Eating Up Easter

Honolulu Museum of Art Honolulu, HI


Mahina Paishon-Duarte

Co-founder and Managing Partner, Waiwai Collective


Laurien “Lala” Nuss

Climate Resilience and Equity Manager, City and County of Honolulu’s Office of Climate Change, Sustainability and Resiliency


Kalani Ka‘anā‘anā

Director of Hawaiian Cultural Affairs & Natural Resources, Hawaii Tourism Authority

moderated by

Sergio Mata’u Rapu


Eating Up Easter— Regenerative tourism and restorative economies in Hawaiʻi

A panel of local changemakers—people who are re-envisioning local economies, questioning business as usual, and working to ensure the future sustainability for Hawaiʻi—discuss the impacts of tourism in light of COVID-19 and how we can consider the practices of regenerative tourism and restorative economies in our community's path forward.

Honolulu Museum of Art Honolulu, HI

Film Synopsis

The most isolated community in the Pacific grapples with environmental and social challenges brought on by booming tourism and rapid development.

The iconic statues and sensationalized "mysteries" of Easter Island (Rapa Nui) have drawn the interest of the world for centuries, attracting curious visitors to its shores. Today, this tiny, barren island is experiencing an economic boon as tourism skyrockets. Yet the indigenous culture and the island’s fragile environment are suffering.

EATING UP EASTER, directed by native Rapanui filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu, explores the dilemma his people are facing. Crafted as a story passed down to his newborn son, Sergio intertwines the authentic history of the island with the stories of four islanders. In their own voices, these Rapanui reveal the reality of modern life and the actions they are taking to preserve their culture and environment amidst rapid development.

A local ecologist leads recycling efforts to tackle the mounting trash arriving with tourists and the waves of plastic washing up on shore. Two musicians struggle to build a free music school they hope will preserve cultural practices and reunite their fractured community. Sergio's father, formerly the island's first native Governor, attempts to balance traditions against the advantages of development while building a mini-mall in the island’s only town.
EATING UP EASTER reveals and suggests ways forward in tackling the universal complexities of balancing growth and sustainability faced by local communities worldwide.