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Go west, young man, to Deadman Creek, and the quixotic world of Matt Sandvoss, a Wild West-obsessed visionary who straddles the line between big dreamer and boy at heart. Despite great personal heartache, Matt doggedly pursues his plan to construct a replica of an Old-West town in a remote part of British Columbia, complete with a saloon and a gaggle of villainous gunfighters, cheerfully led by his dad, Monte.

Matt’s mission raises questions for Gerald Carter, a Cree resident of Deadman Creek – about the age-old stereotypes of cowboys and Indians, the easy “commodification” of sacred land, and the troubling disparity between fantasy and history.

Deadman’s tranquil pacing and glorious vistas gently build to a climactic, clever and moving showdown between two opposing camps, between an ancient, peaceful way of life and the seductive yet violent mythology of the Wild West.

2009, 28 min 02 s

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