Travel Blog • Pam Mandel
Comment: Previous postings said Barbarian Princess was the working title before producer Marc Forby chose the title Princess Kaiulani. But IMDB.com lists it as Barbarian Princess (aka Princess Kaiulani). So Barbarian Princess may be the final title.
Just because the press of the day used the phrase "Barbarian Princess" doesn't make it a good title. The press also called Indians things like "Heathen Savages," "Dirty Redskins" and "Murderous Devils," but I wouldn't choose those as titles for a Native-themed movie.
Many people won't get the irony or even see the movie, so they'll think "Hawaiians = barbarians." I suggest something that combats stereotypes--like "500 Nations" or "We Shall Remain"--not something that reinforces them.
As for the trailer, this movie looks like a Victorian-era costume drama set in England or America east of the Mississippi to me. It doesn't have much of the lush feel I associate with Hawaii.
Obviously it shouldn't show hula girls or blond surfers or tourists in leis. But where are all the Hawaiian and Asian peoples and cultures? Where are all the scenic landscapes?
Having read James Michener's Hawaii, watched Hawaii Five-0, and visited Hawaii twice, I'd say this movie should look and feel uniquely Hawaiian. I'm not getting that sense from the trailer.
For more on the subject, see The Best Indian Movies.