Atanarjuat The Fast Runner

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Inuit epic set in ancient Igloolik, Atanarjuat The Fast Runner is a life-threatening struggle of love, jealousy, murder and revenge between powerful natural and supernatural characters, Canada's first feature film written, produced, directed, and acted by Inuit. 2001 Camera d'or, Cannes Film Festival; Best Picture, 2002 Genie Awards; #1 Canadian Film of the Decade, Macleans, CTV.

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Inuit epic set in ancient Igloolik, Atanarjuat The Fast Runner is a life-threatening struggle of love, jealousy, murder and revenge between powerful natural and supernatural characters, Canada's first feature film written, produced, directed, and acted by Inuit. 2001 Camera d'or, Cannes Film Festival; Best Picture, 2002 Genie Awards; #1 Canadian Film of the Decade, Macleans, CTV.

A film by Zacharias Kunuk, Paul Apak, Norman Cohn and Pauloosie Qulitalik

PRODUCTION INFORMATION

Year of Production: 2001
Duration:
172 minutes
Genre:
Drama based on historical legend
Production Company:
Igloolik Isuma Productions
Language:
Inuktitut with English, French s-t

Country: Canada
Region:
Igloolik; Nunavut, Canadian Arctic

Director: Zacharias Kunuk

Producers:
Zacharias Kunuk, Paul Apak Angilirq, Norman Cohn, Germaine YG Wong

Writer:
Paul Apak Angilirq

Director of Photography:
Norman Cohn

Sound Recordist:
Richard Lavoie

Editor(s):
Zacharias Kunuk, Norman Cohn, Marie-Christine Sarda

Original Music:
Chris Crilly

Costumes:
Michelline Ammaq, Atuat Akkitiq

Principal Cast:
Natar Ungalaaq, Sylvia Ivalu, Peter-Henry Arnatsiaq, Lucy Tulugarjuk, Madeline Ivalu, Paulossie Qulitalik, Eugene Ipkarnak

Executive Producer:
Sally Bochner

 

REVIEWS

“A masterpiece.... The first national cinema of the 21st century”

A.O. Scott, NY Times

“Mysterious, bawdy, emotionally intense, and replete with virtuoso throat singing, this three-hour movie is engrossing from first image to last, so devoid of stereotype and cosmic in its vision it could suggest the rebirth of cinema.”

Jim Hoberman, Village Voice

“Nothing less than a complete revelation and reinvention of cinematic form…. a definite ‘must-see’.”

Katherine Monk, Vancouver Sun

"An astonishing epic film"

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

“Un film d'une singulière beauté”

Jean-Michel Frodon, Le Monde

“A milestone...a fascinating cultural document”

Liam Lacey, The Globe and Mail


SCREENINGS & TELEVISION:

Official Selection - Un Certain Regard -Winner Camera d'or (54th Cannes International Film Festival, May 2001)

Complete listings at the Atanarjuat companion Website

 

RELATED LINKS

Press Kit / / Film Stills
Companion website
Lesson Plans on Sila Inuit Educational
Atanarjuat on IMDB
Atanarjuat on Rotten Tomatoes
Atanarjuat on Metacritic
Atanarjuat on Amazon

View our catalogue to order Atanarjuat Products

 

DISTRIBUTOR INFORMATION

Isuma Distribution International c/o VTape, wandav@vtape.org, +1.416.351.1317 fax-1509; info@isuma.ca, +1.514.486.0707 fax-9851.

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Portrait de Anonymous

Best Canadian film ever made - beautifully shot, compelling writing, and with great performances.  Bravo!

Portrait de Anonymous

fast forward doesn't work

Portrait de Anonymous

 totally garbege dont waste time to watch it, make me puke, phycically made me sick. cant say it is a good film just because it is covering under the cage of first nation history. film is film, and this one can hardly discribed as video.

Portrait de Anonymous

 preach good sir! preach!

Portrait de Anonymous

wanker

Portrait de Anonymous

 I love this film for the reasons others have commented and for myself the time travel aspect. This could have been 500 years ago or 5000 years ago. I bought the DVD and watch it once a year or so. It is pointless making comparison to other film styles this is an oral tradition re- enacted, a deep cultural story being told. This is will either be what you want or not.

Portrait de Anonymous

 I love this film for the reasons others have commented and for myself the time travel aspect. This could have been 500 years ago or 5000 years ago. I bought the DVD and watch it once a year or so. It is pointless making comparison to other film styles this is an oral tradition re- enacted, a deep cultural story being told. This is will either be what you want or not.

Portrait de Anonymous
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Portrait de Anonymous

 One of my all time favorotie films, hope to share with my niece and nephews. 

