Imaginative 2010

Last fall, I had the opportunity to attend the ImagiNative Film Festival in Toronto Ontario. Since this annual event is happening today, I felt it appropriate to post on my experiences with the festival. 

The festival is sponsored by the Canadian government through various programs intended to encourage “young aboriginal artists and performers”. Entry into this festival, for this year was quite ambiguous meaning, directors, producers, actors, or topics with indigenous identities were allowed. This created a wide variety of feature-length and shorts for the audience, but there were obvious themes that emerged as I attended many of the films. There were many documentaries about the environment and identity, and then in one of the “shorts sessions” there films, animation and real-life, that retold traditional stories from various parts of the world. For example, Lumaajuuq which was based on an Inuit legend, details the relationship between humans and narwhal whales. This film was animated, but the delivery and message were clear and strong, and I really felt like an elder was telling me the tale. Another film that caught my interest was a short film called, Stones, which was about a Hawaiian legend and was shot on location with Hawaiian speakers. The use of the Hawaiian language, with English subtitles was very inspiring and in the same session another film called, Wapawekka was also shown. Wapawekka was a fantastic short that dealt with intergenerational disconnect within a Cree family. However, the best part was that the film was preformed in Cree and English AND had English and Cree subtitles, using the Cree syllabary! The use of this syllabary reaffirms not only the Cree language, but the autonomy of the film maker (who is Cree) to choose when and how to translate the dialogue. The filmmaker was at the festival and told us that the actors used in the film were family members and close family friends. Her father, who was the main character in the film, was also at the festival to support his daughter and admitted that if anyone else would have asked him to act in a film, he would have said no. This is a great example of familial support and I immediately related to the young film maker, when I think about all of the things my family is willing and has done for me! Like reading and commenting on my blog, cough, cough…

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Jake says:

    why do you always get to go to all these cool things?!?!

    also always good to see someone thank their family because I think family is always important.

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