A New Kind of Warrior Maasai Samurai, Fashion Film
South African filmmaker Porteus Xandau, experiments in this fashion film by using two cultures "Warriors" and taking the concept of clothing and armor. The Samurai, a warrior that is deep in history of the Japanese culture and The Maasai, which is actually a tribe group located in East Africa but are well known for being the tribe made up of warriors. Both Japanese and Maasai clothing and traditional wear have been big influences in many designers collections.
The Maasai are a semi-nomadic-tribe, residing in Southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania. The tribe rely on livestock and seasonal rotation. They are made up of warriors and boys who are in charge of securing their people and livestock, and women, who are responsible for making houses, supplying water, milking cattle. They have many rituals and traditions like any other culture, however, their culture consist of Warriors (who are predominantly men) and are famously known for the colorful beaded necklace and red cloth called Shuka. Which I believe inspired Xandau used as his focus color in his film.
The Samurai, were members of military caste system during feudal time in Japan and were known as very fearsome warriors whose traditions were based on honor and strong discipline. Each armor a Samurai wore was special and unique to them, identifying that particular warrior wearing the armor and also to terrify their enemy.
The two women in the film, were of course models but represented what the clothes meant and sort "re-representing" what they mean. The use of red as the background represented a bold,strong, and warrior likein the film like the Shuka cloth of the Maasai people and how Samuraiwould shed blood on their enemies. The gold, in a sense, represent having a high status or royal statusalso compliment red and the women wearing them.
When putting these two cultures together and putting it on a woman it it represents a whole new meaning. Others might see it as an appropriation of cultures because it is putting two different warriors into one and it is also made by someone who has no heritage connection. As a multi-cultural woman, of Japanese and African-American heritage, this film was very captivating, mainly because the film maker himself had no connection between these two opposite cultures and was able to combine them and put the together to convey a new image of a warrior and of a female at that by using clothing that represented strong people.