The NFB’s 72nd Oscar®-nominated film.
In 1909, a dapper young remittance man is sent from England to Alberta to attempt ranching. However, his affection for badminton, bird watching and liquor leaves him little time for wrangling cattle. It soon becomes clear that nothing in his refined upbringing has prepared him for the harsh conditions of the New World. This animated short is about the beauty of the prairie, the pang of being homesick and the folly of living dangerously out of context.
Ages 14 to 16
Study Guide - Guide 1
Geography - Territory: Regional
History - Early Colonization/Settlement
As a class, brainstorm all the reasons why the young Englishman decided to go to Canada in 1909. Identify the ways in which he was unprepared for this new lifestyle. What could he have done to better his chances of survival during his first winter? Comment on the comet analogy that runs through the film. Research the life of a Canadian rancher at the turn of the last century. Extension: Compare ranching as it exists today in the Prairies to the early settlement days.