Walking home on a dreary day in Vancouver, Áila (Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers) finds herself in the middle of an altercation between a surly man and a meek Indigenous woman. The woman, Rosie (Violet Nelson), has been roughed up. With instinctual grace and with Rosie’s permission, Áila steps in and separates Rosie from this argument, and invites the stranger into her house for safety and comfort.
Kevin Hearn, keyboardist for The Barenaked Ladies and an avid art collector, accidentally opened a can of worms by purchasing a painting by late indigenous artist Norval Morrisseau. During an exhibit of Hearn’s curated pieces at the Art Gallery of Ontario, his Morrisseau was proven to be bogus. This pivotal event (which also led to a lengthy court case) pulled a thread, unravelling conflicting opinions surrounding a remarkable mystery behind Morrisseau’s work.
nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up exhibits how strong voices can persevere during tragic times. Not since Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine has a documentary been made with this much love for a life lost.
By: Trevor Chartrand You’ll be hard pressed to find a more Canadian film than The Grizzlies; the inspiring true story of an impoverished Nunavut community battling mental illness by creating a sports team. Over ten years in the making, this long-time passion project of director Miranda de Pencier is a not only a well-made dramatic film, but also a small taste of the type of media representation First Nations and Inuit citizens deserve.
Through Black Spruce, most of the time, is on the right track. Unfortunately, its disappointing streaks are during the final stretch of the film.
Indian Horse is ingrained with prejudice experienced by Canada’s Indigenous people. Director Stephen S. Campanelli, who is usually hired as a camera operator on mainstream films, gives his audience a firsthand perspective of this chilling history while adapting Richard Wagamese’s award-winning novel of the same name.
Eco-friendly independent documentaries are sometimes a hard sell to the general moviegoing public. Unless you have pre-invested interest in the subject matter (in this case, fracking) or the film’s guiding hand (in this case, indigenous activist Caleb Behn), these movies can come across as droning strolls through textbooks of material. It’s a shame since so many of these films are thoughtful and important.