Portrait de Anonymous

 One of my all time favorotie films, hope to share with my niece and nephews. 

Portrait de Anonymous

 Gorgeous film, and the story was beautiful as well.  I am glad that I stumbled upon this movie after watching "Reel Injun."   

Portrait de Anonymous

one of my favorite films ever.  so well done.  I am grateful for "Reel Injun" another fabulous movie for leading me here.  I was captivated from the moment it started and took my time watching it.  I know it will be with me forever...THANK YOU!

Portrait de Anonymous

Wonderful, memorable, beautiful, ...

Portrait de Anonymous

Thank you so much for allowing people to stream this fantastic film. I have wanted to see this film for years, but as a Canadian ex-pat living in Germany, it has been impossible for me to find a DVD (with correct region) or anywhere else to view it. Wonderful film! Watched it with my Austrian "significant other" who also said that this film is a gem. Thanks again.

Portrait de Mark A. Dutton

Thank you for sharing this information.It was informative a s usual. Actually I looked up it on <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org">wikipedia</a>

Portrait de Anonymous

great post

Portrait de Anonymous

 Quel chef d'oeuvre! De toute beauté. Ce film devrait être être visionné obligatoirement par tous les enfants du secondaire car il fait dorénavant partie de l'ADN culturel de tous les canadiens, des québécois et des nord-américains. Merci d'avoir offert ce cadeau à tous le cinéphiles du monde et longue vie à la culture et au peuple inuit. Bravo! 

Portrait de Norman Cohn

From IsumaTV to all viewers: Thank you for your comments. We apologize for the Synch problem mentioned in some comments below. This synch problem now is CORRECTED. The film now plays in synch all the way through in all versions. Very sorry for the inconvenience, hope you enjoy the film.

Portrait de Anonymous

 Beautiul and captivating. I love feeling my mind open and take in all of what is so far away from what I know as living. A true appreciation for all of human kind. No matter where we live, we feel all the same emotions as human beings.

Portrait de Anonymous
Truly an amazing movie besides the poor quality of video streaming.
Portrait de Anonymous
Truly an amazing movie besides the poor quality of video streaming.
Portrait de Anonymous

sadly this was unwatchable because the audio had about 2 seconds dely to the video

Portrait de Anonymous

 Play it in two windows. One with the sound off and sync it with the sound from the other.

Portrait de Cara Di Staulo

Sorry you had difficulty viewing this film. If you do not have access to High Speed Internet, try selecting the low resolution streaming option by clicking on “Switch to low-speed” button in the lower right portion of the screen.

Portrait de Anonymous

 It's also lagging in the low-res version. It happens somewhere halfway through the movie though; the first half was fine for me. Refreshing and reloading the movie didn't seem to help. Technical issues aside, terrific movie, thanks for sharing it online!

Portrait de Anonymous

 Yes, for me too this was the case.. was fine until about halfway, now I can't finish the movie -- which is such a shame 'cause it's amazing and I'd really like to! Would love to know how it ends someday...

Portrait de Anonymous

 Yes, for me too this was the case.. was fine until about halfway, now I can't finish the movie -- which is such a shame 'cause it's amazing and I'd really like to! Would love to know how it ends someday...

Portrait de Cara Di Staulo

 Thank you. We will look into this!

Portrait de Anonymous

 lol

Portrait de Anonymous

i first watched this wonderful film in 2003 (i think?) in a small theatre in Oregon. i was so absolutely captivated, i went back the next night and watched it again! it has remained with me ever since, close to my heart, at the top of my list of favorite films. (and re-watched several times.) it has every bit of action and intrigue that any good story should have, with achingly beautiful cinematography and this glimpse into another culture and another time that is magical and soulful and feels truthful. imagine my joy to find that it is only the first of a trilogy and that all three are offered here (for free!) to the world. many many thanks for this wonderful gift! blessings.

Portrait de Anonymous

 I first watched this on T.V. a number of years ago and I have been haunted by it ever since. Many thanks to the uploader!

To the critics who have described it as anything but superb,I would like to point out that the long 'ploddingly edited' sections of the movie are wonderful and allow the viewer some small appreciation of the vast isolated landscape in which this film was shot. I struggle to imagine as to what low levels of  concentration they operating on. 

Finally, as other posts have pointed out, Hollywood could learn from this magnificent example of how a fim can be made.

Jim.

Portrait de Anonymous

 Beautiful film

Wish the second half of it was in sync though

Portrait de Anonymous

Great film that really gives insight into the culture and lifestyle of the people. More people should watch this to gain an understanding of these people not only to appreciate what they do but also to appreciate how they use the land and do not abuse it. This is a really excellent film and the acting is not horrible just not hollywood.

