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A Sorry State

This screening took place on
Sunday, November 25, 2012 at 8:00pm
Yukon Arts Centre

Is saying “sorry” enough? Can a word fix past atrocities and heal victims’ pain, or is talk cheap? With three apologies from the Canadian government to his parents and stepparents for past racist actions, Whitehorse-based filmmaker Mitch Miyagawa has the most apologized-to family in the country-maybe even the world. In 1988, Miyagawa’s family received an apology from then Prime Minister Brian Mulroney, for the internment of 22,000 Japanese Canadians during WWII. Mitch’s stepmother Etheline was a young victim of residential schools for Aboriginal children and his stepfather, Harvey, is the grandson of Chinese immigrants who were burdened with a hefty head tax. Both families were forced to live apart from their loved ones. Both families have received official apologies from the Canadian government. But what do they mean, to his parents, his young children and his country? Print courtesy Panacea Entertainment. About the short film Savage (Lisa Jackson, 6 min, 2010) This award-winning short drama comes out of a project called "The Embargo Collective," a project of Toronto's imagineNATIVE Festival. Documentary filmmaker Lisa Jackson (Suckerfish) was asked to create a musical that would include heavy metal, set decoration, and include both actors and non-actors. SAVAGE is the result. It's late summer, the 1950s, and a young native girl is on her way to residential school. A Cree woman in her kitchen sings a lullaby in her native language. When the girl arrives at her destination, she undergoes a transformation that turns the woman's gentle voice into a howl of anger and pain. Once installed in the residential school, life is stern and there aren't many chances to be a kid...except when no one is watching. Print courtesy Moving Images Distribution.
  • Directed by Mitch Miyagawa
  • 2012, Yukon
  • 53 minutes

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