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Trailer for documentary "Fractured Land" sparks discussion

Keiko Honda.  Photo courtesy of Andrew Annuar Photography

A few weeks ago at Sam Sullivan’s Public Salon, I met Keiko Honda.  She  runs an artist in residence group meeting once a month, using it as a platform to highlight important social issues through arts and culture.

Recently,  Honda generously opened her house to showcase the film trailer for "Fractured Land" and led an open discussion with the filmmaker Damien Gillis and executive producer Daniel Conrad.

Around 7:30 p.m., after everyone settled into the comfy living room, Keiko acknowledged the Vancouver Foundation Neighborhood Small Grans (NSG) that help support the "Artists-in-Residence: A talk about passion and creativity" series and the honoured guests, and a First Nations elder opened the event with a prayer. Then the trailer was shown.

It only lasted a few minutes, but the images conjured powerful emotions from the audience in attendance. This film is a collaboration between Damien Gillis, Fiona Rayher and Daniel Conrad. Damien opened the discussion by sharing how his families were European settlers who didn't live too far from where Caleb’s family lives, and their grandparents were best friends. 

Over time, he has come to see Caleb like a brother, and really commends Caleb for learning the traditional ways from his grandparents. Yet having the courage to go to New Zealand to learn law, so he may represent his people. His people are fighting for their land and the right to continue their way of life, which is very much dependent on the land.

Daniel Conrad was the cinematographer of the award winning documentary “The Corporation”, a man whose brilliant intellect and humour was charming in person. For Daniel, the movie dissects all the major issues in our society right now. Everything from climate change, the dissolving of traditional knowledge and lifestyle, resource distribution, to power struggles between big corporation and local residents.

He joked that this documentary is very expensive to make, since they have to go up to Northern BC to film. The three member production team that has already dedicated two and a half years towards it. They are encouraged by promising discussions with major television networks and are looking for a potential global distributor. Daniel hopes that more financial support will come their way to help them finish this important film. You can lend your support by donating to their website. 

Synopsis of Fractured Land

What would it be like to live alongside one of the shapers of human events, in their youth, before they transformed history? In Fractured Land, we follow Caleb Behn, a young Dene warrior who has to potential to become one of this generation’s leaders – if he can discover how to overcome fractures within himself, his community, and the world around him.

Like many emerging leaders, Caleb’s passion comes with a conflict of opposites. He is gentle, soft-spoken, yet adept with deadly weapons. He sports a Mohawk and tattoos, hunts moose, and wears a business suit. His father is a vehement environmentalist and residential school survivor. His mother is a top executive for the oil and gas industry. His people are deeply divided. They are at the epicenter of some of the most destructive fracking operations on earth. How does Caleb balance their need for jobs with his sacred duty to defend their territory? He has arrived at a key moment in history, sees the contradictions, and wants to reconcile them. The viewer is struck by his intelligence, charisma, and sense of fate.

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