CM Magazine Review- Christmas at Wapos

CM Magazine
Reviewed by: Jane Bridle

Talon, Raven, and T-Bear, three urban Cree children, are visiting their grandfather (moshum) in his trapline cabin in the northern Saskatchewan wilderness. Christmas is coming, and other family members are expected to arrive soon. But, if the hunt for food is unsuccessful, everyone may have to return to the city. A forest fire earlier in the year has diminished the local animal population, and game may be hard to find.

The three cousins, determined to help, set out alone with a dog sled. When they don't return, Moshum goes out to find them. However, when the children discover him overcome by an illness, they must try to get him home. In the effort of surviving the wilderness, they are challenged to remember the traditional skills that their grandfather has taught them, and, in the process, they learn self-reliance and resourcefulness.

Children will enjoy the plucky characters and exciting story of survival and rescue as well as the depiction of life on a northern trapline. The description of winter in Saskatchewan bush has a cinematic quality perhaps because Christmas at Wapos Bay was originally an award-winning claymation short produced in conjunction with the National Film Board and Dark Thunder Productions in 2002.

Jordan Wheeler writes scripts for television including 'North of 60' and 'Moccasin Flats and co-author Dennis Jackson, who operates Dark Thunder production company, is developing a 'Wapos Bay' series for Aboriginal Peoples Television Network. Christmas at Wapos Bay is a strong contribution to the 'From Many Peoples' series that celebrates diversity in Saskatchewan from the viewpoints of young people from different cultures. Article by Jane Bridle.

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