Sports

Facing scorching temperatures, 19-year-old Andy Payne, a small-town Cherokee boy, takes home the gold after winning a grueling 3,422-mile foot race designed to bring attention to the newly constructed Route 66 Highway. The race recounted in this Emmy-nominated film became one of the wildest promotion schemes in history, allowing Andy to win enough money to marry his girl and keep the family farm.

Q. Why is it important to have films created, written, and produced by Natives in today’s media?

A. Indian Country is home to compelling and important stories just waiting to be told and voices which need to be heard. Who better to tell these stories than Natives filmmakers? As a fan of documentary film, I want to hear what Native filmmaker’s have to say, I want to hear new voices. The documentary landscape should always evolve and expand, and diversity is the key to all of this.

Spanning his 50-year dogsled racing career, ATTLA explores the life and persona of George Attla, from his childhood as a tuburculosis survivor in the remote Alaskan interior, through his rise as 10-time world champion and mythical state hero, and finally as a village elder resolutely training his grandnephew to race his dog team one last time.

The history of lacrosse in North America is a rich and multi-layered one. Much more than a Native American ball and stick game, lacrosse is a cultural window into Native American communities and their historical relationship with each other and the dominant culture.

For Navajo and Hopi Tribes, running is more than a sport. The film moves beyond stereotypes of the past and present as two high school boys' cross country teams--Tuba City and Chinle--compete for the state championship title.

For thousands of years, traditional Inuit sports have been vital for survival within the unforgiving Arctic. Acrobatic and explosive, these ancestral games evolved to strengthen mind, body and spirit within the community. Following four modern Inuit athletes reveals their unique relationship to the games as they compete across the North. As unprecedented change sweeps across their traditional lands, their stories illuminate the importance of the games today.

The history of lacrosse in North America is a rich and multi-layered one. Much more than a Native American ball and stick game, lacrosse is a cultural window into Native American communities and their historical relationship with each other and the dominant culture.

Two brothers from the Onondaga Nation pursue their dreams of playing lacrosse for Syracuse University. With the dream nearly in reach, the boys are caught in a constant struggle to define their Native identity, live-up to their family's expectations and balance challenges on and off the Reservation.

Follow-up series now available
The Medicine Game: Four Brothers, One Dream

Host and Global Explorer Chris Bashinelli, travels the world to experience life outside of his hometown- Brooklyn, New York. In this program, he visits the Pine Ridge Reservation to explore the often forgotten culture of the Oglala Lakota Native Americans. While there he embarks on a life-changing buffalo harvest, gets schooled by a women’s basketball team, visits with a 14-year-old suicide prevention activist, and finds himself shoulder-deep up a cow’s backside while trying to better understand employment on the Reservation.

 
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