Saturday, October 21, 2017

imagineNATIVE 17 Film Review - Kayak to Klemtu

The plan to put pipelines or use oil tankers to transport the product through natural ecosystems is an issue of great concern that has become a balancing act for many governments. The oil companies state that they are conservationists taking every step to avoid any impact to the natural environment that they are in. The Indigenous peoples and environmentalist point out that it only takes one mistake  one spill to wipe out an entire ecosystem for scores of years. The Indigenous peoples that rely on the water for fishing, washing and life itself say that risk is not acceptable plus what is in the water will always come to the land itself.

14-year-old Ella (Ta'kaiya Blaney) had planed to make the 500 Km trip from Tai'Amin to Klemtu up the Inside Passage with her Uncle Dave (Evan Adams). However at the films opening Uncle Dave had just passed from a terminal disease but made Ella promise that she would make the trip and testify in his place against the pipeline permitting oil tankers into the territorial waters. Still determined to make the trip against the wishes of her mother Maureen Ella enlists Dave's stepson Alex, widow Cory (Sonja Bennett) and her other Uncle the reluctant Don (Lorne Cardinal) to make the journey. School teacher Cory who's been having great difficulty with Dave's passing is definitely an indoor girl but ready to go. Alex who can be described as clumsy at best is game as well. Don who has money issues plus an estranged son up in Klemtu takes the most persuading to join the party.

Director Zoe Leigh Hopkins manages to find several funny moments in a serious and somber adventure. The group is inexperienced except for Don, on a tight deadline to get Ella to Klemtu to in time in addition to pledging to spread Dave's ashes along the way. Lorne Cardinal authors the best comedic moments as Don. His rant against environmentalist is a classic oratory extent. Non-native Cory provides the physical humour balancing delicately on that border between laughing with and laughing at.

The natural beauty captured along the trip is breathtaking. Seals great the foursome as they push off. They cross many whale sightings both tails in the distance and Hopkins great use of underwater shots. But The best sequence may be when the paddlers argue if they are passing an abundant group of seals or Sea Lions within arms reach on their port side.

Kayak to Klemtu puts the spotlight on an important issue that could have disastrous effects on our waterways and coastlines. Just after the film wrapped there was a spill near Bella Bella that saw a tugboat hauling an American fuel barge go down spilling 100,000 litres of diesel into the main food gathering source for the area shutting down the clam fishery as it leaked oil for 32 days. This labeled minor incident not requiring an environmental impact survey will effect the fishing in the area for at least 10 years.

*** Out of 4.

Kayak to Klemtu | Zoe Leigh Hopkins | Canada | 2017 | 90 Minutes.

Tags: Tai'Amin, Klemtu, Inside Passage, Great Bear Rainforest, Kyak, Ashes, Community Gathering, Pipeline, Oil Tanker, Oysters.

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