WaaPaKe is a story about resilience, love and transformation. Examined through an Indigenous lens, the stories of residential school Survivor-Warriors and their families offer an understanding of both intergenerational trauma and healing. We are taken to a studio set-up in front of a green screen. Through compassionate, candid conversations, Jules Koostatchin shares interviews with five individuals, family and friends, that all directly or indirectly experienced intergenerational trauma. They tell of their survival, and the impacts felt throughout families and generations. The word “Waapake“ in swampy Cree means “tomorrow” and it’s used to signify how they move forward in a good way and work towards healing with each other, within families, and within the community around them. Thematically it is a powerful, courageous, and vulnerable documentary. WaaPaKe reflects where we are in Truth and Reconciliation in Canada after the unmarked graves, and offers hopeful and determined perspectives looking to the future.
October 1 & 4: Q&A with director Jules Arita Koostachin & crew
Series Media Partner
In English and Cree with English subtitles
Depictions of Racism, Residential Schools, Sexual Language
Jules Arita Koostachin
Photo by Karolina Turek
Jules Arita Koostachin
Dr. Jules Arita Koostachin (Attawapiskat) is an award-winning filmmaker, mother, and academic. Social justice themes emerge in her films, alongside bravery, healing, connection and humour. Jules honours her Cree-speaking grandparents who raised her, and her mother, a residential school Survivor/warrior. Jules is an alumni from Concordia’s Theatre program, including Toronto Metropolitan University’s Documentary Media masters program, receiving early recognition with an Award of Distinction and an Academic Gold Medal for her thesis documentary film, Remembering Inninimowin. Jules holds a Ph.D. in Indigenous documentary from UBC.
Filmography: Broken Angel (2023); Placenta (2012); Remembering Inninimowin (2010)
See more films in this series:
A reclusive farmer begins to reconnect with Finland's near-extinct Eurasian lynxes after finding them on his land. Through a series of wildlife encounters, the farmer performs primal, moonlit rituals, blurring the distinctions between man and beast.
This moving doc zooms in on Ho Chung Village, which lies in the hilly rural area of Hong Kong. Once a decade, its citizens hold the Peace and Light Festival as a tribute to their village, its departed souls, and the gods that preside over them all.
The Invention of the Other
In 2019, FUNAI, a Brazilian state protection agency working for Indigenous rights, sent an expedition of 30 people into the Amazon rainforest to make first contact with the Korubo. This powerful film is an immersive ethnographic journey.
An impassioned plea to care for the very thing that feeds us, balances the climate, and sustains life on earth: soil. Common Ground unveils the potential of regenerative farming, to show us how saving the soil can help save us along with it.
In 2018, an American missionary traveled illegally to one of the most isolated places on Earth– North Sentinel Island, determined to convert one of the world’s most isolated populations to Christianity. This misguided mission would quickly see him killed.
WaaPaKe is a story about resilience, love and transformation. Examined through an Indigenous lens, the stories of residential school Survivor-Warriors and their families offer an understanding of both intergenerational trauma and healing.
Mareya Shot, Keetha Goal: Make the Shot
This spirited sports doc follows four junior hockey players of South Asian descent through the 2021-2022 season as they strive to make it to the NHL. Among them, Surrey’s own Arsh Bains, who signs with the Vancouver Canucks.
Exploring the luminous ecosystems deep in the Pacific Ocean alongside the countries and companies hoping to reap the lucrative deposits of precious metals lining depths of the ocean. Deep Rising asks if this may end our search for efficient green power.
On the Adamant
On the Seine in central Paris, not far from the city’s cultural landmarks, is a huge, floating barge called The Adamant, a psychotherapy day centre with a special focus on art therapy. This tender doc won the Golden Bear at this year’s Berlinale.
Physician, Heal Thyself
One of the world's foremost experts on addiction and trauma, Dr Gabor Maté shares not only his theories, but also his own story: his difficult childhood in Hungary and his long years of therapeutic practice in and around Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.