Monday, October 19, 2009

Preamble: ImagineNative shorts program

It should go without saying that the existence of indigenous filmmaking initiatives - and film festivals like ImagineNative to encourage them - are good things in and of themselves. It doesn't, unfortunately. So I'm saying it, and I'll also mention that it's entirely possible that some of these films may not be designed primarily for an interloper's eyes, making my critical insights less than scientific. But that's no radical departure around here.

Also, while it wasn't quite a movie, let me add a slack-jawed ovation for Tanya Tagaq, who breezed through the festival on two occasions and whose 'contemporary' take on Inuit throat singing floored me both solo and in collective improv: without surrendering an inch of her heritage she effortlessly fuses the left-field passion of Yoko Ono with the centerfield technical command and reach of American Idol, and I mean both as the greatest of compliments. Her impassioned, multi-role embodiment of the Northern life cycle in the CGI short "Tungijuq" was a highlight as well.

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