our land beautiful
Beautiful British Columbia: like last year’s doc Haida Gwaii, Nettie Wild’s extraordinary KONELĪNE: our land beautiful takes us beyond the Lower Mainland to reveal the stunning landscape to the north, and to chart the tension between a still relatively pristine beauty and the scars that economic development inevitably brings in the form of resource extraction and power lines. What sets KONELĪNE: our land beautiful apart is that it seeks to find the poetry of everyone in front of the lens - from diamond drillers to elders who protest against them. (Also like Haida Gwaii , KONELĪNE: our land beautiful was awarded the Best Canadian Feature Documentary prize at HotDocs earlier this year.)
First and foremost a rhapsodic visual response to a place and the people in it, KONELĪNE: our land beautiful engages the senses with its ravishing aerial views and staggering vistas (as well as its superb, subtle sound design). On at least three separate occasions, Wild catches something thrillingly new and raw on camera, whether it’s a moose coming to a sticky end, horses being cajoled across a torrential river, or a power transmission tower being painstaking lowered into place by a massive helicopter. Then there’s the sequence when fish are airlifted up river for their own protection… And the scenes where a Tahltan First Nation discusses his efforts to learn his native tongue ("KONELĪNE" means "our land beautiful")… By no means a polemic, the film is instead a meditation on different cultures, different conceptions of time and value, and a glimpse of the something that will surely outlast us all.
”Transcendent, breathtaking spectacle….she let the camera hunt for art in every frame, mining veins of abstract beauty rather than sharp nuggets of political narrative. She allows every image an ecumenical gaze.” - Brian D. Johnson, Maclean’s
“A feast for the eyes… [we are] in the hands of an expert story teller. KONELĪNE is a wise, humanistic documentary… a tone poem to a beautiful land and the amazing characters who live in it. I urge you to see it.” - POV
"Beautiful, complicated, compelling." - Chris Knight, National Post