DOXA 2012: Smokin’ Fish is a journey of discovery
Smokin’ Fish (USA)
Against the backdrop of the grey Alaskan sky, Tlingit businessman Cory Mann is paddling down a river near Juneau, Alaska. “I didn’t want to be Indian,” he says into the camera. “I felt like I was being punished for something I didn’t do.”
Smokin’ Fish is Mann’s first-person narrative, co-directed with Luke Griswold-Tergis, about coming to terms with his hybrid identity (his mother is Tlingit; his father, whom he knows nothing about, is white). Mann explains that he grew up in California up until the age of six, when his mother’s family brought him to Alaska to be raised by his seven aunties. After attending the University of Arizona, travelling Asia, and trying to sell underwear, Mann now runs an international business out of Alaska designing Native-American souvenirs. He spends several months each year, however, taking the time to smoke fish—salmon, specifically, which he catches himself—a family tradition that forces Mann to re-examine his cultural roots.
Through candid interviews with family members and moments of self-discovery while driving along the stretch of highway that connects Alaska to the Yukon, Mann uncovers much more than just the perfect recipe for smoked salmon.
DOXA presents Smokin' Fish on May 5 at 12 p.m. at the Vancity Theatre.
Watch the trailer for Smokin' Fish.