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The 14th annual Red Nation Film Festival 2017 The Authentic Voice of Native Cinema NATIVES IN CHARGE OF THEIR NARRATIVE revealed the first round of announced films. 46 Films. SPOTLIGHT on twenty-two films directed by women, selected to screen at the 12 day festival November 8th – 19th in Los Angeles CA.

Films from the U.S., Canada, Brazil, Ecuador, Spain, Greenland, Alaska and Australia. Followed with a full line-up of short film program, conversation series, Native FILM Market, Native Women in FILM, Two-Spirit film series, educational programs, Indigenous Women RISE Climate Change March, parties, On the Red is Green Carpet events and The Industry’s Biggest Night for American Indian & Indigenous Voices, RNCI Red Nation Awards a LIVE broadcast airing Red Nation Television Network Native is Here, scheduled November 18th.

Faith Keeper Oren Lyons to receive The Chief Dan George Award. Leonardo DiCaprio to receive the The Brando Award. Dolores Huerta to receive The Edward R Royal Award.

Screenings & Events at Laemmle Monica Film Center, Arclight Hollywood, Santa Monica Pier, and RNCI Red Nation Awards at Fine Arts in Beverly Hills CA.

Red Nation Film Festival Early Bird *VIP Passes Available now for $200 ($290 off full festival pass price)

Get your RNCI Red Nation Awards TICKETS at a discounted rate Available now for $25 ($40 starting November 1st)


Directed by Taylor Sheridan
A veteran tracker with the Fish and Wildlife Service helps to investigate the murder of a young Native American woman, and uses the case as a means of seeking redemption for an earlier act of irresponsibility which ended in tragedy.
Presented by Red Nation TV & The Weinstein Company
Q & A with Cast and Missing & Murdered Native Women Coalition

Directed by Brock Manwill
Ann and Rich have just recently divorced when their teenage son goes missing during a weekend camping trip. The authorities give up the search, convinced, after finding no trace of him that he has run away. Ann holds tight to her faith and becomes convinced that God will reunite her with her son while her husband is hindered by doubt having lost his faith in recent years. Ann convinces Rich to accompany her on what will be their last effort to find him.


Directed by Peter Baxter and Peter Spirer
Spirit Game: Pride of a Nation is the best documentary ever done on a Native sport and stands alone in placing a game within the broader context of the fight for Native rights. The producers pull the strands of the story together, weaving family, community, spirituality, sports and politics in a manner never done before by anyone in any media. The film sets a high standard for addressing the most compelling issues and concerns of the Iroquois while capturing the spirit of the game.
Presented by Red Nation TV, Slamdance and One Bowl Production

Directed by Keri Pickett
One woman’s quest to keep crude oil pipelines out of her Ojibwe communities’ sacred wild rice beds.
Environmentalist Winona LaDuke would like to just spend time with her family, grow corn and put up solar panels. But when a new pipeline route threatens her sacred wild rice and Lake Superior, she springs into action defending clean water with treaties, slow food and spiritual horse rides.*
* Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Ryan Killackey
Yasuni Man is a film about a conflict raging deep within the Ecuadorian Amazon. It’s a real-life Avatar story. Once under siege by missionaries seeking to civilize them, the Waorani people battle industry operatives and their own government in a fight to survive. Join filmmaker Ryan Patrick Killackey and his native friend Otobo as they embark on an expedition into the most bio-diverse forest on Earth. Witness what may be lost as oil companies encroach, human rights violations run rampant, and a forest Eden is destroyed – all for the oil that lies beneath Yasuni.

