Words from a Bear takes audiences on a journey through the expansive landscapes of the West, when Momaday’s Kiowa ancestry roamed the Great Plains with herds of buffalo, to the sand-painted valleys of Jemez Pueblo, New Mexico where he showed superior writing skills as a young mission student. The biography gives a thorough survey of Momaday’s most prolific years as a doctorate fellow at Stanford University, his achievement of the Pulitzer Prize for Literature in 1969, and his later works that solidified his place as the founding member of the “Native American Renaissance” in art and literature, influencing a generation of Native American artists, scholars, and political activists.
Although his unique heritage is a central theme of the narrative, Momaday’s work asks the questions every audience can relate to: what are our origins and how do we connect to them through our collective memories? Through his literature and the cinematic visuals, the film illuminates how Momaday has grappled with these basic questions. Historical photos and original animation will complement captivating interviews with Robert Redford, Jeff Bridges, Beau Bridges, James Earle Jones, and Joy Harjo to bring audiences inside the creative core of this American Master.
Producer: Julie Sacks, Junko Tsunashima, Joe Skinner, Jeffrey Palmer, Youngsun Palmer, Sally Rosenthal, Nancy Novack, David Eisenberg, Sally Jo Fifer
Executive Producer: Michael Kantor
Production Year: 2019
Copyright Year: 2018
Actors: N. Scott Momaday, Robert Redford, James Earl Jones, Jeff Bridges, Beau Bridges, Joy Harjo, Rilla Askew, Richard West
Number of Discs: 1
Length: 85 minutes
Subtitle Languages: English (SDH)
Audio Format: 5.1 Surround
Aspect Ratio: 16x9 Widescreen