Montreal film screening aims to emphasize Indigenous politics, perspectives

Many believe Indigenous cinema is experiencing resurgence, and bringing those works to more people is one of the inspirations behind film screening taking place at Concordia University Monday night.

Pay-what-you-can screening at Concordia Monday evening is open to the public

Inuk artist Asinnajaq looks at the cinematic representation of Inuit with Three Thousand, a film which uses NFB archival footage. (Three Thousand/NFB)

Many believe Indigenous cinema is experiencing resurgence, and bringing those works to more people is one of the inspirations behind film screening taking place at Concordia University Monday night.

Half a dozen short films from Indigenous communities around North America are being screened at the event, organized by Cinema Politica Concordia, the political film network, and the Indigenous-led initiative First Voices Week.

The films cross multiple genres — some are documentaries, others are fiction, and there's a mix of live action and animation.

The co-founder of Cinema Politica, Ezra Winton, said the selection of films being shown "emphasize Indigenous politics and perspectives."

"Since part of decolonization includes the re-centering of Indigenous lives, histories, perspectives and stories, we see the act of programming Indigenous works to a wide public audience for free as contributing to larger efforts, especially Indigenous-led efforts, to decolonize," Winton said.

A variety of stories

Montreal-based Inuk artist Asinnajaq's Three Thousand is one of the films being shown — it mixes animation with National Film Board of Canada archival footage, shot between 1920 and 2013.

She said the short film took about three years to make and it's "an offering" to the audience.

"It is up to the viewers to find what they may," she said. "For me, it is my happy place."

Other films being shown include Under the Husk, the journey of two Mohawk girls as they become women, and Dislocation Blues, about leaving the site of the Standing Rock protest against the Dakota Access Pipeline.

The screenings are pay-what-you-can, open to the public and wheelchair accessible. The event starts at 7 p.m. in room H110 at Concordia's Hall Building, 1455 de Maisonneuve Boulevard West.