A Navajo boy stoically endures hardship, hunger and the death of his family.

Nominated for two Academy Awards in 1952, NAVAJO follows a young “Indian” boy named Son of the Hunter (played by Frances Kee Teller) in his search for what “home” means to him following the death of his parents. After being shuffled into an oppressive Indian boarding school designed to assimilate him into US culture, he shakes himself free and runs into the cavernous homeland of his ancestors with representatives of his school in hot pursuit.

“Unusual, truly picturesque and convincing” – New York Times

Filmed almost entirely on reservation land (specifically in majestic Canyon de Chelly) with tenuous permission from what was then called the United States Indian Service (the agency repeatedly tried to ban production of the film), it’s equal parts character-driven plot for the main character and advertisement for the supposedly untouched natural beauty of the West.

“Memorable – stirringly beautiful”Christian Science Monitor

The film touches on a number of different issues pertinent to the experience of “Indians,” as they were called in the film (and as some refer to themselves, reclaiming the term). The 72 minute movie examines the dispossession of Native American peoples, the Indian boarding schools set up by the 1887 Dawes Act to “kill the Indian to save the man,” and environmentalism, all through Indigenous eyes. Our lens into this world is a child, meaning our dives into each of those topics never get too deep, but each leaves us with more to think about and look into in future investigations.

While the film may well show its age, it is still important to our understanding of how film (especially lower-budget indie films) can change minds and hearts and push for systemic change as well. It’s very much a piece of its time.

The cast features:

  • Francis Kee Teller
  • John Mitchell
  • Mrs. Kee Teller
  • Sammy Ogg
  • William Draper
  • Hall Bartlett

The DVD version features a wonderful selection of bonus materials including:

  • Commentary by Francis Kee Teller
  • ‘Canyon de Chelly’ Photo-essay by Deborah Lem, Diné
  • ‘The Canyon Matters” by Genny Yazzie, Diné
  • 1952 National Publicity Tour with Mr. Teller (age 8)
  • ‘Our Navajo Neighbors’ 1952 documentary
  • 2K scan from the Academy Film Archive preservation negative

1952 / 72 minutes / Docudrama / Black & White / English / A film by Norman Foster


Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to or simply choose from the options below:

License Options

For group screening prices, please inquire.

In-home/personal use copies are available on Amazon:

Watch the trailer

Watchman’s Canoe, The

Navajo Code Talkers of World War II

Shadow Nation


15-002Originally broadcast on the Smithsonian Channel and the Aboriginal Television Network, Raven Tales brings-to-life North American Aboriginal folklore in a series of half-hour (24 min.) episodes released in two season sets.

With stunning CGI-animation, the 26 episodes were developed by Chris Kientz and produced by Calgary-based New Machine Studios in partnership with Vancouver Artist and Producer Winadzi James. The series targets school-age children and their families, bringing North American history to life; teaching while it entertains and engages.

The extensive collection tells of the adventures of Raven, the most powerful deity of North American native mythology. Each episode features an original interpretation of a popular tale from the folklore of our First Peoples and addresses important, cross-cultural and child-friendly themes like “be yourself,” “don’t judge a book by its cover,” “bullying,” “friendship,” “beauty’s on the inside” and much more. 

Raven Tales 02-003is a truly well-rounded program series for children of all ages. And… each episode corresponds to a Graphic Novel (not available through Soundview) to enhance the overall series impact and viewer experience. Additionally, Scholastic offers a Raven Tales Teachers’ Guide separately.

With a great cast of both animal and human characters, Raven Tales offers a continuity of story-line with friends that everyone can identify with… Raven, Dza, Gwai, Coyote, Seawolf and many more are all there to add dimension to each tale.

The critical response to Raven Tales has been overwhelming. Awards include, but are not limited to those below:

  • American Indian Film Festival, San Francisco/USA – Best Animated Film
  • Houston Worldfest, Houston/USA – Gold Remi
  • Montreal First Peoples Film Festival/Terres en Vue, Montreal/Canada – Creation Category, Best Picture
  • Reel to Real Children Festival, Vancouver/Canada – National Film Board of Canada Best Animated Film Award
  • Maori Film Festival/Wairoa, New Zealand – Best International Indigenous Film
  • Santa Fe Film Festival, Santa Fe/USA – Milagro award for Best Native
  • Santa Fe Film Festival, Santa Fe/USA – Governor’s Cup for Animation
  • ImagineNative Film Festival, Toronto/USA – Best Television Production
  • Native Voices Film Festival, Rapid City/USA – Best Animated Film
  • All Roads Film Festival, Washington D.C./USA – Best Animated Film
  • Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival, Winnipeg/Canada – Best Animated Film
  • Margaret Mead Film Festival, New York City/USA – Best Animated Film
  • Santa Fe Back by Popular Demand Festival, Santa Fe/USA – Best Animated Film
  • Newport Film Festival, Newport/USA – Kids First! Best Animated Short Film Award

“Amazing animation is bolstered by a story both funny and  poignant… highly recommended for children of all ages.”  USA Today

23-002“The most extraordinary and delightful film at this year’s Smithsonian Native Cinema Showcase is the animated Raven Tales: How Raven Stole the Sun. The results are dazzling; the animals are stunning, their forms based on the totems and renderings from Native Cultures, and the colors of their dreamscape environment are natural and fresh.”  – Crosswinds Weekly

Two Complete Seasons Available / Over 10 Hours of Great Programming:

SEASON ONE (13×24) of Raven Tales includes the multiple-award winning pilot episode, How Raven Stole the Sun. The inaugural season was completed in two production runs during 2006 and 2007 for the Aboriginal People’s Television Network (APTN) and Access.

In season one, the pilot characters where rebuilt and the world expanded to include the First People (episode 02). Many new characters were introduced including the Great Spirit, Wasgo the Sea Wolf, Coyote, Mother Toad, Moowis the Snowman, Kulos, Mouse Woman and the Council of Forest Creatures. The people discover medicine in episode 10, while the great flood is featured in episodes 11 and 12. The AMPIA Award-winning Episode 13: The Rough Face Girl, is the first episode to be completed in HD.

SEASON TWO (13×24) of Raven Tales includes the Emmy-nominated episode, Baby Blues, and is comprised of two production runs during 2008/2009 for the Aboriginal People’s Television Network (APTN). Most significant for season two is that the production pipeline for the show was upgraded so that Raven Tales could be experienced in glorious high-definition (HD) resolution!

New characters continued to be added to the cannon, including Great Bear, Bukwas, the return of the Old Man and his Daughter from the pilot, Spider and S’gaana the Killer Whale.  

Season two also saw the introduction of tales from south of the border, including episodes inspired by the Pueblo, Navajo, Comanche and South American Aboriginal traditions.

26 x 24 minutes in total across two seasons / 2 discs per season / Color / Production years 2006 through 2009 / English language


HOW TO ORDER:srRaven-001

Public Performance and Digital Site Licenses are available through Soundview Media Partners. To inquire or to place an order, write to or simply choose from the options below:

License Options

For group screening prices, please inquire.

LOOKING FOR THE CONSUMER RELEASE OF RAVEN TALES? Both seasons are available on Amazon! Season One / Season Two




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