Directed by Kyle Harris
The story of Standing Rock Sioux Nation and their continued opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Directed by Alexandra Dietz
On the night of her high school graduation she saw a Navy recruitment commercial and joined the next day, despite the fact that she was a lesbian, or Two Spirit, in the era of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” Ten years later, after the deaths of her father and grandmother and her recent discharge from the Navy, Hannah returns to her Native-American community to fulfill her role in the mourning rituals that honor her deceased relatives and to try to find her place again within her culture and family.
* Presented by Red Nation TV & Outfest. Two-Spirit film series (LGBTQ)

Directed by Jaima Chevalier
Veiled Lightning weaves exclusive news coverage, original art, archival footage, and Native American informant interviews into a mosaic that explores how protest movements unfurling across the American landscape have an origin story in the First American Revolution–the Pueblo Revolt of 1680–and how that ancient battle not only informs the fight for social and environmental justice, but also casts a light on ways to thwart oppression, cultural genocide and appropriation to preserve Indigenous culture and help a nation to heal from its own tortured history.
* Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Kenn Little
More Than A Word analyzes the Washington football team and their use of the derogatory term R*dskins. Using interviews from both those in favor of changing the name and those against, More Than A Word presents a deeper analysis of the many issues surrounding the Washington team name. More Than A Word also examines the history of Native American mascots and cultural appropriation.

Directed by Steve Jarvis
Two feisty elders of the Timbisha Tribe struggle with the US Government and their own tribal council to overcome injustice to save their ancient tribal culture in Death Valley, CA. Through legends and stories, Pauline and Maddy Esteves reveal the rich history of their people. They travel to sacred sites, harvest pine nuts and search for early Timbisha basketry. Historians and supporters tell more of Pauline and Maddy’s fight to save their ancient language and basket making art. They confront their enemy, Chairman of the Tribal Council and debate him on their grievances. He is unmoved. Undaunted, they continue to follow their ancestor’s wishes to save their culture before it’s too late

Directed by Yatri Niehaus
The history of the world has been settling on the Greenlandic ice sheet for millions of years. Massive glaciers constantly unearth long gone states of the planet. The Kalaallit people of Greenland have been inseparably connected to the eternal ice for millennia. In just a few short years, colonialism dramatically transitioned their culture to a modern life style. Today, as the foundation of their traditions is literally melting beneath their feet, two photographers seek to imprint on their images a message from a vanishing world. Stella Polaris Ulloriarsuaq“ takes us on a cinematic meditation on the fast changes of our planet, constantly evolving around the Pole Star.

Directed by Melinda Janko
The David vs. Goliath story of a petite Native American woman who sued the United States Government and WON a $3.4 billion settlement for some of the poorest people in America.
* Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Marsh Chamberlain
Long ago survival was not easy for Alaska Native peoples, but we lived full lives. Today survival is easier, but many are dying young.
For centuries Alaska Native peoples survived the harsh conditions of life in the far north while our social, cultural, and spiritual practices thrived. In the 1700’s the battle to claim Alaska and its peoples began, setting into motion disruptive changes for Alaska’s first peoples. The painful scars from colonization continue to cycle from one generation to the next.

Directed by PJ Marcellino
We are inspired by the prescient words of Métis leader Louis Riel, who bestowed this film with its title: ‘My people will sleep for 100 years, but when they awake, it will be the artists that give them their spirit back.’
Witness the awakening. It’s nothing short of a renaissance.
Right now, following on the footsteps of trailblazers like Buffy Sainte-Marie and Robbie Robertson, Indigenous musicians in Canada (and elsewhere) are carving paths into mainstream consciousness, and reclaiming their rightful place as key pieces of the social fabric that composes contemporary society.


Directed by Jenna Cavelle
Mika Jones, a young Native American ribbon dancer, lives a relatively quiet life with her grandmother on the vast Thornfield reservation. While walking alone in a remote forest on the reservation, she’s approached by a white photographer claiming to be lost. After being brutally raped by him, Mika learns that a legislative loophole grants her non-Native assailant immunity from prosecution by tribal courts. Abandoned by the law and dehumanized by her attacker, she goes back into the lion’s den for justice. Inspired by real events.

Directed by Dianna Fuemana
A Teenagers fantasy and a solo mums reality collide, leaving both to grapple a system that doesn’t know how they t in. A Fia ne (translates as ‘in the manner of a woman’) teenager and her solo mum prepare to have fun on a Sunday. A booty call and a beating will bring them closer to understanding their connection to each other outside of a system that doesn’t know how they fit in.

