The Last Dogs of Winter

“For the past 40 years, in a remote and harshly beautiful corner of northern Manitoba, Brian Ladoon has devoted his life to preserving and breeding an endangered species: the Qimmiq, Canada’s indigenous Eskimo dog. Intimate, gorgeously rendered documentary The Last Dogs of Winter from director Costa Botes intelligently surveys Ladoon’s quixotic mission, the numerous obstacles he faces, and the uneasy co-existence of human, animal and nature in the small town of Churchill.

“Like Ladoon himself, the pic refuses to pander to those seeking only cute animal shots. As an eccentric character in a community full of them, Ladoon earns as many detractors as he does supporters, and the fair-minded Botes takes time to listen to all comers. Another bone of contention concerns the right of access to the government-owned land where Ladoon runs his operation.

“Filming with a lightweight HD camera, Botes intercuts artfully shot interviews with spectacular outdoor scenes. Among the most captivating are those of the chained dogs interacting with the curious bears, and the lumbering white bears gamboling with one another in the snow.” - Variety


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