mirandda | Tacoma, WA United States | 10/24/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"A big vote for "Johnny Greyeyes" which, though not native-produced or
directed, is all-native cast and deals vividly and tenderly with Native
women in prison, domestic violence, spirituality (contemporary), and a
Native woman in a serious relationship with a native woman. Gail Maurice
as the protagonist is wonderful. Unfortunately the film has gotten some
bad reviews. I have to disagree with those reviewers. The combination of
Native women, prison, and same-sex love is very uncomfortable for the
average viewer, which is all the more reason to have and show this film.
It's another mythology-buster, and in terms of film study, definitely
ground-breaking, one of the first to open up these issues to a wider
Flawed but Interesting
James Igoe | Denver, CO United States | 08/16/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This film takes awhile to get into, because the acting at the beginning is so poor as to render it unbelievable. It is clearly a low-budget production, and the actors are sometimes visibly uncomfortable on camera. This being said, the film has some redeeming qualities. The love affair between Johnny Greyeyes and her cell mate (most of the film takes place in prison) is convincing and at times gut wrenchingly beautiful. The relationship between Johnny and her mother is likewise beautiful. The best part of the film, in my opinion, are several sequences of street scenes in Toronto and Vancouver, which are juxtaposed to a First Nation Reserve (somewhere in Northern Ontario I suspect). All of the characters are redeemed, but in a less than convincing fashion. To put it bluntly, the ending [was weak]! This should be of interest to anyone interested in the plight of Contemporary First Nations People, especially with regards to the criminal justice system. Its not a Sheman Alexie masterpiece. It doesn't even rate with a much better Canadian film -- Dance Me Outside. ..."