By Peter Belsito | SydneysBuzz April 26, 2014 at 12:31PM
I have seen it and it is a serious sobering work about the Native American movement that gripped America in the '70's and is now practically forgotten. Thanks to Cyril this subject is before us again in his eloquent new work.
In 1973, members of the American Indian Movement began an armed rebellion at Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in Wounded Knee, North Dakota that grabbed the attention of the world..
Elsewhere at the same time, two activists are arrested and held at an isolated sheriff’s sub-station. One is Marvin (Chadwick Brown), a lawyer whose Native American wife (Tonantzin Carmelo) died in a purported accident. The other is Bud (Michael Spears of “Dances With Wolves”), the dead woman’s brother. Both suspect that Anna was actually murdered.
They’re assigned a conscientious lawyer, Claire (Alena von Stroheim, granddaughter of Erich von Stroheim) who begins to dig. Meanwhile, they’re visited by an associate of the Nixon Administration (Ron Rogge) , a Senator, and a Hollywood star (King Orba) who is also a political activist on behalf of Native Americans. Why are Marvin and Bud being held, and why are they the subject of so much interest?
When it becomes apparent that Anna had learned of a plot by corporate interests to ravage the land for profit, perpetrating an ecological disaster that would endanger thousands of lives, all one need do is follow the money. The cause of Anna’s demise is also apparent.
Will the plots of evil men be revealed? Will Claire win freedom for the activists? What will happen now to Marvin and Bud?
French / US film-maker Cyril Morin is best known for composing scores for dozens of films and TV shows before branching into writing for the screen and directing.
His next feature, “Hacker’s Game” is currently in post-production. As he notes, Europeans are more interested in the recent history of Native Americans than is the general North American population.
The struggle of Native Americans for justice continues, which means “The Activist” is timely in 2014, although set in a backdrop of events occurring several decades prior. Over-reaching government, corporate greed, and the rights of the oppressed are themes that are still with us.