In the 17th century a Jesuit priest and a young companion are escorted through the wilderness of Quebec by Algonquin Indians to find a distant mission in the dead of winter. The Jesuit experiences a spiritual journey while his young companion falls in love with the Algonquin chief's beautiful daughter underneath the imposing and magnificent mountains. Dread and death follows them upriver. Written by
Keith Loh <firstname.lastname@example.org>
It took over four years to find financing for the film. No American studio was interested in doing it because it was about religion, so eventually the finance was drummed up from European and Canadian sources. Even with Oscar nominee Bruce Beresford expressing a desire to be at the helm, the Canadian investors were still very hard to convince until Beresford's previous film, Driving Miss Daisy (1989), won the 1989 Oscar for Best Film. The success of Dances with Wolves (1990) was also instrumental in helping the film to get made. See more »
The French girl plays a recorder solo from 'Der Fluyten Lust-hof" published in 1644, while the film is set in 1634. See more »
I'm a history student of second grade of a french canadian university. So, in a history point of view, I can assure you that this movie is simply amazing. The story is about a jesuite priest who wants to bring catholic faith to the Indians of the french colony Nouvelle-France (New France, the future Quebec of Canada) in the seventeen century. In fact, there was a lot of jesuite doing that by that time. The priest and his young translator ask the Algonquins natives to guide them to the Hurons natives. That is also exactly correct! But in their quest,they had some problems with the Iroquois natives. And that is exactly right! At the end, the priest reach the Hurons. The chief of the tribe tells that if they accept the god of the priest, they will become weak and their ennemies will kill them. And that's what's gonna happen! In fact, the Hurons were the first Indians of New France to accept catholic religion. I saw the movie with the french dubbing. The Indians of that time didn't knew how to prononce R. So, in the movie, they say : obe noie, instead of Robe Noire (Black Robe). I don't know if they said black obe in the English version. In one scence, the priest tells the Indian sorcerer that he is reading a breviaire (book of prayers). And the sorcerer said: beviaire, witout the R. The way the natives are dressed and wears their hairs is also very exact in an historical view. This is not only a great movie, but an amazing reconstitution. Natives actors are great, with August Schlleberg, the always good Tantoo Cardinal and the charming young Sandrine Holt. Lothaire Blutheau is one of the best french canadian actor (see him in Jesus of Montreal). This is absolutely a superb piece of work ! And some kind of perfect history book.
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