John Ford's classic western The Searchers has been a focal point for debate over its treatment of race and racism, as well as a touchstone for many films and filmmakers over the years, including Martin Scorsese, Paul Schrader and George Lucas. It's also the avowed inspiration for the new film from Zacharias Kunuk, whose 2001 movie Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner is recognized as a masterpiece of Canadian cinema.
Kunuk has pointedly chosen to remove race from the equation. Set in 1913, Searchers is a spiritual fable. When Kuanana returns from the hunt, he discovers a rival has raided his igloo, kidnapped his wife and daughter and slaughtered the rest of his family. He sets off in pursuit, guided by the spirit loon...
Kunuk forges a cinema that draws both from classic Hollywood and from Inuk storytelling traditions; it's ethnographic and mythic, spectacular and spiritual. There are thrilling action sequences here-the vivid icy exteriors are as stunning as Ford's Monument Valley-but also low-light sequences inside igloos that are thrillingly strange and mysterious. Award-winning throat singer Tanya Tagaq contributes to the otherworldly score.
|Original Language Title:||Maliglutit|
|Running Time:||94 minutes|
|Producers:||Jonathan Frantz, Cara Di Staulo|
|Principal Cast:||Benjamin Kunuk, Jocelyne Immaroitok, Karen Ivalu, Joseph Uttak, Joey Sarpinak|
|Editor:||Zacharias Kunuk, Norman Cohn|
|Music:||Tanya Tagaq, Chris Crilly|