Youth

Keep Talking follows four Alaska Native women fighting to save Kodiak Alutiiq, a critically endangered language with only 41 fluent Elders remaining. At language immersion camp, young Sadie (13) is inspired. Over the course of the film, Sadie evolves from painful shyness into a powerful young woman with a strong connection to her culture. “Sadie’s journey demonstrates the powerful impact language revitalization can have on a young person’s sense of self,” says director Karen Weinberg.

Join us for the 7th Biennial Vision Maker Film Festival
Lincoln, Nebraska - April 20-26, 2018

The Twelve Days of Native Christmas is an animated short film written and directed by Gary Robinson with illustrations by Jesse T. Hummingbird. The whole family will enjoy this whimsical adaptation of the timeless classic yuletide song The Twelve Days of Christmas adapted to a Native American perspective and illustrated by one of America's great Indian artists. Twelve different Native American groups are represented in the lyrics and images of this fanciful animated short film.

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.

A heartwarming story of Stanford Addison: a Native American Elder, Spiritual Leader, Horse Tamer, and Quadriplegic. Through his unique method of gentling wild horses, Stanford delivers an inspiring and timely message of universal peace and cultural tolerance by sharing the experiences of his own life.

Learn how building a traditional Sugpiaq kayak can help maintain and invigorate a language, a culture, and a way of knowing the land and ocean. When Sugpiaq children add their knowledge and energy to the work of elders, scholars, hunters, fishermen, and boat builders in one of the most remote areas of Kodiak Island, the result is a sense of optimism and strength. Traditional knowledge and scientific ways of knowing join forces to create layers of understanding and belonging.

Sandy White Hawk’s story of adoption is not of saving an orphan, but of creating one. At 18-months she was removed from her Sicangu Lakota relatives and taken to live with missionaries, a traumatic experience she later found to be part of a federally-funded assimilative movement that targeted American Indian children.

A stunning coming-of-age journey from the Pine Ridge Reservation, set against a background of rising tension and protest, a Lakota/Northern Cheyenne teenager learns first-hand what it means to lead a new generation and enter adulthood in a world where the odds are stacked against him.

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

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.

Every Monday night in the small community of Shiprock, New Mexico, a group of young Navajo leaders meet to decide how they will help their community. For more than seven years, the Northern Diné Youth Committee has worked to give youth opportunities to directly make changes within their community. But while the NDYC works to make changes, many members also consider their own futures, commitments to family and the world outside of the Shiprock. While they love their community, they all must consider their options both on and off the reservation.

What does it take for a contemporary Native family to thrive on their reservation? Badger Creek is a portrait of Native resilience as seen through a year in the life of three generations of a Blackfeet family living on the reservation in Montana. The loving and sober Momberg family members run a successful ranch, live a traditional worldview and are relearning their language.

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