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The Grizzlies
The Grizzlies (2018) Film Poster.jpg
Directed byMiranda de Pencier
Produced byAlethea Arnaquq-Baril
Damon D'Oliveira
Miranda de Pencier
Zanne Devine
Stacey Aglok MacDonald
Written byMoira Walley-Beckett
Graham Yost
StarringWill Sasso
Ben Schnetzer
Tantoo Cardinal
Eric Schweig
Natar Ungalaaq
Booboo Stewart
Music byGarth Stevenson
CinematographyJim Denault
Edited byMichele Conroy
Ronald Sanders
James Vandewater
Distributed byMongrel Media
Release date
  • 8 September 2018 (2018-09-08) (TIFF)
  • 19 April 2019 (2019-04-19) (Canada)
  • English
  • Inuktitut
Box office$518,361[1]

The Grizzlies is a 2018 Canadian sports drama film, directed by Miranda de Pencier.[2] Based on a true story, the film depicts a youth lacrosse team that was set up to help combat an onslaught of youth suicide in the community of Kugluktuk, Nunavut.[3]

The film's cast includes Will Sasso, Ben Schnetzer, Tantoo Cardinal, Eric Schweig, Emerald MacDonald, Natar Ungalaaq, Anna Lambe, Paul Nutarariaq, Booboo Stewart and Madeline Ivalu.

The film premiered at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival.[4] In October, de Pencier won the Directors Guild of Canada award for Best Direction in a Feature Film.[5] The film was theatrically released in Canada on April 19, 2019 by Mongrel Media.

At the 7th Canadian Screen Awards, Dan General, Thomas Lambe and Adam Tanuyak won the Canadian Screen Award for Best Original Song for "Trials".[6] Nutarariaq was nominated for Best Actor, and Anna Lambe was nominated for Best Supporting Actress.[7]


In a small Arctic town struggling with the highest suicide rate in North America, a group of Inuit students' lives are transformed when they are introduced to the sport of lacrosse.



On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 83% based on 24 reviews, with an average rating of 6.81/10. The site's critics consensus reads, "The Grizzlies scores thanks to exceptional performances and an authentic approach to storytelling that transcends sports drama clichés."[8]

White savior questions

The film has been the subject of analysis as to whether or not it fits into the concept of the white savior narrative in film.[9] According to producers Alethea Arnaquq-Baril and Stacey Aglok MacDonald, de Pencier was conscious of the potentially problematic racial aspect to the story, and worked with them to ensure that the screenplay centred the perspectives of Inuit youth and did not fall into white savior tropes;[10] however, the film has still been analyzed by some film critics through a white savior lens.[11]


  1. ^ "Hot Sheet: Top 5 Canadian films May 17 to 23, 2019". Playback. May 28, 2019. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  2. ^ "‘Goat’ Actor Ben Schnetzer to Star in Arctic Drama ‘The Grizzlies’". Variety, February 18, 2016.
  3. ^ "The Grizzlies, movie about Kugluktuk lacrosse team, holds workshops in Iqaluit". CBC North, February 21, 2016.
  4. ^ "TIFF 2018: Rob Stewart, Denys Arcand, Jennifer Baichwal films among Canadian titles". Now, August 1, 2018.
  5. ^ "Miranda de Pencier, Kari Skogland win DGC Awards" Playback, October 22, 2018.
  6. ^ "Les Québécois remportent plus de la moitié des trophées à l'avant-gala des prix Écrans canadiens". Ici Radio-Canada, March 31, 2019.
  7. ^ "Canadian Screen Awards 2019: English-Canadian films shut out of best picture category". Now, February 7, 2019.
  8. ^ "The Grizzlies (2020)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved October 31, 2020.
  9. ^ "'The Grizzlies': Film Review | Palm Springs 2019". The Hollywood Reporter, January 9, 2019.
  10. ^ "Mistakes and reconciliation: The grueling path to making The Grizzlies, a crowd-pleasing sports flick set in Nunavut". The Globe and Mail, April 13, 2019.
  11. ^ Chelsea Phillips-Carr, "TIFF 2018 Review: The Grizzlies — Lacrosse saves lives in this conventional Canadian bore". Scene Creek, September 8, 2018.

External links

This page was last edited on 21 December 2020, at 22:17
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