I watched Kautokeino Opprøret (Kautokeino Rebellion) last night and thought it was beautifully made, layered, rich and moving.

Some of the things that came up for me:

The story is beautifully built up and plays like a Greek tragedy, showing how the main characters – on both sides – make a series of choices that makes sense to them in their situation, and how it escalates into actions well beyond what they initially could have foreseen.

It is also a reminder of the consequences of acting from reactivity, whether or not the situation seems to warrant it in a conventional view, and whether or not the consequences appear small, or significant as in this story.

And finally, the culture clash depicted in this movie continues today, with western values and culture being imposed on traditional cultures around the world, with the despair people in such cultures often experience from seeing their traditional way of life eroded or destroyed. The rebellion in this movie is not so different from what we call terrorism today. We will of course do what we can to prevent it, because it only brings suffering on all sides. But with some understanding and through acknowledging the validity of their goals and needs, we may be able to address it in more skillful ways.

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