The critically acclaimed follow up to the highly successful Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner is coming to Eeyou Istchee. The Journals of Knud Rasmussen looks at a Danish explorer’s journals and along with it, the unique journey of his Inuit guides. The Nation spoke to Jacquie Carpenter, Audience Events and Tour manager of the Indigenous Film Network.
Nation: In a nutshell, what is Journals about?
Jacquie Carpenter: It’s kind of complicated. It’s about a Shaman named Aua who lives on the land and basically the surrounding communities have picked up the teachings of Christian missionaries. It’s a struggle between maintaining your own beliefs against Christianity. So it’s a struggle between both worlds that Aua has to make in order to keep his family alive basically.
What is the main reason why people should go see this movie?
I think Norm Cohen says it best. It shows the great divide between the two worlds and just how people cope with it. We hear a lot about First Nations’ struggles with Christianity, but the Inuit also faced the same hardships as it were. It’s two different worlds between First Nations and the Inuit, but they have similar histories.”
How many seals were hurt during filming?
There were no seals in the movie at all.
In one word, how will Crees relate to this film?
I guess in a lot of ways it’s the history of their neighbours. I’m sure they heard stories that are similar in their communities and just to see that their neighbours have gone through the same… But I think also in terms of the company to see how film can really educate and inform people of the truth as told by the Inuit themselves.
Also accompanying the film will be a workshop just to educate people about the power of film. Every community has a story and it can be told. And it is possible and there is a market for it.
How many people up north are named Knud?
I don’t know of any personally.
How did this tour come about?
The Indigenous Film Network is basically Aboriginal film for Aboriginal audiences. It came about from Atanarjuat, which was the first major film by Zacharias and Norm and how it never really hit the Aboriginal audiences and they totally missed the mark on that. I guess we wanted to prove that there is an audience that has been ignored and you don’t want to miss that opportunity with the second film.
This film opened the Toronto International Film Festival, but no one in the north would have actually seen it unless we actually did the tour.
Will it be shown for free? No, it will cost $10 for singles, $15 for couples.
How many stars would you give the film out of five?
It’s a movie that makes you think so it’s very slow-paced in nature. But that gives you time to see the world they live in and how they live. So for me I’d give it a four out of five.
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