________________ CM . . . . Volume VIII Number 12 . . . . February 15, 2002

cover Patrick's Story.

Doug Cuthand (Director). Lori Kuffner & Jennifer Torrance (Producers).
Montreal, PQ: National Film Board of Canada, 1999.
24 min., VHS, $39.95.
Order Number: C9199 286.

Subject Headings:
Abused teenagers-Suicidal behaviour.
Cree Indians-Suicidal behaviour.
Cree Indians-Canada-Ethnic identity.

Grades 9 and up / Ages 14 and up.

Review by Anne Letain.

*** /4

Patrick's Story is the story of Patrick Bird, a young Cree man abandoned by his parents as a toddler. His is a narrative of loss, sexual abuse, a foster care system which fails him, self-loathing and self-mutilation. The throwaway kid ultimately contemplates suicide, and his description of his own plans is gut wrenching. However, Patrick has a certain internal resonance and an abiding spirituality which leads to his survival and eventual success. This 24 minute video concentrates on Patrick's journey to personal success and the difference that just one individual can make in another's life. The positive nature of this film, as well as its length, make it a good classroom resource, particularly for such courses as Career and Life Management. The native students who watched this video commented that it was "pretty sad," but that it showed that there were other alternatives to suicide. They also said that Patrick's youth had been lost and he felt shame. However, Patrick's ultimate success as an actor and musician led them to also describe him as a role model for other aboriginals.

Recommended.

Anne Letain is a teacher-librarian and school library consultant in Southwest Alberta.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364

TABLE OF CONTENTS FOR THIS ISSUE -February 15, 2002.

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