Atanarjuat (The Fast Runner)

This film, the first feature-length Inuktitut-speaking drama ever made, tells the story of brothers Atanarjuat and Amaqjuaq. Hunters with a tribe of Inuit, they innocently provoke Oki, the ill-tempered husband-to-be of the beautiful but flirtatious Atuat, when Atanarjuat "wins" her in a ritual head-butting contest. Conflict between Oki and the brothers sets in motion events that eventually result in the murder of Amaqjuaq.

Despite being shot on digital video, Atanarjuat (The Fast Runner) (2002) is epic - even Shakespearean - in scope, culminating in an astounding 20-minute sequence as Atanarjuat races naked across melting ice floes, pursued by the murderous Oki. Atanarjuat regains his spiritual strength, revenges his brother's death and brings harmony back to the tribe.

An authentic recreation by director Zacharias Kunuk of an oral tale told over thousands of years, the film demystifies Aboriginal stereotypes by telling a powerful, universal story. When it premiered at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival, Kunuk won the Caméra D'Or, an award given to first-time directors. It also won the Best Canadian Feature Film Award at the 2001 Toronto International Film Festival and later five Genie Awards, including best picture, director and screenplay.