Canadian Women Film Directors Database
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Directed by Lisa Jackson
Canada, 2004 (video art, 8 minutes, colour, English)

Film Description:
"When she was ten, Lisa Jackson fled Toronto to live with relatives in Vancouver to escape her mother's depression, alcoholism and prescription drug abuse—legacies of the residential school experience. Now [in Suckerfish], sifting through her memories and her mother's letters, she constructs a portrait of a mother whose drive to love her daughter triumphed over her demons of addiction. Animation, childhood photographs and stylized recreations add the young child's whimsical voice to this moving, at times humorous, look at the director's relationship to her mother and Native identity."
-- V tape (source)


Quote by the Director

"I think for me making Suckerfish wasn't that I wanted to tell my personal story, which I didn't, at all. But it was that I saw that my mother was somebody who from the outside looked like a stereotype, you know, she had addiction issues, she wasn't very present during my upbringing. Making Suckerfish, for me, was a way to show who one person was behind all that difficulty and trauma, and how she was a loving mother. My first inspiration to do it was to try and bring a bigger, more compassionate view towards people who suffered through residential school and the kind of parenting that they've done afterwards. And when I made it, I thought it would be the only Native film that I would make because I didn't feel that I had a right to tell those stories. That changing had a lot to do with how Suckerfish was received and what happened after that."
-- Lisa Jackson (source)

Bibliography for Suckerfish

Journal Articles

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