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Indie Film On Native American Elder Comes To West Michigan

Courtesy Roaring Fire Films

One of the longest-running indie films in recent years is making a few stops in West Michigan September 26 through 28.

Although Neither Wolf Nor Dog premiered nearly two years ago, British filmmaker Steven Lewis Simpson says it remains relevant because many viewers find it to be a breath of fresh air in a world of horror and superhero movies.

“It’s based on a popular Native American novel that came out in the mid-Nineties, also called Neither Wolf Nor Dog,” Lewis said. “Basically, it’s like a road movie, going from the author’s house in Minnesota, and he gets sucked into a road trip through the heart of the Dakotas by a Lakota elder and his best friend. And the elder is trying to basically open his (the author's) eyes and heart to the reality of his world and worldview.”

The Lakota elder is near the end of his life, and calls upon the white author to tell his story, said Simpson. Actor Dave Bald Eagle starred in the film at the age of 95. Though Bald Eagle has since passed away, Simpson said Hollywood - and movie- goers - need to pay more attention to the perspectives of older people.

“It fascinates me that Hollywood is so fixated on youth, and yet the most interesting people are those that have lived, and films should be concentrated more around the most interesting characters. Here it’s not just a Native perspective, but it’s very much an elder perspective,” Simpson says.

Neither Wolf Nor Dog will be shown at several theaters in Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, Hastings, and Three Rivers between September 26, 27, and 28.

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