Cinema and Representation
This theme focuses on the ways in which Aboriginal peoples have been represented in NFB documentaries. Film excerpts illustrate how the representation of Aboriginal peoples has evolved over the last fifty years.
César's Bark Canoe/César et son Canot d'écorce
1971, Director: Gosselin, Bernard
excerpt 1 1 min 14 s
1. The transmission of knowledge and skills from one generation to the next is vital to the preservation of a people’s culture; what knowledge and skills are being preserved through the making of this film?
2. What images and motifs are used in the decoration of the canoe? What is the significance of these images and motifs?
Building a canoe solely from the materials that the forest provides may become a lost art, even among the Indians whose traditional craft it is. In this film, César Newashish, a sixty-seven-year-old Attikamek Indian of the Manowan Reserve north of Montreal, builds a canoe in the old way, using only birch bark, cedar splints, spruce roots and gum. With a sure hand he works methodically to fashion a craft unsurpassed in function or beauty of design. The film is without commentary but text frames appear on the screen in Cree, French and English. Film without words.
Director: Bernard Gosselin
Photography: Bernard Gosselin
Producer: Paul Larose
Sound: Serge Beauchemin
Editing: Monique Fortier
Music: Maurice Blackburn
Sound: Roger Lamoureux