Ten Canoes (2007)

Ten Canoes



Critic Consensus: Ten Canoes combines adventure, comedy, and anthropology to explore an Aborigine folk tale both fallibly human and legendary. Helmer Rolf de Heer depicts a barely represented oral tradition with a clean style.

Movie Info

A fusion of Yolngu and Western mythologies, set in Arnhem Land 120 years ago, the story tells a Yolngu tale before the first white contact.

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Comedy
Directed By: ,
Written By: Rolf de Heer
In Theaters:
On DVD: Sep 25, 2007
Box Office: $0.1M
Palm Pictures - Official Site



as Ridjimiraril

as Dayindi/Yeeralparil

as Dayindi/Yeeralparil

as Birrinbirrin

as Canoeist/The Victim/...

as Minygululu

as Nowalingu

as Canoeist/Warrior

as The Storyteller

as Canoeist/The Strange...

as Camp Woman

as Camp Woman

as Honey Boy/Messenger
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Ten Canoes

All Critics (65) | Top Critics (26)

Sometimes all it takes to bridge the chasm of eons is a little humor.

Full Review… | October 27, 2007
Washington Post
Top Critic

Gulpilil is the canny, subtle and funny narrator of 10 Canoes, a film of unutterable beauty, hypnotic fascination and universal humanity.

Full Review… | August 2, 2007
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

Parts of that narrative are surprisingly frank and irreverent.

Full Review… | July 27, 2007
Seattle Times
Top Critic

It's worth putting up with the meandering story to see the aboriginal world shown from a fresh perspective.

July 26, 2007
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Audacious and impressive, but challenging work, requiring steadfast concentration.

Full Review… | July 19, 2007
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Ten Canoes is a celebration of the art of storytelling, and of the power of stories to transcend all barriers of space, time and language. This is a movie with sheer magic in it.

Full Review… | July 19, 2007
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Ten Canoes

Simple aboriginal tales of their ancestors' tribes, with typical humour.

Ross Collins

Super Reviewer

[font=Century Gothic]"Ten Canoes" starts with a narrator(David Gulpilil) telling a story about his ancestors. Minygululu(Peter Minygululu), husband to three wives, is taking his younger brother, Dayindi(Jamie Gulpilil), to the swamps for a goose hunt for the first time. Minygululu knows that his brother has an eye on his youngest wife, so he tells him about two of his ancestors, Ridjimiraril(Crusoe Kurddal) and Yeeralparil(Jamie Gulpilil), who were in a similar situation.[/font]

[font=Century Gothic]"Two Canoes" is a beautiful exploration of the oral tradition of storytelling in Aboriginal culture.(The film is alternately shot in bleached out colors.) This is how information is related from one generation to the next. For example, Minygululu is not only teaching his younger brother about how to hunt in the swamps but also to be patient and never to do anything rash. In other words, all he has to do is wait and he will get what he wants. Remember in this society, everything is as it has been for thousands of years and will be the same for years to come. Nothing is going anywhere. And if all of that sounds very dry, do not worry. There is enough irreverence to go around for everyone.[/font]

Walter M.

Super Reviewer


Surprisingly frank and irreverent.

Robert Fearon

Super Reviewer

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