Movie Reviews:

Hank Williams First Nation

Hank Williams First Nation is the story of an Aboriginal family living in a rural community in Northern Canada. After questioning whether Hank Williams is really dead, Uncle Martin decides to travel by bus to Nashville to determine for himself. Because he is too old to travel alone, his nephew is enlisted to make the long journey with him. The film tells not only the story of their journey, but life as it unfolds in the community during their absence.

This film provides an authentic portrayal of life in a rural, isolated Aboriginal community. Although I became impatient with the story at times, the slow pace emphasized the truth of life in these towns, and those who have lived in one can surely relate. With so many movies offering highly convoluted versions of Aboriginal life, this movie was refreshingly accurate in its depiction of modern life. As such audiences hoping to lose themselves in another fantasy-based portrayal of the mythical Aboriginal people will be disappointed.

The movie left me with the sense that life began before the movie started and will continue long after the credits have faded. This may frustrate some who wish for a contrived version of truth which follows a standard Western plotline; however, it reinforces once again life as it is lived, not as it is imagined.

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