New Zealand film Hibiscus & Ruthless, the second project of SQS (Stallone Vaiaoga-Ioasa) has been out in cinemas since January 25th. And I’m well aware that this review is very late, but y’all should’ve been at the premiere- I guess we all running on island time.

This is SQS’s follow-up to his big hit Three Wise Cousins and I’ve been eager to catch it on the big screen since the trailer popped up on my Facebook newsfeed. Following the life of Hibiscus (Suivai Pilisipi Autagavaia) with her best friend Ruth aka Ruthless (Anna-Maree Thomas), SQS directed a humorous film that evoked nostalgic memories of mum’s lectures, her hidings, the family events- I’ve never related so much with a film until now. Which I believe is one of the greatest things about SQS’s films. They’re a celebration of our culture and our people. He did this with Three Wise Cousins, and did it again with Hibiscus & Ruthless. It’s encouraging to be able to see people like me on screen. It’s uplifting. It’s empowering to have experiences similar to mine (and other Poly’s) on a screen in cinemas, selling tickets and drawing massive amounts of support. Yaaaaassss, I’m proud af.

And it’s the juxtaposition of Hibiscus and Ruthless that drew out my loud as laughs in the middle of The Civic- their friendship is something so familiar, so comfortable and so easy on screen. It made the film so enjoyable because it’s just natural. I’m encouraging everyone to go out and watch this film. Other than being a film that comes through with the laughs, it will appeal to all audiences. Check out the trailer below and my sister’s review- http://spasifikmag.com/hibiscusruthless18/





You’ve been warned.

Also from this point, my writing is going to be even more informal and whack so bear with me- or don’t. I don’t care tbh. My review, not yours.

Guys guys guys- I loved this film. I feel like I might’ve liked it a little more than Three Wise Cousins if their soundtrack was as catchy, but for now they’re pretty much on the same level. Both fantastic.

The children who featured in the film were too cute- And kicking off the New Year on the table, making ipu ki’s? Y IS THAT MY LIFE HAHAAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHA Straight up, I remember being really young and wishing I was a part of a white family so we could watch our money burn and not think twice about it. Is that offensive? Slightly. Weh.

As soon as I saw Hibiscus’ disaster of a date with Mr. I Speak Success (aka Steven), I knew that things were gonna turn to kaka because of drama with a dude. And boy did things go to kaka.

Steven turns out to be a grade A douchebag which sucks because I was rooting for him from the beginning. Heck, I was rooting for him since the trailer. Bible I thought I would just marry him when Hibiscus said her favourite colour was red and he said, “Mine’s blue! Would you like to fight? Ha ha ha ha ha I kid, I kid. Just a bit of street gang humour there.” That line had me crying with laughter. Sorry, my humour is so dry guys.

Then that other dude who isn’t even a potential bae. I feel like he would’ve been the safest option though.

Hibiscus is spending all her fa’alavelave money on dresses for when she’s going on her dates with Anthony. But boy was sooo smooth, with his words and his dancing *fans self* *heart eye emoji* WEH!! When he took off his shirt and the band stopped playing? Had me crying in my seat, for real. Don’t worry Hibiscus, I’d spend all my imaginary money to look good for him, too. Hol’ up while I quickly contact my bank and ask whether I’m eligible for an overdraft HAHAHAHA I kid I kid. No man will ever have that power over me.

Things turned so ugly. They weren’t ready to be together. They were both at different stages in life. Honestly, Hibiscus just needed those experiences because she’d been so sheltered her entire life. Doesn’t it make you think that by sheltering someone so much, your efforts to protect them is for naught because they aren’t prepared for the real world? They haven’t lived or seen enough of the world to know how things work in order to handle it on their own. Not blaming the mother at all for Hibiscus getting hurt, but it’s a teaching moment. The world is hanging and people will always learn from their mistakes. Let them make mistakes. That’s one of the things I felt that the film conveyed.

The whole film is so much deeper than it seems. I had so many questions, like where’s Hibiscus’ dad? OH DAAAAAAANG! While writing this, I just realised how absent male figures were in this film?? The only ones we really looked at were Hibiscus’ potential baes. This film clearly celebrates women, Polynesian women in particular, so maybe they did this so our focus would just be on the women of the film and their lives? SQS, slick af.

Also where does Ruthless live? Especially since my favourite characters were Ruthless and good ol’ G-Ma- I was stuck trying to figure out more of Ruthless’ backstory because she was basically adopted into this small Samoan family, quickly adopting their culture and teachings. I feel as though this small Samoan family shaped her in such a significant way and the moment this really showed, for me, was when Hibiscus went off at her mother and Ruthless was sat at the table. In all honesty, Hibiscus’ meltdown was bound to happen. And so when Ruthless slapped her, I felt that had been because she grew up with them. It was her saying, “Don’t you dare speak to mum like that. Don’t blame anyone else for your mistakes. Don’t wallow in self-pity. You hurt me. Pull yourself together.”

