Christina D King and Elizabeth Castle
Hot Docs 2018
Traverse City, Seattle, San Francisco Green, Calgary, Margaret Mead, Milwaukee, San Francisco American Indian, Los Angeles SKINS, Guelph, Cucalorus, Athena, Big Sky Doc
A longtime Native American activist reflects on a lifetime of resistance.
Lakota activist Madonna Thunder Hawk, now nearing 80, has been fighting for indigenous rights since the late 1960s. A leader in the American Indian Movement, she participated in Wounded Knee, as well as other actions, while also preparing the next generation of Native Americans through her We Will Remember Survival School, teaching the children of fellow activists and political prisoners. Among her students was her own daughter, Marcy. King and Castle’s film profiles Thunder Hawk, in conversation with her peers as well as Marcy, as they look back on seminal moments in the struggle for Native rights, and, particularly, the pivotal role played by women, while also demonstrating their present-day resolve when facing issues like the Dakota Access Pipeline. Thunder Hawk is an inspiring figure, but the film’s episodic structure and short running time prevents this project from being as fully developed as it could have been.