The Legend of Baron To’a

The Legend of Baron To’a

The Legend of Baron To’a

In this Kiwi action-comedy, a Tongan entrepreneur returns to his old neighbourhood and inadvertently causes the theft of his late father’s valued pro wrestling title belt. Failing to retrieve it, his only choice is to embrace his father's legacy. The feature directorial debut of Kiel McNaughton, co-producer of Waru and Vai.

2020Rating: RP13, Violence & offensive language105 minsNew Zealand
ActionComedy

Streaming (4 Providers)

Reviews & comments

Flicks

Flicks, Steve Newall

flicks

An all-star Pasifika and Māori cast, a state house cul-de-sac setting and great local soundtrack (Church & AP, SWIDT) combine to lend a distinctive flavour to this Aotearoa entrant in the action-comedy genre. While the poster artwork may look to have liberated the font from Fast & Furious, The Legend of Baron To’a feels more indebted to the likes of Hong Kong action pics in structure and fight sequences, perhaps even some of its characterisations, but fuses its disparate elements together to prove a unique, kick-ass crack-up.

4.0

Aotearoa Film Game Changer

What a debut from director Kiel McNaughton. This is a Coming of Age story never seen come out of Aotearoa. The story centres around Fritz, the son of the legendary wrestling icon Baron To'a, returning home from Australia to sell up and move on. When he arrives his childhood neighborhood is not the peaceful cul-de-sac he remembers. Instead it's home to the...

5.0

Loved it!

This was a great movie to watch, and I'd urge you to go and see it. It felt like it had a great combination of laughs and satire like so many other Kiwi productions, with little bits of other Pacifica focussed movies like Sione's Wedding, and some with more edgy history like Once Were Warriors. Cool to see familiar Kiwi faces doing choice things, with...

5.0

Heart-warming kiwi- Tongan comedy with a PUNCH

Another classic to add to NZ Cinema! I've always enjoyed NZ cinema and this film is no different! The Legend of Baron To'a is classic comedy with a heart-warming message about the Value and Importance of Family. But oh boy did this film pack a punch! The action and fight scenes push this film further, alongside the Tongan and Kiwi humour, this film makes...

4.0

Pro wrestling with a pacific twist

The lead character fritz would certainly be a head turner in most neighbourhoods, but definitely in this cul de sac in south Auckland. The only son of the legend that is baron to’a is not quite what you’d expect, an intellectual more than a wrestling convert. A definite thorn in the side of the local cop excellently portrayed by Xavier Horan of outrageous...

3.0

Must-See Film, Worth Watching

I urge you to watch this must see film, it's funny, action packed, enjoyable and you'll most probably want to watch it again, i know i do. The storyline is a crossover between tongan history and ganglife or streetlife you might say and I love how they added wrestling as a twist, could maybe be paying homage to former wwe wrestler Haku. I find the quotes...

5.0

Great Kiwi movie

A nice addition to NZ cinema. Creative, full-on fighting scenes without gun violence. The kiwi Banshee. The cast was excellent and it was nice to see Jay Laga'aia and Shavaughn Ruakere on our screens again!

4.0

I absolutely loved this movie. The best I’ve seen in a long time. Great local talent, loved the action and seeing the different way of life, especially the life lessons that can be learnt. Walked away afterwards thinking about it and recommended to my friends and family.

5.0

OOOOOOH YEEEAAAAAH!!

Macho Man Randy Savage was my fave wrestler back in the day, I took my son to see this and we both loved it!! Probably for different reasons, but any film about wrestling set in NZ with a great local cast and Tongan culture , flair and flavour was appreciated big time!! Fun film with tongue firmly in cheek, some great action sequences and a big heart!! 4...

4.0
FilmInk

FilmInk

press

…like a bombastic graphic novel brought roaring to cinematic life, where every punch, beat and quotable piece of dialogue is a certified haymaker.

Sydney Morning Herald

Sydney Morning Herald

press

There are points when The Legend of Baron To’a feels like one big in-joke, designed mainly to entertain the filmmakers, along with viewers who know the setting well enough to get an automatic kick out of seeing extravagant action sequences staged in their own backyard. But even to outsiders the film has the charm of a homemade object, not quite like anything else.

3.0
FilmInk

FilmInk

press

...like a bombastic graphic novel brought roaring to cinematic life, where every punch, beat and quotable piece of dialogue is a certified haymaker.

New Zealand Listener

New Zealand Listener

press

Less hardy viewers may find it too violent and insufficiently funny, and it’s true that for most of the movie Baron To’a delivers more of a well-acted if violent drama than a slapstick comedy in the spirit of Three Wise Cousins or Take Home Pay.