When Hibiscus’ mother (portrayed by Nafanuatele Lafitaga Mafaufau Peters) had her heart to heart with her daughter, I had to blink back tears. It was slightly awkward and stiff, and I’m not sure if it was purposefully done that way, but it was realistic, for me, anyways. In my experience, our Samoan mother’s are headstrong and not overly emotional people (unless it’s anger because they so quick to show you their death stare lol). They don’t show weakness, they don’t coddle or baby us, and they always give it to us straight. And despite talking to her daughter who’s heart’s just been broken, who’s failed her last year of Uni and also let down her best friend, I didn’t feel like Hibiscus’ mother had suddenly become this super duper nice and totally not intimidating and strict parent. She just stopped being so harsh. She was sad about her daughter being sad, and that’s real. I don’t even know if what I just typed up made any sort of sense. Oh well.

This film was some next level stuff, and it really lived up to Three Wise Cousins. I walked out of the theatre trying to plan when I would next watch it. I also walked out and immediately went in search of the cast because I wanted selfies with them. I’m so cool.

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Don’t mind the quality, guys. I don’t know how to fix it.






Frickin Dangerous Bro | They’re Frickin Funny Though

If y’all are avid readers of our website/blog/whatever, y’all will know of Frickin Dangerous Bro, but this time you’ll know a bit more about them from me! We caught one of their Frickin Dangerous World Tour of Tāmaki Makaurau shows in Glen Innes at Te Oro.

Honestly, one of the best things I found about Frickin Dangerous Bro is their interaction with the crowd. Y’know how there are comedians who are mean to the audience? Well Jamaine, James and Pax aren’t like those other comedians who gotta belittle, harrass or embarrass their audience to get some authentic laughs. They’re funny without being mean, and that’s pretty cool.

Frickin Dangerous Bro’s sketches offer some on point social commentary.

I like that it wasn’t preachy, but also doesn’t overstep into being offensive for no reason- I for one am genuinely sick of unapologetically problematic comedians.

It’s refreshing and relatable ya know?

Although the crux of their shows are sketches, they manage to improvise and make other jokes.

Not even joking, they kicked off their show and had to restart three times because Jamaine wanted to mock the late comers (dw, it wasn’t in a rude way okay). The swearing was minimal and it could’ve been because of the 8 year old in the front row, or maybe they know that you don’t have to be crude to be funny as f%^&.

Please, go check out their show. Watch them mock and destroy stereotypes, and get turnt tf up. Also, they’re sponsored by Sprite sooooo they’re a pretty big deal.

Catch their shows that are $15 a ticket- but hurry y’all!! Before they raise the prices to $30 because they’re worth AT LEAST that much and also the seats are limited! I think y’all can also get a selfie at the end!!

September 30th – Birkenhead College, Northshore

October 6th – Mangere Arts Centre – Ngā Tohu o Uenuku, Mangere

October 14th – New Lynn

October 21st – Q, Auckland CBD

Get more information here on their Facebook page.


James, Motu, Jamaine, Mata and Pax. Jamaine said I’ve got jokes sooooo that basically means- catch me in the next show??? sk- just them. Source: FDB’s Facebook Page

Mata’s mentions:

Because you just can’t escape me.

  • The boys run the risk of over playing their sketches, too much of a good thing- you know? But nah I still pa’d my aka (you know if you translate that literally it means popped my laugh- but um a sensible translation would be ‘cracked up’) and I’ve seen a few of those sketches a few times
  • Comedic timing on point- even the adlibs lol
  • 4.5 Jawkwardlols out of 5 … they lost out on a .5 because- okay there’s no real reason tbh.


Spookers | The story behind the scares

The documentary, Spookers, directed by Florian Habicht, has recently hit cinemas as of the 14th of September and Mata and I were lucky enough to be invited to a preview screening.

Now, before going into the cinema, I had watched the trailer and from the get-go, I was stoked. We get to see behind the scenes, we get to see what sort of people worked in this sort of environment and why. My curiosity about this place sky rocketed because last year in early December, the 11th of December to be exact, I had gone to Spookers with Mata and some other family members. It had been one of the most frightening experiences of my life. Idfw clowns… or loud, inhuman screeching.

Fast forward to the preview screening, we were lucky enough to have one of the Spookers actors there, IN FULL MAKEUP AND COSTUME. Juneen (I think that’s her name) walked out and I sacked my metaphorical nuts. She walked towards me and I swear, I thought she was that demon Valak from The Conjuring 2. I wasn’t even in front of the screen and I was already scared.

