On this episode we begin our two part discussion of contemporary Indigenous young adult films (and television). We focus on three of the newest entries in the genre, Beans, Trickster, and Monkey Beach. We also discuss our position as settler viewers and why this genre is flourishing. Listen to Part 2 of our discussion on Indigenous YA here.
This episode features Editor-in-Chief Alex Heeney, Associate Editor Brett Pardy, and special guest Lindsay Pugh
Beans (Tracey Deer, 2020)
In Tracey Deer’s feature film debut, 12 year old Beans (Kiawentiio) navigates her identity during the summer of the 1990 Oka Crisis. The Oka Crisis occurred when the Mohawk community barricaded access to their land to prevent the development of a golf course. Quebec deployed the provincial police in a standoff which lasted 78 days.
Trickster (Michelle Latimer, 2020)
CBC’s miniseries Trickster, based on a series of novels by Eden Robinson, follows Jared (Joel Oulette) a teenage boy who lives in Kitamaat with his wild but protective mom (Crystle Lightning). He learns he’s the son of a trickster, Wade (Kalani Queypo), which draws him into intra-dimensional conflict.
Trickster is streaming in Canada on CBC Gem
Monkey Beach (Loretta Todd, 2020)
Based on Eden Robinson’s novel, Monkey Beach focuses on Lisamarie (Grace Dove) who returns home to Kitamaat, BC after several years away in BC. At home, Lisamarie learns to make sense of the supernatural visions she has avoided for years.
- Watch Alanis Obomsawin’s documentaries about the Oka Crisis, Kanehsatake 270 Years of Resistance and Rocks at Whiskey Trench at the National Film Board (of Canada)’s website
- Read Alex’s review of Beans
- Visit Lindsay’s website Woman in Revolt
- Purchase our 2019 Canadian Cinema Yearbook, which includes a section on Indigenous cinema
- Tune in next week for Part 2 of our discussion