Indigenous Film from BC & Beyond: Short Film Program 
Agua—Water Stories 

Tuesday, Aug 28 | 6:30 PM | SFU Woodward’s
Followed by a post-screening dialogue.
Directors Uapukun Mestokosho Mckenzie & Shanice Mollen-Picard in attendance.

Free admission (with VLAFF membership – $2)   

Through the transformative space of diverse film media, including documentary and animation, the perspectives of Indigenous peoples from Canada and Latin America, as well as those of settlers, merge to draw us all into water worlds. Merging some of the best and most recent short works, the program explores the relationship(s) with and perspectives on water by Indigenous peoples and their allies. Audience members are invited to learn from the local knowledge keepers and allies of the flows and tides that sustain our hopes for life. – Sonia Medel, Curator

  Running Time:  82 mins  


Director: Amanda Strong (Michif)vPoetic narration: The Northwest Kid (Craig Frank Eds of Mob Bounce) 
Canada, 4 min 

Driven by a haunting, yet progressive sound design, Flood is a hybrid of shadow puppetry, digital, and stop-motion animation that spins the story of truth vs. deception. Two characters, Spider Woman and Thunderbird, act as vessels composing and carrying the story of an Indigenous youth named Thunder, navigating her way through a colonial flood. Spider Woman battles against an old Ghost Judge who frenetically writes history from the side of oppression and displacement. The Ghost Judge fills the entire world with his writings and law.  

Directors: Stephanie Boyd & Miguel Araoz 
Peru, 13.50 min 
Community/Language: Kukama 

 A brave Kukama woman from Peru’s Amazon defends her river and community from the pressures of the modern world. The film “shines light on a culturally relevant topic, manifesting a critical position about the relationship between Indigenous peoples and the state through a sensitive audiovisual treatment that allows us to get close to the Kukama Kukamiria’s point of view.”- Peru’s Ministry of Culture, Best Short Film from Cusco Award 

Director: Peter Mieras First Nation advisers: Darrell Ross Sr. & Tom Watts Canada, 7′ . Community/Language: Tseshaht First Nation/Nuu chah nulth 

 A contemplation of the life cycle story of the wild Pacific salmon and its importance to and connection with the Tseshaht First Nation. 


Director: Christopher Auchtor (Haida) 
Canada, 10 min No dialogue  

A magical tale of a young hunter who is captured by a SGaana (killer whale) and dragged into the spirit world, and the courageous woman who sets off to save him. Haida filmmaker Christopher Auchter’s dream-like gem brilliantly entwines traditional animation with formal elements of Haida art, which are brought to life by a rich, evocative palette and stylized effects.  


YAKU CHASKI WARMIKUNA (Messengers of the River) 
Director: Luz Estrello 
Ecuador, 5.12 min Kichwa Ancestral Community: Kausac Sacha 

In the Amazon, women from different Indigenous communities have been fighting to stop the expansion of the oil frontier announced by the Ecuadorian government and transnational capital interests. Realizing that their efforts were falling on deaf ears, the women decided to take things into their own hands and follow the natural course of the threatened rivers, carrying the message of the imminent need to defend them to their Amazonian communities. This expedition is called Yaku Chaski Warmikuna, a journey through the Ecuadorian jungle; a courageous trek in defense of nature and the rights of women.  


NENDOK BETWEEN LAGOONS (Nendok entre lagunas) 
Director: Juan Ernesto Regalado Morales 
Mexico, 23.37 min Community/Language: Ikoots, San Mateo del Mar, Oaxaca/Ombeayiüts  

Wenceslao, a fisherman from San Mateo del Mar, faces adversity and scarcity due to the construction of wind farms in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Oaxaca. 

Filmmakers: The Mapuche Communication and Cinema School of Aylla Rewe Budi 
Chile, 8 min 
Communities: Lafkenche,Llaguepulli, Malalhue,Williche, Relicura et Quetroleofu 

Nation: Mapuche 

The ocean, with its colours, sounds and energies infuse with spirit and wisdom the dialogue between two young girls and their grandfathers. We, Mapuche Lafkenche, observe the ocean’s Az so that we may become one with it, maintaining the balance of our relationship with this space that we call Lafkenmapu. 


Director: Amanda Strong (Michif) Spoken lyrics: Leanne Betasamosake Simpson (Nishnaabeg) Score: Cris Derkson (Cree) 
Canada, 4 min  

A young Nishnaabeg woman and an elder Nishnaabeg man rescue a canoe from a museum and return it to the lake it was meant to be with. On a deeper level, we witness the act of stealing back the precious parts of us, that were always ours in the first place as Indigenous people.  


SHIPU (Riviėre) 
Directors: Uapukun Mestokosho Mckenzie & Shanice Mollen-Picard 
Quebec, 5.42 min Community: Ekuanitshit–Mingan 
Nation: Innu 

Aware of numerous environmental dangers that the Innu territory faces, two young women, passionate about canoeing, remind us of the fundamental role of the rivers–”The ancestors’ highways,” as they are called in Innu culture. With political and poetical tones, this documentary shows the importance of protecting the rivers and Aboriginal identity.