Still from Colonization Road
Still from Colonization Road

Colonization Road

by Michelle St. John
COLONIZATION ROAD confronts the wreckage of Canadian colonization with radical viewpoints, historical correctives and a dash of humour.
2016  ·  47m  ·  Canada
About the Film

In towns throughout Ontario, there are startling reminders of the colonization of Indigenous territories and the displacement of First Nations people. Anishinaabe comedian and activist Ryan McMahon takes us to his hometown of Fort Frances and down its main drag, which is called Colonization Road. Similar streets have similar names in towns and cities across the province, direct reminders of the Public Lands Act of 1853 and its severe impact on First Nations, their treaties and their land in the name of “Canadian settlement.” On his journey through Ontario, McMahon explores the history of these roads, meets with settlers in solidarity and raises significant questions about “reconciliation” and what it means to “decolonize.”

Upcoming Screenings

Stay tuned for upcoming screenings!

Shane Belcourt
Ryan McMahon
Michelle St. John and Brendan Brady
Executive Producers
Evan Adams and Shane Belcourt
Film Related
About the Director

Michelle St. John

Michelle St. John is a two-time Gemini Award–winning actor with more than 35 years of experience in film, television, theatre, voice and music. Michelle was a co-founder of Turtle Gals Performance Ensemble, a Native women’s theatre company based in Toronto. She has also been a producing partner in Frog Girl Films, producing several short films directed by Marie Clements. Recently, Michelle joined ranks with Shane Belcourt and Jordan O’Connor at The Breath Films. Her first feature length documentary COLONIZATION ROAD premiered at the imagineNATIVE Film and Media Arts Festival as an official selection.