The White Dawn (1974)

R  |   |  Adventure, Drama, History  |  21 July 1974 (USA)
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In 1896, three whalers are stranded in the Arctic North Canada and seek refuge with an Eskimo tribe. Gradually they gain control with the Eskimo village and introduce gambling, booze, theft... See full summary »



(novel), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Portagee (as Lou Gossett)
Joanasie Salamonie ...
Simonie Kopapik ...
Pilitak ...
Sagiaktok ...
Munamee Sako ...
Pitseolai Kili ...
Sowaiapik's Wife
Meetook Mallee ...
Seemee Nookiguak ...
Sakkeassie ...
Dirty Boy
Akshooyooliak ...
Old Mother
Nilak Butler ...
Oolipika Joamie ...


In 1896, three whalers are stranded in the Arctic North Canada and seek refuge with an Eskimo tribe. Gradually they gain control with the Eskimo village and introduce gambling, booze, theft and their special variation of sex. In the beginning, the Eskimos accept it but slowly the cultural tension starts growing. Written by Frank Christensen <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A True Story of an Artic Adventure. See more »


R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

21 July 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bialy swit  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TV premiere)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


According to producer Irwin Winkler, this movie was the main factor in his decision to invite director Philip Kaufman to direct The Right Stuff (1983). See more »

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User Reviews

Slow but interesting
12 February 2013 | by (Victoria, BC) – See all my reviews

"The White Dawn" unfolds at a pace that I'm pretty sure many young people will be turned off by. There isn't really much of a plot here, for starters, and the movie unfolds at a pretty leisurely pace. Also, there isn't a terrible about of development for the characters played by Oates, Bottoms, and Gossett. But I have to admit that despite all that, I found the movie fairly captivating. The movie is slow, but it has a kind of hypnotic spell that kept me watching. Also, the depiction of the Inuit seems pretty authentic - I'm no expert on Inuit culture, but it sure seemed authentic. (One interesting detail is that it shows that the Inuit didn't have some sort of paradise lifestyle - they had problems like starvation, for example.) If you are looking for a movie that is quite different than usual - both in its subject matter and its telling - this movie is worth a look.

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