Where the Blood Mixes
Irreverently funny and brutally honest, Kevin Loring’s Governor Generals’s Award winning play Where the Blood Mixes is a story of loss and redemption. Can a person survive their past; can a people survive their history? Caught in a shadowy pool of pain and guilt, Floyd is a man who has lost everyone he holds most dear. Now after more than two decades, his daughter Christine returns home to confront her father. Set during the salmon run, at a time when our communities are struggling with the legacy of the Residential School System, Where the Blood Mixes takes us to the bottom of the river, to the heart of a People.
Once Were Warriors
A remake of this powerful New Zealand film in Canada with our own language, cultural, and historical backgrounds; a contemporary revisioning of the urban experience of indigenous peoples surviving a bleak, sometimes soul-crushing reality. Jake the Muss is a former world champion boxer and patriarch of a struggling Ojibway family in North End, Winnipeg. He relives his glory days a few times a week at the local dive bar. Meanwhile his oldest son is being initiated into a dangerous street gang promising a ‘real family’ and younger son Boogie having had one too many run-ins with the cops now lives in the custody of provincial authorities. Our heroine Beth, is the mother and punching bag for Jake. She’s doing her best in a hopeless, abusive situation until her ‘shining light’ fifteen year-old Grace hangs herself in the backyard. Grace’s suicide provides the clarity she needs to make a break from Jake and save what’s left of her family.
In Search of April Raintree
Based on the novel by Beatrice Mosionier In Search of April Raintree is the lifelong story of two Métis sisters, April and Cheryl Raintree, growing up in Manitoba. As young girls they’re taken from their family and each placed into different foster homes. Yet, over the years, the bond between them grows. As they each make their way in a society that is, at times, indifferent, hostile, and violent, they both struggle to find their own identity. One embraces her Métis heritage, while the other tries to leave it behind. In the end, out of tragedy, comes an unexpected legacy of triumph and reclamation. This is a dark part of Canadian history known as The 60’s Scoop.
The Splendid Life of Jesse Dixon
Twenty-something Jesse Dixon inherits Splendid Entertainment, an agency that runs the exotic entertainment industry in a major metropolitan city. Over the course of months of debauchery, including sex, drugs, and rock and roll, Jesse experiences the rise and fall of his empire.
At the height of Disco young half-breed Jesse Dixon leaves his reservation for Winnipeg under suspicious, violent circumstances. He meets Gladys, manager for a lucrative exotic entertainment business who takes him under her wing to teach him the trade. As exclusive members of Elvis Presley’s mutual admiration club they develop a close but professional relationship. One morning Jesse finds Gladys dead in her mansion from a drug overdose. Her lawyer advises Jesse Splendid Entertainment now belongs to him. With considerable wealth and power he enjoys an indulgent lifestyle he never imagined: limousines, fast cars, easy women, drugs, and endless parties. Jesse develops a jaundiced view of the character of women, proclaiming there is no such thing as true love…
Until he meets an exotic Mohawk Indian stripper. He’s immediately smitten, and after a quick courtship they’re married, and Monique becomes pregnant. Everything in Jesse’s life seems perfect until one night a deer jumps in front of their car as the brakes fail. Monique is killed instantly in the car crash. Guilt-ridden over his survival and the loss of his wife and unborn child, he vows he can never love another woman. Without Monique to soothe the ‘savage’ inside Jesse, he becomes self-destructive, drowning his sorrows in drink and drug, and soon enough, his violent past catches up to him.
A Professor’s thesis to understand the nature of evil takes her deep into the history and traditional culture of a Canadian west coast First Nation. This original screenplay by Carolyn Mamchur is based on true events.
Crabs scuttle into the sea as a woman buries her just born son. A moon rises over a mountain as his father unearths him and breathes life back into the baby’s body. Was the child meant, that night, to die? Was his mother aware of the murderous soul within the tiny body? Could she vision his future stay in a residential school, his nature becoming so damaged he was banished by his own people? Could she see his begetting a son so violent he strangled his own wife during a conjugal visit in a prison where he was already serving a life sentence for a brutal sexual murder? Could that mother sense the attraction felt by the very women these men, her blood, would eventually murder? Crabs scuttle into the sea to dine on one of those women as she disappears into the cold, dark water.
Killing the Shamen
The last of the great conjuring Native shamen was so powerful the church and state deemed it necessary to kill him – and it happened in Canada.
This little known story of genocide set in 1907 is a classic clash of cultures tale.
Killing The Shaman follows Jack Fiddler, the last Midewewin Shaman in his epic battle against the sinister Reverend Jeremiah James, mercenary Captain Smith enlisted by the priest to hunt and kill the shaman, and the priest’s teenage daughter Rose who chooses to marry an Indian man in Fiddler’s tribe.
And of course there is the dreaded Windigo spirit of Ojibway lore.
Set in the desolate, snowy outpost of Norway House, Manitoba in 1907 presiding priest Jeremiah James anoints mercenary soldier Daisy Smith as The Divine Messenger, sending him out into the snowy wilderness in search of the shaman known as the Windigo Killer, the only man powerful enough to stop the priest’s ever-expanding hold over the pagan hearts and minds in the expansive northern hemisphere of Upper Canada.
The shaman prophesizes the arrival of Smith, who has developed a taste for human flesh and covets the medicine man’s supernatural abilities. Commanding the forces of nature the shaman makes one final stand in an attempt to save his people.
Perhaps the most famous historical account of the Windigo spirit Killing The Shaman explores the notions of law and order from opposing world views, the supernatural powers of good and evil, and the impact of European religion and law culminating in a timeless, epic tale.