Young Indian man Thomas is a nerd in his reservation, wearing oversize glasses and telling everyone stories no-one wants to hear. His parents died in a fire in 1976, and Thomas was saved by... See full summary »
Depicts the struggles of reservation-dwelling Native Americans in the North Central United States. The main character is an introspective and lovable person in a process of seeking pride ... See full summary »
A feature documentary film set in Hollywood, examining a radical experiment in '70s utopian living. The Source Family were the darlings of the Sunset Strip until their communal living, ... See full summary »
A documentary about the evolution of the depiction of First Nations people in film, from the silent era to today. Featuring clips from hundreds of films, candid interviews with famous Native and non-Native directors, writers and actors, Reel Injun traces how the image of First Nations people in cinema have influenced the understanding and misunderstanding of their culture and history.Written by
In a montage showing Caucasian actors portraying Native Americans, Daniel Day-Lewis is shown in "The Last of the Mohicans." Day-Lewis's character, Nathaniel Poe, a/k/a/ "Hawkeye," is actually a white man adopted into Native American culture. See more »
We're creative natives. And we're... and we're like the Energizer Bunny. The mightiest nation in the world tried to exterminate us, anglicise us, Christianize us, Americanize us, but we just keep going and going. And I think that Energizer Bunny must be Indian. He's got that little water drum he plays. And I always say, "Next time you have a powwow, have the... the Energizer Bunny lead the grand entry, and after a few rounds then we can get together and EAT him", because we never waste anything.
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A Provocative History of Hollywood's Portrayal of Native Americans
Reel Injun is a compelling and insightful film about the history of Hollywood's stereotyping of Native Americans. While it may be trying to cover too much in presenting the entire history of Native Americans in film from the silent era to the present (and thus skips over much in its broad sweep), it is nevertheless highly informative and provocative. I suspect that even the most of the film junkies here at SXSW Film Festival in Austin, TX learned quite a bit about a topic that has rarely been treated systematically. The use of small stories about the characters and humorous antidotes is excellent. In exploring the film portrayals of Native Americans Reel Injun also reflects on how the broader culture and the Native peoples have come to view themselves. Even our portrayal of all the specific tribes as the stereotypical feather-laden plains "Injun" was a form of cultural warfare. The evolution of their image in more recent films reflects the gradual changes that have occurred in our culture as it has become increasingly multicultural and open-minded. This film could certainly be used as a powerful educational tool to educate students about how we have historically not only committed genocide against Native Peoples, but used film to portray the victims of American colonial expansion as the violent aggressors.
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