Older Than America

Topics: Native Americans in the United States, Indigenous peoples of the Americas, United States Pages: 5 (1667 words) Published: November 30, 2014

1. Film Information: The title of film we watched this week is Older than America. The lead actors and actresses are Adam Beach, Tantoo Cardinal, Bradley Cooper Georgina Lightning, Bradley Cooper, and Tantoo Cardinal. movie was released Oct 12, 2010 by the IFC Films studio. The length of the film is about one hundred minutes. The film genre is trying to expose the history with horror atmosphere. The director of the film is Georgina Lightning .

2. Brief summary: A woman's haunting visions reveal a Catholic priest's sinister plot to silence Rain’s mother from speaking the truth about the atrocities that took place at her Native American boarding school. The story along with her daughter, Rain haunted by visions that led to her own mother's forced institutionalization. The film mixes the true story of the US's forced boarding of Native American children, subjecting them to a wide variety of abuses. The film is not that easy to follow up because it started with some suspension and wired dreams at the beginning. As the story goes along, more and more clues reveal. It is hard to believe what the boarding school did to Native American kids based on my perception to boarding school. The film has enough twists and turns to keep my attentions while watching it.

3. Identify the main problem(s) or issue(s) addressed in the film: The problem is mainly addressed in boarding school. They remove children from the influence of their families and culture and assimilate them into the dominant Canadian culture. Father Bartoli paralyzed Rain’s mother in order to hide the truth about atrocities in boarding school. The Native American kids were beaten, whipped, raped and killed in the school. Later on, Father Bartoli also tried to convince Auntie Apple to keep Rain in captivity in order to stop memorizing the truth from the past. Rain was somehow rescued from tying up her hands by a spiritual guy who is her classmate in boarding school. She intellectually escaped from the room when the cleaner opened the door. Rain and Jonny decided to discover the truth in the mysterious cellar. After Father Bartoli knew Rain had escaped, he decided to go to cellar to kill her. Finally, Rain collected all the clues and memorized all the things happened in boarding school. Father Batoli was tangled up with all the lost soul who were abused and died under his hands. He got punished. 4. Main characters review: The main characters are Jonny, Rain, Luke, and Father Batoli. Director and co-writer Lightning also plays Rain, the lead role in Older Than America. Rain lives with her police officer boyfriend Johnny (Adam Beach) in snowy, rural Minnesota. Adom Beach plays her boyfriend. Luke (Bradley Cooper) is a government geologist investigating reports of a recent earthquake on his own time; Steve Klamath (Glen Gould) has returned home to run for mayor on an anti-development platform, opposing the incumbent, developer Paul Gunderson (Chris Mulkey). I think the actors are good in these roles especially Johnny because I can feel his love to Rain. They play believable roles, but I was confused about those spiritual figures. They are not quite believable, though. Those children in the board school make me sympathetic. There is no “Hollywood stereotypes”.

5. Portrayal of authority: Father Bartoli is a typical guy who has authority in religious figures. He is a priest minister who controls all the regulations in boarding school. Auntie Apple (Tantoo Cardinal), who raised Rain, leans heavily upon local Catholic priest Father Bartoli (Steve Yoakum). The two of them shake their heads disapprovingly when Rain and Johnny do not immediately agree to having a Catholic marriage ceremony. The boarding school is a nightmare to Native American children. Priests tried to remove their identity and assimilated them into American culture. I dislike Father Bartoli. He did not only a lot of bad things to the Native American children but also silenced Rain and her mother...
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