Berlinale: Programme

Film file

NATIVe - Indigenous Cinema


On the Ice

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On the frozen waters off the Alaskan coast, Apuna is out hunting with his dog sled. He spots two friends on the barren horizon, heatedly fighting until one of them is fatally stabbed. As the only witness, Apuna faces a moral dilemma when the survivor begs for mercy and complicity to avoid punishment. The frank conversation between these men reflects the mindset and values of a close-knit Iñupiat community, where the struggle for survival in the Arctic yields deep social bonds.

Andrew Okpeaha MacLean

USA 2008


15 min · Colour


Brad Weyiouanna (Apuna)
Tony Bryant (Miqu)
Olemaun Rexford (Taqi)


Written and directed by
Andrew Okpeaha MacLean
Director of Photography
Cary Fukunaga
Andrew MacLean
Andres Martinez
Sound Design
Bob Edwards
Rob Meyer
Assistant Director
James Rogan


Andrew Okpeaha MacLean

Iñupiaq filmmaker born and raised in Alaska. His feature film debut On the Ice premiered at Sundance 2011 and won Best First Feature and the Crystal Bear in Generation 14plus at the 2011 Berlinale. His short film Sikumi premiered at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Jury Prize in Short Filmmaking. Other films include Seal Hunting With Dad, The Snaring Madman, Such A Perfect Day, and When The Season Is Good: Artists Of Arctic Alaska, a feature documentary. In 2008, he was named one of 25 New Faces of Independent Film by ‘Filmmaker Magazine’.


2005 Natchiliagniaqtuguk Aapagalu · When the Season Is Good: Artists of Arctic Alaska 2008 Sikumi 2011 On the Ice 2016 Feels Good

Produced by

Kiuguya Productions
New York, USA