A story within a story. In Australia's Northern Territory, a man tells us one of the stories of his people and his land. It's a story of an older man, Minygululu, who has three wives and ...
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A story within a story. In Australia's Northern Territory, a man tells us one of the stories of his people and his land. It's a story of an older man, Minygululu, who has three wives and realizes that his younger brother Dayindi may try to steal away the youngest wife. So, over a few days and several trips to hunt and gather, Minygululu tells Dayindi a story set in the time of their ancestors when a stranger came to the village and disrupted the lives of a serious man named Ridjimiraril, his three wives, and his younger brother Yeeralparil who had no wife and liked to visit his youngest sister-in-law. Through stories, can values be taught and balance achieved? Written by
The title "Ten Canoes" was inspired by a photograph shown to Director Rolf de Heer by Aboriginal actor David Gulpilil. The picture was of group of ten native men in their bark canoes on the Arafura swamp. The photo was taken by anthropologist Dr Donald Thomson who worked in central and north-eastern Arnhem Land seventy years earlier during the mid-1930s. See more »
[all walking in a line]
[all stop and turn]
That one is Djigirr. Djigirr talk too much, but maybe he heard something.
I refuse to walk at the end. Someone ahead keeps farting.
Not me. Not me.
It's you again. You're always so silent. Silent but deadly. Admit it.
Alright, it's me.
You're rotten inside.
I'm rotten inside.
[...] See more »
"Ten Canoes" tells three stories: That of the storyteller himself, that the of hunt for geese and their eggs, and that of the ancestors -- especially their troubles and the consequences of their actions and relationship to the law. Midway through the second story, which bookends the mythical one, that interior storyteller (Elder Brother) states that Younger Brother is beginning to learn a lesson from the telling itself -- patience. Such patience is also required of the viewer, for the pace and structure of both the "today" story and the "mythical" have their an organic unfolding (metaphor: a growing tree) that is quite unlike that of most contemporary Hollywood movies, with their fast call to conflict and continuous conflict.
I was struck by the transition of "today's" story from color to black and white as the mythical story is told, the showing of the mythical tale in color (which helped to separate it from the today story), and the dissolve to color in today time as the mythical telling ends.
Water is the core of the story, as the river, the swamp, and rain are the images that open and close the movie. The tale begins, ends, and begins again.
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