Monday, February 15, 2010

Ten Canoes

Last night we watched "Ten Canoes"  by directed by Rolf de Heer and Peter Djigirr.  Released in 2006, this was the first movie to be filmed in an Australian Aboriginal language.  It follows the tradition of Aboriginal oral history, and a storyteller leads the audience through a tale that includes love, loyalty, duty, history, customs and laws.
The story is not told in the traditional narrative form that we are familiar with, and the never-seen storyteller jokes about this at the beginning and the end of the film. The format is not linear, and several stories are interpolated.  However, the same cast is used for the multiple stories. Confusion is avoided through switches between black &  white and color differentiate the different stories lines.
The story is not action packed, and many may find it a bit slow.  However, the scenery from Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory is magnificent. Also, humor is included, though I question if it is authentic to the Aboriginal culture, or included to keep the audience engaged.  I am not sure that I would recommend the film based on the story line, but the presentation and some of the content make viewing this movie worth your time.

1 comment:

  1. I saw this as part of the London Film Fest when it first came out and loved it!