An Amazing Survivor: This week at the Shadows of the Mind Film Festival in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, a Thunder Bay filmmaker will speak about her latest film, “Angelique’s Isle,” released last fall. The film is based on the amazing true story of Angelique Mott, who with her husband, Charles, was stranded over the winter in 1845-6 when a copper miner, who promised to pick them up, never came. The island today is called Mott Island, part of the Isle Royale National Park. Faced with starvation, the couple struggled and Charles became increasingly unhinged. He even attempted an attack on Angelique, but later came to his senses. Charles died, but Angelique, an Anishinaabe woman, survived thanks to incredible perseverance and skills learned during her upbringing. Writer/director Michelle Derosier, who also is Anishinaabe, describes the plot online as a harrowing tale of survival in which “Angelique is ultimately forced to face her inner demons and beliefs as the unbelievably beautiful, yet treacherous wilderness threatens to claim her.” Starring in the film, shot around Thunder Bay, are Julia Jones as Angelique, Aden Young as Charles and Tantoo Cardinal as Angelique’s grandmother. Michelle, a member of the Migisi Sahgaigan First Nation, will be at the 2:30 p.m. March 2nd showing of the film at the festival and will answer audience questions. Mikel B. Classen does a detailed retelling of the Mott story online, including quotes by Angelique after her rescue.
Another Local Cinematic Achievement: Also for its 20th anniversary year, the nine-day Shadows of the Mind Film Festival will kick off tomorrow with a Toronto International Film Festival selection, “Giant Little Ones” by director/writer Keith Behrman. In the coming-of-age story, teenager Franky Winter (Josh Wiggins) faces turmoil and a break with his lifelong best friend, Ballas Kohl (Darren Mann), after an incident at a party. Kyle MacLachlan and Maria Bello play Franky’s divorced parents. The movie was filmed in and around Sault Ste. Marie. Saturday launches with 6 p.m. gala, followed by the 7 p.m. showing of the film and 9 p.m. after party. The film was also nominated for People’s Choice Award and voted among the Toronto festival’s top 10 Canadian Features.
Photo & graphic credits: Angelique’s Isle; Giant Little Ones