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Centuries ago, in what would become the Canadian Arctic, Atuat is promised to the malevolent Oki, son of the leader of their tribe. But Atuat loves the good-natured Atanarjuat, who ultimately finds a way to marry her. Oki's sister, Puja also fancies Atanarjuat, and when she causes strife between him and his brother Amaqjuaq, Oki seizes the opportunity to wreak a terrible revenge on Atanarjuat. Written by
Shannon Patrick Sullivan <email@example.com>
The atmosphere, the culture, the legend brought to life, the score, the people, it was magical realism done right. I read a lot of insulting reader comments on this film, and I am so glad I went to see it anyway. It was long, but it was in no way slow. I was riveted.
True, it did have a documentary feel... but I like documentaries... you could think of it as a documentary on Inuit legends and story telling as seen by the story tellers and their listeners. The effect was to allow the audience to share the feelings of persons in an alien culture.
The score was eclectic, effectively changing from Inuit chants to Gyuto Monk chants, and then to eerie Bulgarian choral music, and back to Inuit. Again, the effect was to blur cultural boundaries and move the viewer away from the familiar and into the Inuit.
If there was one small fault, the subtitles were done in white, which did not always show up against the landscape. Yellow might have been a better choice.
I suspect that if you are a fan of Jim Jarmusch's "Dead Man" (as I am) then you will be one of this film as well.
15 of 21 people found this review helpful.
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