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Where the Spirit Lives (1989)

 -  Drama  -  6 June 1990 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 176 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 1 critic

A young Native Canadian (First Nations person) fights to keep her culture and identity when she is abducted to a residential school.

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Title: Where the Spirit Lives (1989)

Where the Spirit Lives (1989) on IMDb 7.4/10

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7 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michelle St. John ...
Komi / Amelia
Kim Bruisedhead Fox ...
Anataki
Marianne Jones ...
Komi's Mother
Gus Chief Moon ...
Ka - moos - ee
Clayton Julian ...
Pita / Abraham
Margaret Cozry ...
Grandmother
Marge Fox ...
Anataki's Mother
Ron White ...
Taggert
Ann-Marie MacDonald ...
Kathleen
Sean Mulcahy ...
Priest
Sam Malkin ...
Mr. Crawford
Doris Petrie ...
Miss Weir
Chapelle Jaffe ...
Miss Appleby
Tina Louise Bomberry ...
Asst. Supervisor #2 (as Tina Bomberry)
Barbara Wheeldon ...
Matron
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Storyline

In 1937, a young First Nations (Canadian native) girl named Ashtecome is kidnapped along with several other children from a village as part of a deliberate Canadian policy to force First Nations children to abandon their culture in order to be assimilated into white Canadian/British society. She is taken to a boarding school where she is forced to adopt Western Euro-centric ways and learn English, often under brutal treatment. Only one sympathetic white teacher who is more and more repelled by this bigotry offers her any help from among the staff. That, with her force of will, Ashtecome (forced to take the name Amelia) is determined to hold on to her identity and that of her siblings, who were also abducted. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A moving tribute to a young girl's courage and indomitable spirit...

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

6 June 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Henkien tanssi  »

Filming Locations:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film had a special 25th anniversary showing at the 2013 Cinefest in Sudbury Ontario. See more »

Quotes

Kathleen: You must find it very satisfying to be helping these poor children get a good education. Learn to read and write and have a wider understanding of the world?
Taggert: Did they tell you anything about this school or about teaching the Indians?
Kathleen: Yes, of course. It's a fine Christian institution doing God's work and the children - well, children are the same anywhere. They need love, patience and careful guidance... And just why are you grinning at me like a great ape?
Taggert: Well, ma'am, it's just been a long ...
[...]
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User Reviews

 
A movie packed with information but can get a little boring at times.
2 February 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

This was a great movie I thought at portraying the native life in the schools but I thought that it was a little unbelievable. If someone was trapped in a plane the more logical choice than pounding on the window would to be try and find a handle, I thought the characters at times made foolish choices like following the road after escaping instead of going across the prairies to make it harder for the man to catch you. Other than that it was a good movie although difficult to follow the plot at times it was entertaining in some parts but a lot of the time became very, very boring which is why I only wanted to give it a 6 out of 10. I would not recommend this movie to anyone who just wanted to watch something but it would be a good in school movie as it deals with racism and a great amount of other things.


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