In this animated short, a self-important colonial explorer emerges from a sailing ship and plants a flag on the Arctic ice, as a bemused Inuit hunter looks on. Then the explorer plants another, and another, and another, while the hunter, clearly not impressed that his land has been “discovered,” quietly goes about his business.
In this charming and humorous re-imagining of first contact between Inuit and European, Jonathan Wright brings us the story of a savvy hunter and the ill-equipped explorer he outwits.
Animator Alan Pakarnyk uses radiant colour and simple composition in a seemingly random kaleidoscope of motion to depict nature at work. Sweeping the viewer through a whirlwind cycle of the seasons, the film crashes violently from one image to the next. Terra’s images are matched by a surging score from Winnipeg composer Randolph Peters. Without words.
In this six-minute short, Inuit artist, storyteller and co-director Germaine Arnattaujuq (Arnaktauyok) depicts Inuit creation stories in all their glory. Arctic Song tells stories of how the land, sea and sky came to be in beautifully rendered animation. Telling traditional Inuit tales from the Iglulik region of Nunavut through song, the film revitalizes ancient knowledge and shares it with future generations.
This documentary pokes fun at the ways in which Inuit people have been treated as “exotic” documentary subjects by turning the lens onto the strange behaviours of Qallunaat (the Inuit word for white people). The term refers less to skin colour than to a certain state of mind: Qallunaat greet each other with inane salutations, repress natural bodily functions, complain about being cold, and want to dominate the world. Their odd dating habits, unsuccessful attempts at Arctic exploration, overbearing bureaucrats and police, and obsession with owning property are curious indeed.
A collaboration between filmmaker Mark Sandiford and Inuit writer and satirist Zebedee Nungak, Qallunaat! brings the documentary form to an unexpected place in which oppression, history, and comedy collide.
Ages 6 to 9
Study Guide - Guide 1
Diversity - Diversity in Communities
Geography - The Arctic
History and Citizenship Education - European Expansion (1500s-1700s)
Indigenous Studies - History/Politics
Students should consider the historical significance of early contact. What would they do if someone knocked on their door and announced that they were moving into their house? Why is the European man depicted like a house when he is planting flags? Why does the Inuit man use a bear to scare the European? Who are the students rooting for and why? What are cultural differences and why should we respect them?