Native Spirit & The Sun Dance Way are two unique, feature-length documentaries contained in a 2-Disc DVD with an additional 90 minutes of rich special features. Native Spirit & The Sun Dance Way are official selections for American Indian Film Festival and the Montreal First People's Festival Native Spirit: As the Plains Indians were hunted down and driven onto government reservations, their spiritual and cultural traditions were threatened with extinction. The American government sought to not only physically contain the Indians, but more importantly, to forcibly destroy their culture and spiritual traditions. The brutal attempt to destroy the Indians centuries old way of life took a terrible toll. Native Spirit movingly tells the history that many Americans would prefer to forget, and poignantly conveys a story many Americans have never heard: the story of the ultimate triumph of the Native Spirit. The Sun Dance Way This is the story of a remarkable preservation of an ancient sacred ceremony. The Sun Dance still remains at the center of today s Plains Indian tribes despite a government bent on its destruction. In this documentary, the ceremony is described in the words of Thomas Yellowtail, a revered Sun Dance Chief of the Crow Indian Tribe for over thirty years. Yellowtail's first person account is brought to life by the narration of internationally known Native Peoples actor, Gordon Tootoosis (Legends of the Fall ). Yellowtail's words provide a first hand account of the symbolism and meaning at the heart of the Sun Dance. Unique photographs and video footage of more than 15 Crow and Shoshone Sun Dances, from as far back as 1903, reveal the mystical beauty of this ancient sacred ceremony. The Sun Dance Way provides a message of inspiration to Native and non-Native people everywhere.
In The Sun Dance Way unique photographs and video footage reveal the symbolism and mystical beauty of the ancient Sun Dance ceremony. Gordon Tootoosis (Legends of the Fall) brings to life the words of revered Sun Dance chief, Thomas Yellowtail. --American Indian Film Festival
"Native Spirit & The Sun Dance Way will be a valuable addition to the materials used in my World Religions class. It is a beautifully crafted documentary, which is both accurate in its content and respectful of the underlying meaning of Native American religious traditions." --James S. Cutsinger, Professor of Theology and Religious Thought at the University of South Carolina
"Native Spirit & The Sun Dance Way is an informative and moving documentary which treats its subject with the appropriate sensitivity and respect. It communicates a real sense of the grandeur, beauty and nobility of the spiritual heritage of the Plains Indians. Drawing heavily on the words of the late Sun Dance Chief, Thomas Yellowtail, it gives an authentic account not only of the Sun Dance rite but of the whole spiritual economy of which it is the central expression. Native Spirit brings this traditional wisdom to the attention of Indians and non-Indians alike, and will contribute to the preservation of modes of experience and understanding which are so urgently needed in the modern world." --Harry Oldmeadow, La Trobe University, Australia