Best known as the first major Native American movie made by Native Americans I thought it had some interesting perspectives on Catholicism. One is where one of the main characters father Arnold (one of the most complex of the whole movie) talks about a group of Jesuits with scorn and makes reference to a battle of sorts between “the Christians and the Indians.” I’m trying really hard not to spoil the movie for the rest of you. Then there’s a scene where another character Thomas talks about Arnold’s ex-wife Irene’s famous fried bread which is used as Communion in their church. (Does this actually happen in reservations BTW?) And he says something like “fried bread walking on water, fried bread rising from the dead.”
Here’s some thoughts from the author Sherman Alexie “I grew up Catholic - my dad is very Catholic - and then I went to college in Spokane at a Jesuit university,” he said. "I still am heavily Catholic - and Christian-influenced. I write about what I am not what I want to be. A lot more (Indians) pretend to be more traditional and connected than they are. It’s been fun to see people try to understand (the film) through Native American spirituality."