Synopsis by Mark Deming
The first dramatic feature shot in Alaska by an Alaskan filmmaker with a fully Alaskan cast, Kusah Hakwaan) is a tale of terror based on folk tales of the Tlingit Indian tribe. As an Alaskan father (James Williams) takes his sons to hear their uncle (Kuth Ka) tell the tale of the legend of Kusah Hakwaan, the film fades into a re-enactment of the story, in which two brothers (Paul Asicksik and Don Savage) hunt for food while they are bedeviled by the evil Kusah Hakwaan (Diane E. Benson) and helped by Raven the Trickster (Gary Waid). Much of Kusah Hakwaan's dialogue is in the authentic Tlingit dialect, and the film strives for an authentic depiction of Native American lore and legend. Kusah Hakwaan was shown as part of the 1999 Dances With Films Festival of the Unknowns.