Berlinale: Programme

Film file

NATIVe - Indigenous Cinema



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Children tend to blame themselves for their parents' unhappiness. In a moving personal essay, Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers examines her complex relationship to her Sámi father, starting with the story of how he met her Blackfoot mother and how this blissful transatlantic romance was affected by his silent suffering. His estrangement had roots she could not grasp, painful wounds shared by many Sámi of his generation. The visual style mixes colorful animation with realism, capturing the essence of each stage in the story.

Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers

Canada / Norway 2014

English, Northern Sámi

Documentary form
14’ · Colour


Written and Directed by
Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers
Oliver Millar
Bridget Durnford
Jordan Wilson, Chad Neufeld
Sound Design
David Green
Production Design
Caitlin Byrnes, Harry Brar
Jasmin Nyack
Kara Eide
Production Manager
Laura Good
Executive Producers
Danis Goulet, Lori Lozinski
Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers, Laura Good


Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers

A filmmaker, writer and actor, she holds a degree in First Nations and Indigenous studies from the University of British Columbia and is an alumna of Berlinale Talents. Her short documentary Bihttoš (Rebel) won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Short Documentary at the Seattle International Film Festival and screened in the 2017 NATIVe section of the Berlinale. She is Blackfoot from the Kainai First Nation (Blood Reserve) as well as Sámi from northern Norway.


2011 Bloodland; short film 2012 A Red Girl’s Reasoning; short film · Colonial Gaze: The Sámi Artists’ Collective; mockumentary 2014 Bihttoš (Rebel); documentary 2015 Mavericks, Season II: Episode – Dr. Esther Tailfeathers; documentary 2016 GichiKiiwenging; documentary · Versaearcolonion (Con(versa)tional Strategies B(ear)ing Witness to the Dialectics of De(colon)ial Interpersonal Reconciliat(ion)) 2017 Untitled; short film · Radio-Check; animation · c̓əsnaʔəm: the city before the city; documentary 2019 The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019

Produced by

Violator Films

World Sales

Moving Images Distribution