Walking into the cinema 11 or whatever, it was hard to ignore the looks the rest of the audience cast our way because I may have freaked out louder than I had originally thought (lol). But once the film had started playing, I couldn’t stop thinking Juneen was going to pop out at me. So throughout the first 20 minutes, I was sitting there tense af and hella jumpy.

Now, Spookers, the documentary was everything I thought it would be and more. It was scary (for me) but it was so unbelievably funny. It almost had a ‘Shaun of the Dead’ feel, and I couldn’t understand how I could be scared and laughing at the same time. One of the greatest things about Spookers is they let you into their world and where that might sound incredibly unappealing, it’s heartwarming watching the way the actors and the family who runs the place interact. They really are a close-knit unit that not only supports each other in the workplace, but also through personal hardships.

This documentary was insightful and we were able to look at the history of Spookers, or more the history of the former psychiatric ward, Kingseat Hospital. Founded in 1932 and closed in 1999, the hospital held over 800 patients for various reasons. And it was good to see the different perspectives on the infamous haunted attraction, Spookers.

Please, anyone who has gone to Spookers or wants to go should definitely watch this. Anyone who enjoys watching people get the crap (code brown) scared out of them should watch this. Tbh I reckon everyone should watch this, it’s just great.

Special Mentions:

  • Shout out to the amazing cast, y’all are epic and the dramatisations on the rugby field are A++
  • How’s about The Sausage Song had me crying. SAUSAGES. Really??!?

  • Peep our cute ass family photo at Spookers loooooolScreen Shot 2017-09-18 at 8.50.03 pm
  • When ‘Ia Lava Lava’ started playing at the end, and Mata and I couldn’t help but hum/sing along because wow what a bangaaaa. Ad libs, trills and everythaaang.
  • We didn’t see our friend Two Chainz (although he only had one chain) in the doco. We met him at Spookers and he haaaaaaaated us, especially Leilani (the one in the stripped top). I swear he wanted to drop kick her hahahahaha!!!
  • I think everyone should enjoy our photos, ay.
  • This has nothing to do with the film, but like, there was this super cute priest when we went last year????? Um???? Hook us up please???? Hahahahahaha just joking. Or am I?

Mata’s Mentions:

  • Hi guys, miss me? A few things from me- I thought the dramatisations were a bit dramaatz- but I suppose you can’t have a dramatisation without the drama.
  • I do appreciate that the documentary had input from a former Kingseat nurse and patient, it gave the doco a somewhat balanced approach.
  • I’d give the doco FOUR JAWKWARDLOLS out of FIVE- because the slowmo scares and the sausage song had me in stitches.







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He’s the priest hahahahaha 😉


Kingsman: The Golden Circle | Trailers

Out in NZ theatres September 21st, we cannot wait! So we’ve watched and rewatched the trailers and put them in one place for you to watch (or rewatch) too!

So the Kingsman headquarters gets destroyed and the world is held hostage and of course, OF COURSE, there’s an allied spy organization in the US.  It’ll be interesting to watch the brits and the yanks work together to save the world, always good for a laugh.

Ze cast: Taron Egerton, Channing Tatum, Julianne Moore, Halle Berry, Mark Strong, Jeff Bridges, Colin Firth, Julianne Moore

It’s a star studded cast but I’m mainly glad to see that Roxy aka LANCELOT (Sophie Cookson) is still in the picture. Because idc… issa ship.


Black Butler: Book of The Atlantic | Film Review [#OTAKU LIFE]

The latest animated rendition of the Black Butler [黒執事; Kuroshitsuji] manga by Yana Toboso grabs the story of the sixth arc, Luxury Liner, and gives us an action-packed film rendition of an already amazing manga series. ‘Kuroshitsuji: Book of the Atlantic’ is brought to us by A-1 Pictures, directed by Noriyuki Abe and written by Hiroyuki Yoshino. The film follows our ever-so-dark yet cute main boy Ciel Phantomhive and his butler Sebastian Michaelis as they embark on a luxury cruise full of nobles to hunt down the source of a rumour revolving around human experimentation.

If you’ve been following the manga, GREAT. If you’ve watched the anime versions (sans the latter part of the second season which is hypothetical) and managed to watch up to the ‘Book of Murder’ movie/2 long episode special, then some characters may seem familiar (one in particular who makes an appearance in the ‘Book of Circus’ series/arc). If not, THEN YOU MUST! I won’t spoil any of this film, apart from the plot which I’ve mentioned and I guess you don’t necessarily HAVE to watch the preceding seasons/films because, like most anime, when a character appears, the main character, usually in a shocked state, reveals their whole name. That being said, a lot of the story would make MORE sense if you watched the series or read the manga before this arc (The film covers volumes 12, 13 and 14 of the manga if that’s useful information) and characters you once knew from the stuff before this film might help to add shock value to some of the revelations in this film.

