Trailer for "The Lesser Blessed," a Film from the First Nations of Canada

A teenage metalhead living in a remote community in the Northwest Territories of Canada grapples with the challenges of adolescence

Adapted from the powerful and irreverent first novel by Tlicho author Richard Van Camp, the movie, like the book, promises to give us one of the most original teenage characters in recent Canadian cinema.

Larry (Joel Nathan Evans) is a Tlicho Indian growing up in the small northern town of Fort Simmer. His tongue, hallucinations and fantasies are hotter than the centre of the sun. At sixteen, he loves heavy metal music, the North and Juliet Hope (Chloe Rose), the high school “hottie”. he’s taunted daily by his town’s golden boy and resident bully, Darcy (Adam Butcher). This is because of Larry’s tortured past, and his aboriginal roots: he, his mother Verna (Tamara Podemski) and her sometime boyfriend Jed (Benjamin Bratt) are all members of the Tlicho First Nation. When Johnny Beck (Kiowa Gordon), a Métis from Hay River, moves to town, Larry is ready for almost anything.

Skinny as spaghetti, nervy and self-deprecating, Larry is an appealing mixture of bravado and vulnerability. His past holds many terrors: an abusive father, and an accident that almost killed him. But through his friendship with Johnny, and his lust for Juliet, he’s ready now to face his memories — and his future. The Lesser Blessed, directed by Anita Doron, is an eye-opening depiction of what it is to be a young Native man in today’s modern world.

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