|Index||3 reviews in total|
Canada just keeps getting better at making these pioneer pieces. BIG BEAR is a mini-epic that tells the story of a rebel chief who refused to accept inferior land from the Canadian government at the expense of a better, long term future for his people. Although his decision brought short term tragedies to his people and himself, his name remains synonymous with one who has enough foresight and will power to not compromise his principles. The short term tragedies are heart wrenching: the killing of dogs and horses to stave off starvation, the prostitution of young women to get meat from the powers that be, the pressure put on them by other First Nations people to accept the treaty land, and the sub plot of defending Louis Riel and the Metis. This is Gil Cardinal's best film to date. Yes, nepotism abounds: the film has more Cardinals than the Vatican. However, that this film is a quasi-family affair only accentuates the love Cardinal has put into this film. The camera work symbolism(the buffalo vanishing off the face of the earth, Big Bear's spirit shape shifting into a block of stone)all come off masterfully. Co-author Rudy Wiebe's white man "garble talk" is a nice in-joke penance to all the Hollywood films that had the Indians speaking gibberish. If you have access to CBC merchandizing, I'd recommend you pick up this mini classic and I hope you find it as rewarding as I did.
This movie is the only one I've come across so far that is filmed
entirely from the Indians' point of view.
The fact that the Natives speak English and the Whites gobbledygook makes it possible for the viewer to relate to them much better than in movies where they speak native languages. Brilliant idea!
I liked that the Indians were using "White" tools and clothes. There are many movies depicting the mid- to late 1800s in which whole tribes are clad entirely in buckskin, which is not realistic because by that time, Indians had been in contact with Whites for a good 300 years.
"Big Bear" proves that you don't need loincloths and leggings to tell a compelling story about historical Indians. You need convincing characters portrayed by good actors, and "Big Bear" has those - and more.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Well I really wanted to comment on this movie because, well I was in it!!!!!Yeah my name is Kiera Beauvais and as of now I am 14 years old. I played Summer, the grand-daughter of Big Bear in this film. I loved the movie after I saw the finished version. I thought this movie was great and well I loved being in it. My best friend while I was doing this movie was Simon Baker. Simon is an awesome actor and so is Gordon, Tantoo, and everyone else in the movie. When I watched this movie I was so happy to see the finished product. Watching this movie was so great and it reminded me of how much fun I had during the filming of it. Well anyways I really loved watching this movie, it was very educational and it showed a lot that was going on during that time.
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