The film retains the Black Butler series’ dark and sombre aura, with that hint of comedy, flying cutlery ass-kickery and the characterization ranging from the composed cool main cast to the over-flamboyant and narcissistic characters that our main men Ciel and Sebastian seem to always ‘coincidentally’ run into. The art and character design is the same between the manga and seasons before this film, music is grand and dramatic and the story is plot-twist GALORE.

As a long-time fan of the series, I highly recommend the film – the reasons why though, I can’t give because spoilers level: MAX. SO WATCH IT PLEASE! If you’re looking for a ‘if the Titanic was the meeting ground for a secret society of nobles and the passengers included a revengeful earl and his demon butler’ kind of story (and it’s not even a joke at the fact that it’s a luxury liner, THE SHIP LITERALLY FACES (almost) THE SAME DEMISE)  then give the film a try. Like I said before, even if you’ve read the manga, seen the animations before this one or haven’t seen it at all, give it a try because “You see, its one hell of a movie.”

Take a look at screenings here in New Zealand for the film which premiered yesterday at EVENTS Cinema and goes on until next Wednesday (21st of June) and you can also catch it today at 4:30pm and at 12pm noon on Saturday and Sunday at Academy Cinemas.


Li’i Alaimoana – Minority Report

When you are a Pacific Islander and you read a Pacific Island name on a big sign outside a building you feel almost compelled to go and cheer them on. I was lucky enough to be able to go and cheer on a fellow P.I. and Billy T Award Nominee for 2017 at his comedy show at Vault at the Q Theatre and what an experience it was!

We were greeted with a keyboard, guitar and microphone. Vault is such an intimate atmosphere so it felt like we were all mates hanging out in front of a stage. Li’i began the show with some ambient music via his keyboard. This was mixed with a whole lot of giggles about various day to day activities such as bringing in the washing and doing dishes whilst dealing with emotional blackmail from your wife. Very very very VERY relatable (or so my husband says). Li’i then introduces his show with a kind of trigger warning. It is based on some very personal experiences. The type that your every day Pacific Islander is no stranger to and this sort of brings the mood of the room to a different level. It is very sobering to see a male bare a part of himself like that and it was appreciated.

The show continues on with lots of jokes that had me in complete fits. Discussions about growing up and watching your parents and their dance moves had me back in the garage watching my family members drinking and dancing. The sprinkler one of my all time favs was performed and this had me in stitches. The atmosphere was lifted when Li’i played a game with one yawning audience member who happened to be front and centre in the seating. Li’i has quick humour and drew on the audience for a few unplanned but very effective laughs. The use of music was impressive and fun. His whole demeanour is so relatable and he truly is hilarious!

His timing and presentation isn’t that of your everyday comedian. He almost seemed like the funny uncle whose jokes you can always rely on to get the party started and keep the party going. In fact he seemed like the uncle who would be the last man standing at a party! Li’i gives you a show that you can relate to as a parent, a single person, a Pacific Islander, a Palagi and even as a kid I am pretty sure you could relate to and laugh at some of his outrageous island humour. There was a lot to love about seeing a fellow brown person on stage commanding and demanding the respect he deserves. Li’i shows us that we can follow our dreams and be something great whilst also being our loud brown and proud selves. What a show!

You can watch some of his more casual funny stuff right here.


Paul Williams | Summertime Love REVIEW

Paul Williams, 2017 Billy T Award nominee, really finds his groove on stage at his show “Summertime Love.”


I have never been to a comedy gig with so many different types of funny! There is a lot going on, but it works in with Paul’s weird/cool/awkward style of comedy.

Things I learnt about Paul Williams:

1.Paul has many talents. We already knew about his mad skills on the mini keyboard from his appearances on The Guy Williams Show, but his musical genius doesn’t stop there. In fact, it doesn’t stop at music either – I’ll leave it for Paul to tell you about his one great talent, but let’s just say, the single people in the audience won’t be single for long.


2. Paul gets distracted easily. Which I found hard to discern whether that was actually part of the gig, or whether he really does just sometimes, mid sentence, wonder about the audience’s daily intake of water.

3. Paul loves a bit of banter with the audience, and slammed out some solid impromptu one-liners that had me in stitches.

4. Paul genuinely seems like a nice guy. This added to his hilarity in an honest, down-to-earth, “kiwi” way.

5. Paul Williams has been to New York.

Things to look forward to when you go see Paul Williams:  

1.Some kick-ass yoyo skills

2. Weird-and-probably-irrelevant flirting tips

3. Nostalgic stories of a NZ childhood

4. A seminar

5. Sick dance moves.


Just a special mention to Paul’s audience – they really created an atmosphere of comedy, they were hanging out for Paul’s for the next joke. SHOUT OUT to the couple who sat in front of me, with the loudest and greatest laughs of all times – the world needs more people like you!

Make sure to catch Paul this week in Auckland while you can! Ticket info here


The LOL is silent.

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