Awake: All politics, no aesthetics. 

Awake, a Dream From Standing Rock, is all politics and no aesthetics. Or, at its best, its politics are muddled and its aesthetics are weak and unoriginal. Awake is a pastiche-style documentary seemingly designed to stir up outrage over the Standing Rock Protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline. For those unaware, the pipeline transfers oil … Continue reading Awake: All politics, no aesthetics. 

‘The Seventh Fire’: Indians as Objects

There have been panel discussions organized around screenings of The Seventh Fire that wished to address the societal ills that plague the tiny indigenous community depicted in the film. However, any discussion about the film should center around the way the film uses its lyrical, pseudo-documentary style to establish its Native American subjects in the … Continue reading ‘The Seventh Fire’: Indians as Objects

Review: ‘Rhymes for Young Ghouls’ and Surviving the Apocalypse

To non-Native audiences, Rhyme for Young Ghouls will seem mythological in its presentation. The film establishes a real-world framework around a story based on the conventions of popular genres. A title at the beginning of the film tells us that Canada’s Indian Act was responsible for giving Indian agents sweeping power to place them in … Continue reading Review: ‘Rhymes for Young Ghouls’ and Surviving the Apocalypse

Review: ‘Drunktown’s Finest’ Finds its Way Home

Sydney Freeland‘s debut feature Drunktown’s Finest explores notions of identity and connections to home, which are the two most common themes in Indigenous cinema. The film’s three main characters struggle with their connection to their Navajo homeland in a way that is fresh and timely in its approach. The film’s title alone reclaims the dehumanized … Continue reading Review: ‘Drunktown’s Finest’ Finds its Way Home