Directed by Sean Stiller
Using the backdrop of traditional Shuswap territory in British Columbia’s interior as both physical and symbolic landscape, Kéwku weaves the tumultuous life experiences of Shuswap elder Ralph Phillips to his relationship with the healing medicine sage.

Directed by Caroline Eleni Papadimos
Welcome To Sápmi is a short documentary about the indigenous people of Scandinavia, the Sami people, and how they have lived through racism and discrimination by Norway. Through the process of Norwegianization, the Sami people have suffered for over 120 years. We discover how a Sami elder, a shaman, and two kindergarten teachers bring their lost culture and identity back to life.
* Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Trevor Carroll
What if the moccasin was on the other foot?
NO RESERVATIONS is political satire inspired by true-life events, giving a hypothetical look at what life would be like if the roles in Standing Rock were reversed. Protests erupt as an upper-middle class Caucasian neighborhood attempts to thwart the construction of a pipeline from an Indigenous Corporation.

Directed by Chris Cowden
Two daughters of a single mother use their imaginations to overcome the hardships of life in Northern Alberta, Canada’s once booming oil sands.

Directed by Joseph Erb
An animated film that talks about the issue of the Standing Rock Sioux Nation and their struggle to survive as they try to protect the water source into their small nation. Narrated by The Standing Rock Chairman.

Directed by Alvaro Ron
In the drought-stricken town of Agua Dulce, in the California High Desert, a ten year old girl challenges her grandfather, a cranky retired firefighter, to follow a crazy plan and bring the water back to the dry river.

Directed by Jerri Thrasher
A sister sets out into the unforgiving land to find her sister, who has been banished from their community for negligence that ended tragically. The banished sister has battled depression since the great loss, causing her to isolate herself from her community. Knowing her sister lacks the skills to survive on her own, the sister attempts to forgive her and bring her home to continue their lives.

Directed by Asia Youngman
Lelum’ (the Hul’qumi’num word for ‘home’) is a short documentary that was inspired by the land – our place of dwelling and our home. The film takes it’s audience on a journey across different landscapes of British Columbia through an Indigenous lens. The strength and beauty of the land is visually portrayed through aerial perspectives, and is complemented with narration from Indigenous youth. It conveys the message: as custodians of the land, it is our inherent responsibility to protect and show respect for our lelum’, our home.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Carr Sappier
APOTAMKIN is a short film inspired by stories heard from the Wolastoqiyik elders in Tobique First Nation where director, Carly Sappier was born and raised. Step inside of this world of song and dance as it is influenced by the sea monster (Apotamkin) who captures those who disrespect the waters.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Joseph Erb
This story is a very old Cherokee story. Long ago, two boys feed a small starving snake. It grows up to be a large Uktena that fights Thunder

Directed by Cheryl Briggs
The Chippewa tribe believes that Asibikaashi, the spider woman, protects children from bad dreams at night by weaving dream catchers to hang above their heads while they sleep. In Dreamweaver, she teaches Namid, a scared eight year old Chippewa girl who suffers from nightmares, to overcome her fears.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Erica Daniels
Trail of the Turtle is a story that follows 2 Indigenous youth on their journey to heal from the effects of intergenerational trauma. With the guidance of international spiritual leader and founder of the Turtle Lodge, Dave Courchene Jr. they enter an ancient Rites of Passage Ceremony. By learning more about their culture and traditions, they hope to reconnect to their original identity as First Nation peoples of this land and to be inspired to become future leaders in their community.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Jack Kohler
During a hand game tournament in Northern California, Danny de Leon interviewed tribal members about the importance of the hand games.

Directed by Dinae Robinson
Canada’s dark and behind the headlines history of the Indian Residential School system has only began to surface within the past decade. Testimonies from former students whose experiences are so dark and bleak, it is hard to believe that a such an inhumane government funded, Church run school could ever exist. What some might forget is that the victims were only children when they attended.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Darlene Naponse
Mary, an Ojibway teenager is taken by a stranger after a day out with her friends. She returns to Mother Earth and the Natural World seeks retribution.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Michael Premo
Water Warriors is the story of a community’s resistance against the oil and natural gas industry. When an energy company began searching for natural gas in New Brunswick, Canada, indigenous and white families united to drive out the company in a campaign to protect their water and way of life.

