American Indian Cultural House Film Series


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"Black Indians: An American Story"

"Black Indians: An American Story" brings to light a forgotten part of Americans past - the cultural and racial fusion of Native and African Americans. Narrated by James Earl Jones, "Black Indians: An American Story" explores what brought the two groups together, what drove them apart and the challenges they face today.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Where: Rapson Hall Auditorium
89 Church Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

5:30 p.m. Doors open
6:00 p.m. Film begins

The first film series event is hosted by the participants of the American Indian Cultural House and the Huntley House Living Learning Communities.
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"Foster Child"

In this documentary, filmmaker Gil Cardinal searches for his biological family to try and understand how he ended up in foster care as an infant. In his search, Cardinal encounters frustration and loss, but eventually finds answers and a new appreciation of his M├ętis culture.

Attention: Location Change

Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Where: 102 Fraser Hall
106 Pleasant Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

5:30 p.m. Doors open
6:00 p.m. Film begins
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"Up Heartbreak Hill"

The hopes and heartbreaks of senior year of high school comprise a defining part of teenage life and lore in America. Graduation marks the end of childhood, partings from family, friends and community and the start of a future that is both exciting and scary. But for Thomas Martinez, a statewide high school cross-country and track star, and Tamara Hardy, an academic as well as athletic star, growing up on the Navajo reservation in New Mexico has heightened these tensions in ways particular to Native American history and contemporary reservation life. Erica Scharf's new documentary,Up Heartbreak Hill, is a chronicle of one fateful year in the lives of two talented kids who must figure out not only how to become young adults, but what it means to be both Native and modern.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Where: Rapson Hall Auditorium
89 Church Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

5:30 p.m. Doors open
6:00 p.m. Film begins
Sponsored by The University of Minnesota's Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Circle of Indigenous Nations, the Department of American Indian Studies, Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, and University Libraries

Free and Open to the Public!

The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. To request disability accommodations, please contact Jillian Rowan at 612-624-0564.

For more information please contact:
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The Circle of Indigenous Nations
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inwhosehonor.jpg "In Whose Honor"

"In Whose Honor?" takes a critical look at the long-running practice of "honoring" Native American Indians by using them as mascots and nicknames in sports. In this moving and award-winning documentary, Native Americans speak out about the hurtful and harmful effects of stereotyped sports images on both Natives and non-Natives alike.
-Jay Rosenstein Productions website

Screened on February 16th, 2012

shadowcatcher_edwardscurtis.jpg"Edward S. Curtis: Coming to the Light"

Edward Sheriff Curtis, or the "Shadow Catcher" as he was later called by some of the tribes, took over 40,000 images and recorded rare ethnographic information from over eighty American Indian tribal groups, ranging from the Eskimo or Inuit people of the far north to the Hopi people of the Southwest. This film explores the history of Curtis' accumulated works.
-George Horse Capture, American Masters, PBS website

Screened on March 20th, 2012

"Reel Injun: On the Trail of the Hollywood Indian"

"Reel Injun is an entertaining and insightful look at the Hollywood Indian, exploring the portrayal of North American Natives through a century of cinema. Travelling through the heartland of America and into the Canadian North, Cree filmmaker Neil Diamond looks at how the myth of "the Injun" has influenced the world's understanding - and misunderstanding - of Natives."
-The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television

Screened on April 19th, 2012

Sponsored by The University of Minnesota's Office of Undergraduate Admissions, the American Indian Student Cultural Center, The Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, University Libraries, and The Office for Equity and Diversity
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"We Shall Remain: Geronimo"

We Shall Remain is a groundbreaking mini-series and provocative multi-media project that establishes Native history as an essential part of American history. It include five 90-minute documentaries spanning three hundred years tell the story of pivotal moments in U.S. history from the Native American perspective. Episode 4 focuses on the life and politics of Apache warrior Geronimo.

Screened on February 16, 2011
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"Sitting Bull a Stone in my Heart"

An 83-minute documentary film on the great American Indian Lakota chief, spiritual leader and warrior as he has never been seen before on the screen.

Screened on March 9, 2011

"Way of the Warrior"

Exploring the warrior ethic among Native Americans, this documentary also reveals how Native communities have traditionally viewed their warriors and why, during the 20th century, Native men and women have signed up for military service at a rate three times higher than non-Indians.

Screened on April 13, 2011
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"Redskins, Tricksters and Puppy Stew"

Screened on March 24, 2010

Take an in-depth laugh-a-minute tour of complex issues like Native identity, politics and racism, wrap them neatly inside one-liners, guffaws and comedic performances, and you have Redskins, Tricksters and Puppy Stew. This film hilariously overturns the conventional notion of the stoic Indian and shines a light on an overlooked element of Native culture - humour and its healing powers.

Meet an engaging cast of characters including Don Kelly, one of Canada's hottest young stand-up comics, whose Indian name means Runs Like a Girl. He uses comedy to skewer stereotypes of the apathetic Indian. Sharon Shorty and Jackie Bear from Whitehorse, Yukon, portray Sarah and Susie, two elderly Native ladies discussing their daily activities and their love of Bingo and Kentucky Fried Chicken. And while they've been making people laugh across the country with their portrayal of two quirky elders, they also play a role as community healers.

"Qallunaat: Why White People are Funny"

Screened on April 21, 2010

What's so funny about white people, otherwise known as Qallunaat to the Inuit? Well, among other curious behaviours, Qallunaat ritualistically greet each other with inane salutations, repress natural bodily functions, complain a lot about being cold and seem to want to dominate the world.

This docucomedy is a collaboration between filmmaker Mark Sandiford and Inuit writer and satirist Zebedee Nungak. Zebedee is CEO and head researcher of the mythical Qallunaat Studies Institute (QSI). According to Nungak, "Qallunaat ought to be the object of some kind of study by other cultures. The more I thought about the way they have studied us over the years it occurred to me, why don't we study them?"

In its use of archival clips, Why White People Are Funny pokes as much fun at the illustrious history of NFB documentaries as it does at society in the south. Of course, well before the NFB came into existence, and at least as early as the classic 1922 feature "Nanook of the North," white society has been fascinated with native subjects, studying them as exotic specimens, documenting their cultural and social behaviours. That tendency to frame a world of Eskimo "others" dominated both film Why White People Are Funny brings the documentary form to an unexpected place. Those who were holding the mirror up to Inuit culture finally have it turned back on themselves. The result is not always pretty, but it sure is amusing. From the Inuit point of view, visitors from the south are nothing less than "accidents waiting to happen."

Why White People Are Funny is a humbling portrait of what it must feel like to be the object of the white man's gaze. Fresh and orginal, this documentary has that rare ability to educate with wit.