Each week I tell myself that I will plan to do better and be a little less neglectful to my little blog. It's certainly not for lack of movies & books to review. It has more to do with my own habit of over extending myself. I will do better, I will, I promise. Well, now that I have unburdened myself, it's onward & upward.
My Reel this week is 2012's "ON THE ICE": In an Inupiaq village in Barrow, Alaska, two boyhood friends Qalli (Josiah Patkotak) and Aivaaq (Frank Qutug Irelan) test the bonds of their life long friendship after a devastating accident on a seal hunt. The two tumble into a web of lies.
All the hopes they have for a bright future, hang in the balance. Qalli's deep family connections and his fear of disappointing those near & dear to him, add fuel to the fire of the subterfuge.
Aivaaq's need for love & acceptance, coupled with his feelings of worthlessness eat at him, causing him to ache for the numbing path of self-destruction chosen by his Father and Mother before him.
"ON THE ICE" is a coming of age film, steeped in the warmth & connectedness of Native life.
It was filmed so beautifully, it was almost documentary-like. You felt like you were somehow contained within the story, observing it unfold surreptitiously. The acting was achingly real. You just knew that the young actors were in touch with the dynamics of the subject matter.
For me it brought back memories of my own childhood, growing up in Alaska: Fort Greely, Delta Junction,Peters Creek & Chugiak. Especially the wide open, sometimes desolate, but always beautiful, winters.
I felt a closeness to "ON THE ICE", a story of love, fear and choices,but also full of the joys & complexities of Native life.