Maliglutit (Searchers)

It is winter in Nunavut in the early 1900s. An intimate, lively celebration in an igloo is disrupted by four misbehaving hunters. An elder anticipates a bad omen, so the group decides to ban these men, as their egoistic ways are a threat to the community’s stability. The men wander off enraged, feeling superior and fearless, forgetting their tradition. Far away from this turmoil, Kuanana leads a tranquil and content nomadic life with his family. He is a man of unwavering spirit, patient and focused. He sets out on a hunting trip, unknowing that savagery will befall his home, when the brutal renegades kidnap his wife and daughter. Kuanana goes out for revenge. With striking cinematography that comfortably sways between the vast open ice and the warm enclosed mood in the igloos, a hypnotic soundtrack, and genuine characters, eminent director Zacharias Kunuk delivers a masterful and artistic Western: an Inuit Western.
by Zacharias Kunuk
with Benjamin Kunuk, Jocelyne Immaroitok, Karen Ivalu, Joseph Uttak, Joey Sarpinak, Jonah Qunaq
Canada 2016 Inuktitut 94’ Colour


  • Benjamin Kunuk (Kuanana)
  • Jocelyne Immaroitok (Aila)
  • Karen Ivalu (Tagaq)
  • Joseph Uttak (Siku)
  • Joey Sarpinak (Kupak)
  • Jonah Qunaq (Aulla)


Written and Directed by Zacharias Kunuk
Cinematography Jonathan Frantz
Editing Norman Cohn, Zacharias Kunuk
Music Tanya Tagaq, Chris Crilly
Sound Tobias Haynes
Production Design Susan Avingaq
Costumes Susan Avingaq
Make-Up Atuat Akkirtiq
Casting Natar Ungalaaq, Lucy Tulugarjuq
Assistant Director Natar Ungalaaq
Producers Zacharias Kunuk, Jon Frantz, Cara Di Staulo

Produced by


Zacharias Kunuk

Born in Kapuivikn Nunavut, Canada, in 1957. In 2001, he won the Camera d’Or at Cannes for his first feature Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner. President and co-founder of Igloolik Isuma Productions, Canada’s first Inuit-owned independent production company. His feature The Journals of Knud Rasmussen, co-directed with Norman Cohn, opened the Toronto International Film Festival in 2006. He says that his professional education in filmmaking started and ended with an instruction given to him that he might recharge his camera battery.


1995 Nunavut: Our Land 2001 Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner 2010 Qapirangajuq: Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change 2011 Sirmilik 2013 Inuit Cree Reconciliation 2016 Maliglutit (Searchers)

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2017