Stuff

Stuff

press

While very much a lighter look at South Auckland life than Once Were Warriors and What Becomes of the Broken Hearted?, Legend still packs a narrative punch. That it will likely appeal to both younger audiences and those who grew up watching pro-wrestling on TV in the 1970s and '80s just makes it even more of a triumph.

4.0
Flicks

Flicks, Steve Newall

flicks

An all-star Pasifika and Māori cast, a state house cul-de-sac setting and great local soundtrack (Church & AP, SWIDT) combine to lend a distinctive flavour to this Aotearoa entrant in the action-comedy genre. While the poster artwork may look to have liberated the font from Fast & Furious, The Legend of Baron To’a feels more indebted to the likes of Hong Kong action pics in structure and fight sequences, perhaps even some of its characterisations, but fuses its disparate elements together to prove a unique, kick-ass crack-up.

4.0
FilmInk

FilmInk

press

…like a bombastic graphic novel brought roaring to cinematic life, where every punch, beat and quotable piece of dialogue is a certified haymaker.

Sydney Morning Herald

Sydney Morning Herald

press

There are points when The Legend of Baron To’a feels like one big in-joke, designed mainly to entertain the filmmakers, along with viewers who know the setting well enough to get an automatic kick out of seeing extravagant action sequences staged in their own backyard. But even to outsiders the film has the charm of a homemade object, not quite like anything else.

3.0
FilmInk

FilmInk

press

...like a bombastic graphic novel brought roaring to cinematic life, where every punch, beat and quotable piece of dialogue is a certified haymaker.

New Zealand Listener

New Zealand Listener

press

Less hardy viewers may find it too violent and insufficiently funny, and it’s true that for most of the movie Baron To’a delivers more of a well-acted if violent drama than a slapstick comedy in the spirit of Three Wise Cousins or Take Home Pay.

Stuff

Stuff

press

While very much a lighter look at South Auckland life than Once Were Warriors and What Becomes of the Broken Hearted?, Legend still packs a narrative punch. That it will likely appeal to both younger audiences and those who grew up watching pro-wrestling on TV in the 1970s and '80s just makes it even more of a triumph.

4.0

Aotearoa Film Game Changer

What a debut from director Kiel McNaughton. This is a Coming of Age story never seen come out of Aotearoa. The story centres around Fritz, the son of the legendary wrestling icon Baron To'a, returning home from Australia to sell up and move on. When he arrives his childhood neighborhood is not the peaceful cul-de-sac he remembers. Instead it's home to the...

5.0

Loved it!

This was a great movie to watch, and I'd urge you to go and see it. It felt like it had a great combination of laughs and satire like so many other Kiwi productions, with little bits of other Pacifica focussed movies like Sione's Wedding, and some with more edgy history like Once Were Warriors. Cool to see familiar Kiwi faces doing choice things, with...

5.0

Heart-warming kiwi- Tongan comedy with a PUNCH

Another classic to add to NZ Cinema! I've always enjoyed NZ cinema and this film is no different! The Legend of Baron To'a is classic comedy with a heart-warming message about the Value and Importance of Family. But oh boy did this film pack a punch! The action and fight scenes push this film further, alongside the Tongan and Kiwi humour, this film makes...

4.0

Pro wrestling with a pacific twist

The lead character fritz would certainly be a head turner in most neighbourhoods, but definitely in this cul de sac in south Auckland. The only son of the legend that is baron to’a is not quite what you’d expect, an intellectual more than a wrestling convert. A definite thorn in the side of the local cop excellently portrayed by Xavier Horan of outrageous...

3.0

Must-See Film, Worth Watching

I urge you to watch this must see film, it's funny, action packed, enjoyable and you'll most probably want to watch it again, i know i do. The storyline is a crossover between tongan history and ganglife or streetlife you might say and I love how they added wrestling as a twist, could maybe be paying homage to former wwe wrestler Haku. I find the...

5.0

Great Kiwi movie

A nice addition to NZ cinema. Creative, full-on fighting scenes without gun violence. The kiwi Banshee. The cast was excellent and it was nice to see Jay Laga'aia and Shavaughn Ruakere on our screens again!

4.0

I absolutely loved this movie. The best I’ve seen in a long time. Great local talent, loved the action and seeing the different way of life, especially the life lessons that can be learnt. Walked away afterwards thinking about it and recommended to my friends and family.

5.0

OOOOOOH YEEEAAAAAH!!

Macho Man Randy Savage was my fave wrestler back in the day, I took my son to see this and we both loved it!! Probably for different reasons, but any film about wrestling set in NZ with a great local cast and Tongan culture , flair and flavour was appreciated big time!! Fun film with tongue firmly in cheek, some great action sequences and a big heart!! 4...

4.0