Dir: Tracey Deer



92 mins



Kiawentiio, Violah Beauvais, Paulina Jewel Alexis

Screened at TIFF to great acclaim, writer-director Tracey Deer’s raw, profoundly affecting drama was inspired by her own childhood and is named for its plucky protagonist – 12-year-old Mohawk girl, Beans (Kiawentiio) – as she balances experiences of community, activism, and racism.

Beans is on the edge: torn between innocent childhood and reckless adolescence; forced to grow up fast and become the tough Mohawk warrior she needs to be during the Oka Crisis, the turbulent indigenous uprising that tore Quebec and Canada apart for 78 tense days in the summer of 1990. While the ongoing standoff forces her to grow up faster than she deserves, Beans is bright and brave as she cares for her younger sister while learning more about herself and her place in the community.

Accessible, timely and touching, grounded in authentic history and Deers’ own past, Beans is told with heartbreaking honesty and powerfully depicts its protagonist’s arc of self-discovery and political awakening, whilst also bringing awareness to the oppression and discrimination indigenous people continue to face 30 years later.

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