Restless Spirits

Rowdy ropin’ granny Toni Savoie-German finds Zen in the art of Rodeo.

Documentary, RT 37 minutes, Digital Beta/DVD

Shot on mini DV, Super 8,16mm.
Producer-Director: Tracy German
Editor: Lindsay Key
Post Sound Editor: Alex Bullick

Restless Spirits is a portrait of Toni Savoie-German, (Micmac/Acadian) and her zest for life, set with in her adventures as a rural rodeo calf roper and her lifelong relationship with horses.

Toni’s uniqueness is in living life on her own terms. The beautiful backdrop of this film, and of Toni’s life, is the rural Ontario landscape and small town rodeo culture. The broader theme of this film is Spirit, the knowledge that life at its best is a process. Living one’s dreams is in the small and fleeting moments that we make for ourselves, with the support and encouragement of friends and family. Through the course of this film it builds a rich portrait of a indigenous woman’s strength, beauty, courage and gruff kindness and the relationships that transpire over the course of making it.

The film begins with putting horses out to pasture in the early morning. They are grazing and it is serene, a boy runs into the pasture and the filmmaker chats for a moment about the horses and how she has grown up here with this horse. The boy picks a flower and brings it to his Granny inside the house. Toni takes the flower, gives him a hug and puts the it in water, she is in a blue fuzzy house coat, moves to the sink to finish washing dishes. Later we see Toni outside at the barn with her horse, the truck and trailer are out and she loads her horse onto the trailer. A small boy “Rowan” runs up to her and gives her a hug and asks where she is going. She replies; Granny is going to the rodeo. He repeats: Granny is going to the rodeo skipping merrily toward the camera. The truck pulls out and we follow her to the rodeo.