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Indigenous Youth Spotlight

Wednesday April 29 @ 12:45
Films from Wapikoni Mobile
Running Time: 70 minutes
Ages: 12+

Indigenous Youth Spotlight is a showcase of powerful and inspiring short films made by Indigenous youth. The films were produced by Wapikoni, an initiative dedicated to audiovisual creation in Indigenous communities. The films in this collection are sure to spark dialogue as youth explore identity, tradition, the natural world, and colonialism through their own lens.

The Scene is proud to partner with Wapikoni Mobile to present this incredible showcase, which includes documentaries, autobiographical works, music videos, and fictional narratives.

About Wapikoni Mobile

Wapikoni Mobile travels to Aboriginal communities providing workshops for First Nations youth that allow them to master digital tools by directing short films and musical works. During each stopover, "mentor filmmakers" welcome and train thirty young participants during all stages of implementation. Mobility is an integral part of the Wapikoni approach: we "travel to" youth living in Aboriginal communities to offer practical workshops tailored to their reality and their culture. 

Co-founded in 2003 by Manon Barbeau, the Council of the Atikamekw Nation Youth Council and the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador, with the support of the Assembly of First Nations and the collaboration of the National Film Board of Canada, the launch of Wapikoni Mobile took place in 2004 during the Montreal First Peoples Festival. 

Wapikoni Website

Zuyu (The Journey)
Ariel Waskewitch / Stoney / Iyarhe Nakoda / 2017 / 6 mins / Documentary

Zuya is about the journey of a young Nakoda woman and her attempt to strike a balance between a more traditional lifestyle and the modern world around her. In the film we see this balance taking place through images of her dancing in traditional regalia as well as her involvement in the United Nations 16th forum on Indigenous Issues. This film is also about her personal experiences with depression and self-doubt, both of which are addressed through perseverance, her cultural practices, and participation in international advocacy for Indigenous peoples.

Idle No More
Ginger Cote / Kitigan Zibi / Algonquin / 2017 / 5 mins / Experimental

Heather Archibald was a social activist and foster care child who passed away. Her strong words are honoured in this film, demanding a change in the attitude of the Law concerning Native people in Canada. Ginger Côté wants her spirit and message to be remembered for generations to come.

Just Merrill
Merrill Lemaigre / Clearwater River / Dene / 2018 / 5 mins / Essay

A personal and charming essay of what makes Merrill Lemaigre, “Just Merrill”. Open about his queerness, they recount tough times with their family but also about living outside the community.

Katatjatuuk Kangirsumi (Throat Singing in Kangirsuk)
Eva Kaukai, Manon Chamberland / Kangirsuk / Inuit / 3:30 mins / Music video

Eva Kaukai and Manon Chamberland practice the Inuk art of throat singing in their small village of Kangirsuk. Their mesmerizing voices carry through the four seasons of their Arctic land.

More Than a Stereotype
Sinay Kennedy / Clearwater River / Dene / 4 mins / Essay

Frustrated with the stereotypical ways in which Indigenous people are portrayed in mainstream society, Sinay Kennedy presents a personal account of how she is choosing to challenge those stereotypes in her own creative work as an amateur filmmaker, and what her culture means to her.

White Noise
Joleen Mitton / Vancouver / Cree / 6 mins / Experimental

This film is inspired by an original performance piece by Joleen Mitton. Two indigenous youths, a female and a male, are subjected to the threat and dangers of colonization since its beginnings to the modern day. A ceremonial cleansing of the white influence is followed by a return to the land, where the elder embodies knowledge and protection.

Jordan Gordon / Kuujjuaq / Inuit / 5 mins / 2018 / Documentary

Jordan takes us on a hilarious tour of his community.

Nadu (Hair)
Jarret Twoyoungmen / Stoney / Iyarhe Nakoda / 7 mins / 2019 / Documentary

In this documentary, Jarret Twoyoungmen shares an important aspect of the Nakoda culture and tradition.

Carrying On the Tradition
Nimki Peltier / Wikwemikong / Anishnabe / 5 mins / 2017 / Documentary

Nimki is a young dancer from Wiikwemkong. He has struggled with depression until traditional dancing reconnected him with his culture, his family, and himself.

Outreach Alternative / Vancouver / 6 mins / 2018 / Documentary

A group project entirely produced by the Outreach Alternative Britannia students, this short film aims at breaking the negative stigmas too often associated with alternative schools.

You’ve Got to Fight
Elizabeth Lemaigre / Clearwater River / Dene / 1:30 mins / 2018 / Music video

First-time director Elizabeth Lemaigre created moving visuals to accompany the song You’ve Got To Fight about perseverance and moving forward.

Nuhe nenë boghílníh (Protecting our Homeland)
Ashton Janvier / Clearwater River / Dene / 4 mins / 2017 / Documentary

This film seeks to inspire the young generation to start caring about our lands and culture while raising awareness about the ravages of uranium mining in Patterson Lake, SK. My Favourite Food is Indian Tacos, My Favourite Drink is Iced Tea and My Favourite Thing is

Derius Matchewan/ Kitiganik / Anishnabe / 4 mins / 2018 / Documentary

A film about courage and the passions young Darius shares with his friends.

Érik Papatie / Lac-Simon / Anishnabe / 6 mins / 2017 / Fiction

A mysterious blue rock keeps bothering Érik who's trying to carry on his daily routine. He soon discovers that it has magical powers that can cause a lot of trouble.

Mattais Twoyoungmen / Stoney / Sioux / 3 mins / 2017 / Music video

These society outcasts want their perspectives and knowledge to be heard.

Filmmaker Biographies