Things We Do is a music video by Smoke Signals director Chris Eyre. The group Indigenous is a four-member band from the Nakota nation, made up of three young brothers and one sister who have been playing music together most of their lives. Eyre’s video follows them from the South Dakota badlands to New York City.
Singing Our Stories opens with the oldest-recorded Indian song, sung by Lakota medicine man Brave Buffalo in 1865. The film documents the songs and stories of Native women singers across the United States and Canada, from the Tuscarero of North Carolina to the Blood Nation of western Canada and back to the southeastern Cherokee homelands of singer/songwriter Rita Coolidge. Featured in the film are Ulali, the renowned a cappella trio, who take filmmaker Annie Fraziér Henry home with them to record several generations of women singers. Singing Our Stories preserves age-old and precious moments shared among Native women as the heritage of their culture.
The Gift is a cross-country look at the reverence for corn in tribal culture. Filmmaker Gary Farmer travels from the Iroquois Haudeshonne of the Northeast to the Mayan of Chiapas, Mexico, to learn of the ancient and profound relationship between the people of the land and this sacred food source. Some tribal creation stories say the first human being was born of corn. The Cherokee revere maize as the Corn Mother, Selu. The Mayan traditionally believe they are made of corn. In Mexico, NAFTA threatens the southern Native’s right to raise corn, an issue that is central to the
Zapatista movement. Farmer's film poetically interweaves dance, culture, and corn.
Gary Farmer, Director
Gary Dale Farmer, a Cayuga of the Wolf Clan, Ongwehoniwe, was born in Ontario on the Six Nations Reserve. In addition to directing, he has experience in film, television, theatre, and radio. He is currently starring in the film Smoke Signals and in the television pilot Justice. He is also the publisher of Aboriginal Voices magazine. In 1997 he was invited to show The Gift, his first film with the National Film Board, as a work in progress at Sundance.
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