Directed by Mary Galloway
For Anna, a young Aboriginal nanny, who must choose between running from her abusive father or staying as a devoted nanny family is all about perspective.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Sonya Ballantyne
Sonya Ballantyne is an emerging filmmaker residing in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Originally from the Misipawistik First Nation in North Central Manitoba, Sonya studied psychology at the University of Manitoba and film and theatre at the University of Winnipeg. Nosisim is her first documentary.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Stacy Howard
When a young girl gets suspended from grade school, her mother sends her to stay with her traditional Navajo grandma.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Tamara Bell
We go into Secret Indigenous societies and reveal shocking truths, little know prophecies and new information about the Sasquatch that change everything we thought we knew.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Nancy Beiman
Coyote the Trickster, an ancient shape shifting Native First Nations character, appears in 21st century Toronto and takes a visiting Businessman on a symbolic tour of the darker side of Canada’s relationship with its “Indians” since the 1950s. But can Bob the Businessman learn anything from this experience? An actual 1953 law encouraged Native peoples to go to the cities while demanding that they leave town at night. This, and a story of birds flying into Toronto buildings, inspired noted author Thomas King to write the original story. The animation and design is meant to suggest that of cartoons from the 1950s. This film considers the possibility, or IMpossibility, of dialogue between two cultures that are literally in collision.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Rafael Sylos
Mathias lives isolated in the woods. One day, an Oca (typical brazilian indigenous housing) appears in the surroundings of his house. It belongs to the Kaingang Beni, that is using the land to perform traditional and religious rituals. The mere presence of this new neighbor drives Mathias to bring his most obscure instincts to the surface.

Directed by Daniel Byers
Throughout their history, the A:shiwi people have made a pilgrimage through the Grand Canyon to leave offerings at traditional sites, gather materials for their cultural practices, and visit the place where their ancestors first emerged from the four Underworlds and into the light of day.
Follow the A:shiwi rain priests and medicine men as this sacred migration down the Colorado river is documented on film for the first time – from the pueblo at Halona Idiwana’a to shrines and ancient settlements, through canyon walls carved by the petroglyphs of the ancestors.

Directed by Elizabeth LaPensée
The experimental stop motion animation Hands to the Sky follows the fallout from oil extraction around the Tar Sands and Great Lakes in North America and transforms into healing through an Anishinaabe worldview.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Elizabeth LaPensée
Stories of spacecanoes and dancing forth dimensional space/time travel unravel to “Trade Song” by the Métis Fiddler Quartet in the experimental stop motion Returning.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Robert Eastman
In this story told by Harrison Wolf Child of the Kiani or “Many Chiefs” Nation (One of four bands of the Blackfoot Confederacy) we are reminded of a small victory that took place within the Southern Peigan in the early reservation period. In a sad time for the Blackfoot people it is important to remember these small victories that brought honor back to the people.

Directed by Michael Peterson
Inspired by true events, residential school survivor Jacob Wematim (Julian Black Antelope), struggles to hang onto his family, land and identity as his personal demons threaten to manifest in the form of the Wendigo spirit (Wilma Pelly) and take it all away.

Directed by Steve Thomas
An Unbroken String tells the story of Tasmanian Aboriginal shell stringing, a story of survival and resilience. For the first time, historic necklaces and images, works from the Furneaux Islands and contemporary works from a new wave of Tasmanian Aboriginal shell stringers appear in a new exhibition that celebrates hundreds of generations of tradition. We are guided on this rich journey by a group of senior shell stringers as they pass the practise on to a new generation.

Directed by Justina Neepin
A family travels back to the ‘Bayline’ for a 3 day long camping trip. The ‘Bayline’ was a short term for the Hudson Bay Railway between The Pas and Churchill in Manitoba. George and Maria Neepin take their daughters to the spot where George grew up and give a glimpse into their childhood living along the tracks.
Presented by: Native Women in FILM. Films made by women.

Directed by Colton Willier
A Shirtnami takes over a town, only to be conquered by Skateboarding Pants.


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