I recently finished production of the feature-length documentary The Blinding Sea.
The official completion date is July 1, 2020.
As an artist-historian with a PhD in the History and Philosophy of Science, I served as health and environment journalist, then executive director of a health research association, then university professor. I came to realize there is a huge rift between hyper-specialized science that observes Nature from a lab stool or armchair, and folk wisdom from within Nature – wisdom that reveals the intimate connections between all life.
In making this feature-length high-definition documentary, The Blinding Sea (108 minutes), I got out of my armchair and returned to my first love – the Canadian Arctic. And in so doing, I uncovered oral traditions among the Inuit, which led directly to Norwegian oral traditions, to long sea voyages and ultimately to this film. I hope you enjoy it!
The Blinding Sea is my first film. I produced, directed, researched, filmed, wrote and narrated it, and I composed and/or directed the music. In this non-derivative, anti-racist film, I follow the life and rivalries of the Norwegian polar explorer Roald Amundsen in the years 1897-1928 – a man who developed relationships with people in diverse cultures, in order to explore aboriginal traditional knowledge and modern science, transforming discovery itself into high adventure.
Unlike conventional biopics, this film uses the camera eye to explore polar landscapes and seascapes, capture oral traditions, and evoke psychological and physical health states. Shot on location in Antarctica, Alaska, the Yukon, Nunavut, Quebec, Mexico, Norway, Ireland, Scotland, England, Belgium and other places, this film is a non-derivative, anti-racist film that goes beyond the myth-making and myth-breaking of conventional biographies.
The film follows Amundsen and a number of his fellow explorers and competitors such as Adrien de Gerlache, Frederick Cook, Joseph-Elzéar Bernier, Robert Falcon Scott, Ernest Shackleton and Teddy Evans.
The film draws on family stories, as remembered by descendants of these explorers and also by descendants of the Inuit of Arctic Canada and the Chukchi of Siberia whom Amundsen knew best: Anne-Christine and Johan Amundsen, Bernard de Gerlache, Falcon Scott, Alexandra Shackleton, Julian Evans, Bob Konana, Paul Ikuallaq, George Konana, Gloria Corbould and others. The story-telling is supported by an original musical score and rigorous historical research.
The Blinding Sea focuses on the role played by culture, health and nutrition in polar exploration a century ago. The film offers completely new insights into Roald Amundsen’s life and works, his search for knowledge, his decision-making and his leadership style. It provides viewers with historical context and eye-witness scenes shot in the polar regions, in all seasons and all weather.