This is The Breath Films debut feature film. It Premiered in 2007 at imagineNATIVE Film Festival as a sold-out Closing Night film. It has since played numerous film festivals, shown in art house theatres across Canada, and featured on Air Canada. Along the way it received excellent reviews in (just to name a few) Toronto’s NOW and EYE weekly’s; the Globe and Mail, the National Post, The Toronto Star, the Ottawa Citizen, Sun Media; radio interviews on CBC’s Metro Morning and Q, among others. It has since been sold to SuperChannel for premium cable subscribers along with being released on DVD for rental and sales. Below is some general info about the film, but you can visit the official Tkaronto website for a more complete experience.
Yet for all the potential heaviness of the themes, Tkaronto is given a sense of lightness by its easy going humour and Belcourt’s eye for lyrical imagery. (It’s easy to see why he cites both Woody Allen and Terrence Malick as heroes — Jordan O’Connor’s graceful, jumpcut-friendly editing adds more visual flair.) – Jason Anderson, Toronto’s EYE WEEKLY
TKARONTO is a provocative exploration of two Aboriginal thirty-something’s caught in the urban crossroads. Ray (Duane Murray) and Jolene (Melanie McLaren) discover an unexpected connection when their paths’ cross in Tkaronto (the original Mohawk word for “Toronto”). Ray, a Métis writer, has come to Toronto to pitch his TV series, Indian Jones, which is promising to be the big break Ray needs, especially with a pregnant girlfriend back home. Jolene, a Los Angeles-based Anishnabe painter, is passing through Toronto to conduct an interview with a prominent Elder Max (played by Corner Gas’s Lorne Cardinal) and is suddenly taken aback when Max presents her with an eagle feather, an honour that she feels unworthy of. As Ray faces his ambivalence about impending fatherhood and the prospect of selling his material to ignorant TV Execs, Jolene grapples with self-doubt and struggles to finish her interviews with Max. An attraction between them develops as both are drawn together by a mutual search for meaning in their urban existence. For Jolene and Ray home feels very far away. But through their chance meeting they reveal their hopes, dreams, fears and failures and realize their common struggle: to stake claim to their urban aboriginal identity.
Here is a scene from the ULTRA Low Budget Debut Indie Feature: