Edge of the Knife
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Filmed on stunning Haida Gwaii, Gwaai Edenshaw and Helen Haig-Brown’s 19th-century epic is a nod to the grand storytelling traditions that lure us to the big screen. The fact that it’s the first narrative scripted and shot in two dialects of the endangered Haida language—which has only 20-odd fluent speakers left—also certifies it as a landmark work of cinema.
Guilt-ridden after a tragic accident at sea, Adiits’ii (Tyler York) retreats into the wilderness where he’s plagued by spirits and transformed into Gaagiixiid/Gaagiid, the Haida Wildman. As his loved ones, including best friend Kwa (William Russ), set out to capture and cure him, Adiits’ii grows increasingly feral.
Working in collaboration with Isuma, the team responsible for Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner, Edenshaw and Haig-Brown harness raging elements and swirling emotions to craft a riveting dramatization of this classic Haida tale of survival, forgiveness and community.
"Tyler York delivers a performance that goes from restless and raw to tragic and ferocious… [This is] a film stacked with stunning imagery, where the natural and mythical get tangled. Edge of the Knife begins by mourning for a lost future. But in telling this story it finds hope yet."—Radheyan Simonpillai, NOW Magazine
"As mythic as Edge of the Knife can be, it never fails to exist on a basic human scale, where every life is sacred and no one is beyond redemption."—Michael Sicinski, Cinema Scope