The Biindigaate Indigenous Film Festival is celebrating its fifth anniversary with its best lineup.
"This is one of the best slew of films we're able to present," said festival director Lenny Carpenter.
The festival runs Friday to Sunday at the Paramount Theatre and features 30 films celebrating Indigenous films and filmmakers from around the world.
While the films are mostly Canadian, there are some from Australia, South America and one entry from Taiwan.
Biindigaate kicks off Friday evening with Hi-Ho Mistayhey by Canadian filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin; the film premiered a few weeks ago at the Toronto International Film Festival and Obomsawin will be at the Paramount Friday evening for a Q&A after the film.
Hi-Ho Mistayhey tells the story of an Attawapiskat youth named Shannen who led a campaign to get her community a new school.
The festival lineup includes documentaries, feature films, shorts and experimental films and Carpenter said having a film festival like Biindigaate in Thunder Bay is important because of the large Aboriginal population in the city.
"There's issues with racism. There's some conflicts and the people that move here have struggles," he said.
"We think it's important to share these stories within this community to help bridge those cultural gaps and lend some understanding to come of the issues about the indigenous people not only here in Thunder Bay, not only in Ontario, but across the world and how these issues are very similar and they resonate allover," said Carpenter.
The weekend isn't only about films, but music and art as well.
The Biindigaate art exhibit opens Friday evening at Definitely Superior and Saturday at 9 p.m., there will be live music at the Prince Arthur hotel.
For more information visit the festival website.
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