Portrait de Anonymous

People should start watching these movies so they will know how Inuit would live up North.. <3  btw this movie is awesome :P

 

Portrait de Anonymous

Amazing and touching movie !! greetings from spain!

Portrait de Anonymous

Hello, Mr. or Ms. udu drum player. Surely your real name isn't anonymous. I take mouse to computer not in defense of the instrumentation I used for Atarnarjuat, but rather to straighten out a couple of errors in your eloquent and otherwise thought-provoking and indeed ultimately kind critique of what you refer to as the 'soundtrack' by which I presume you mean the 'music.'

As to the 'udu drums": no such instrument was used in the score. Indeed, although I am a professional percussionist myself and was raised partially in West Africa I don't actually play the udu.  The didgeridoo loops I used were played by an American musician who makes his own instruments in Colorado.  I do believe he has visited Australia, but the instruments and music are technically...well, non-Australian.  The Tuvan throat singers were from a CD licensed by the producers long before I came on strength, so I can't claim credit or blame for them.  The Shakuhachi, Udu and Tablas were nothing more exotic than samples from my Kurzweil sample library. 

Your comment that 'luckily' the diegetic music was correct is itself both correct and incorrect.  The music performed correctly in the film is played and sung by practitioners of these crafts, so 'luck' had no part to play in it.  Here, though, is my principal response to your critque:  you are clearly correct in identifying the cultural implications of my choices of 'sound' for the score, but only if these choices are taken lterally.  Celtic music is often played on non Celtic instruments. Is that to say that Donal Lunny of the Bothy Band is to be upbraided for asking a Greek instrument to play Irish music?  Were tablas, udus and shakuhachi flutes put on earth for the playing solely of Indian, Nigerian or Japanese music?  Of course not.  If we allow ourselves to remain in cultural lock-step with the literal-minded interpreters of music or indeed of any sound at all, are we not putting useless limits on our imaginations and creativity?  I have to thank you sincerely, however, for the one accusation you did not level at me: that of composing a very Celtic sounding viola theme for the reuniting of Atuat and Atanarjuat towards the end of the film.  Thereby hangs a tale.  If you write to me off-list (ccrilly [at] gmail [dot] com) I would be happy to relate it to you.  Simply put, I faced the challenge of scoring a complex film while avoiding the pitfalls of possible cultural misappropriation if I were to attempt to 'orchesrate' purely Inuit sounds/instruments.  I resolved therefore to avoid any semblance of composing Inuit music and stuck to as abstract, not to mention deliberately pan (if not non) cultural music or sound as I could manage.  Once we permit ourselves to listen critically to sound (musical or otherwise) we find a way to allow these sounds to metamorphose across cultural or other literal lines.  They cease to be syntactically stuck in one meaning or another and are available (as are we) to a more flexible, perhaps purer, sound.  See you in the movies.  Chris Crilly, Havelock QC.

Portrait de Anonymous

Fine fine film!!!

Portrait de Anonymous

This movie is visually a great cultural insight for most people around the world, seeing the Inuit culture, its people and how they live. But tragically, the soundtrack is totally out of place with didgeridoos from Australia, Tuvan throat singing, udu-drums from Africa, Shakuhachi flute from Japan and Tablas from India. The soundtrack is really good though, but it really does fool the viewer of the real music in Inuit culture. Luckily the diegetic music of the movie is correct with three correct types of music played which is the inuit songs, Quilaut drum and Kattajaq throat singing. But generally I think a movie like Atanarjuat where the culture of the Inuit people is shown for the first time in a movie, finally giving people around the world an insight to their culture - should have used more correct ethnic instruments. Instead film composer Chris Crilly just put in ethnic music from almost all around the world just because it sounds exotic and tribal. And don't get me wrong, I play ethnic instruments such as the udu drum myself, but using it in this movie is really a great loss for the quality of the movie as a documentation of the Inuit culture.

Portrait de Anonymous

SPARE ME!

Portrait de Anonymous

 PHENOMENAL MOVIE!

Portrait de Anonymous

I watched this movie for a class, liked it very much

 

Portrait de Anonymous

not string figures : string games !!! well you have an point Kunuk should bring thouse figures to an first place ...

Portrait de Anonymous

 does anyone know if this was based on a true story and if so, how long ago?

Portrait de Davie Mac

It's an age old story, found in many cultures. Just a moral tale, containing a number of threads. Story books like the bible, for example, have such things in them, and they precede that book by many years too, as most of that was taken from existing tales and claimed as their own. I much prefer this film to that book though.

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