MUSEUM OF MODERN ART DOCUMENTARY FORTNIGHT
"Makes a bold case for the Ojibway people to be their own storytellers—while seeking a cure for the damage inflicted by colonization—in a spiritual reconnection with tradition."
"The tattered history of the Ojibway people of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is redeemed through the punk-rock humor of a pair of young native filmmakers.” – The Wall St. Journal
"Unleashes a full audiovisual arsenal against the traumatic circularity of history. Dynamic, hilarious, angry, and sensorially overwhelming, but never passive." – The Brooklyn Rail
"INAATE/SE is an inimitable model for what radical documentary in the 21st century might be.” – Screen Slate
The Seven Fires Prophecy is an ancient Ojibwe story said to have foretold the arrival of Europeans in North America, and the devastating consequences on their community. Each of the fires prefigures a particular era of time, and warns or prepares the people for its defining challenges. INAATE/SE/ re-imagines this prophecy and explores how it resonates across the generations in the indigenous Anishinaabe-Ojibwe community of Sault Ste. Marie, in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
The fourth fire envisioned a possible coming together of two mighty nations, but warned the people that the face of brotherhood and the face of death look very much alike. In visiting Sault Ste. Marie's monolithic "Tower of History", a museum that primarily honors Jesuit missionaries, settlers, and local industrialists, and treats the natives as vanquished adversaries, it is apparent which path "history" took.
Listening to Basil Johnson speak on the secularization of sweat lodges, interviewing a young man on his battles with alcoholism, and visiting old "Wild Bill" as he dances to Roy Orbison and fires a rifle out of the window in between swigs from the liquor bottle -- recalls the sixth fire, which predicted that the teachings would be taken away from the children, and the people would lose their reason for living.
Some, however, believe the current generation to be emerging as the seventh fire generation. The seventh fire envisioned a re-tracing of steps, a return to roots, and a spiritual rebirth of a people. As INAATE/SE/ fixes its lens between the sacred and the profane to pry open the construction of contemporary indigenous identity, it simultaneously explores and re-imagines the past and the future of the Ojibwe people.
INAATE/SE/ [it shines a certain way. to a certain place./it flies. falls.]
Directed by Adam Khalil and Zack Khalil
Film Info -- 2016, 75 minutes, in English.
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