Songs My Brothers Taught Me

Songs My Brothers Taught Me is set in the often starkly beautiful Badlands of South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation; most of the key players are young Lakota Native... Read more

Songs My Brothers Taught Me

Directed by Chloe Zhao

Year: 2015
Running Time: 94
Color Type: Color
Country: U.S.
Language: English
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Songs My Brothers Taught Me

Directed by Chloe Zhao

The setting is the often starkly beautiful Badlands of South Dakota's Pine Ridge Indian Reservation; most of the key players are young Lakota Native Americans who attend Little Wound High School. Johnny and his preteen sister, Jashaun, spend time on horseback when they're not selling illegal liquor or tattoo-designed apparel. Director Chloe Zhao captures the subtleties of a marginalized existence in which the historic culture of a people can't compete on a level playing field with the modern problems of poverty, alcoholism, and violence. Amazingly, she embroiders her tale with moments of breathtaking natural beauty that offset the despair her characters struggle against. SONGS is an auspicious debut feature from a director whose superb eye is informed by the sophisticated and nuanced compassion she brings to her story. Synopsis courtesy of Film Forum.


"Whether the camera observes horseback riders atop a bluff or a distant thunderstorm on the horizon, you are mesmerized by the desolate beauty of the Great Plains and the changing sky overhead."

"The soulful naturalness of young screen-acting novices John Reddy and Jashaun St. John is what fuels the movie."

"It’s a wispy but charming story of two slightly adrift kids who just happen to live on a reservation, and willingly runs the risk of seeming a bit ordinary."

"...its poetic minimalism is atmospheric."


  • Winner, Best Director, American Indian Film Festival

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Venue City Date
Mesilla Valley Film Society Mesilla 1469160000July 22 - July 28, 2016
Wexner Center for the Arts Columbus 1469160000July 22 - July 23, 2016
Cleveland Museum of Art Cleveland 1468123200July 10, 2016
Zeitgeist Arts Center New Orleans 1464321600May 27 - June 2, 2016
Flint Institute of Arts Flint 1464321600May 27 - May 29, 2016
The Loft Cinema Tucson 1462852800May 10, 2016
Reel Pizza Cinerama Bar Harbor 1462852800May 10 - May 12, 2016
The Screen Santa Fe 1462507200May 6 - May 13, 2016
Oklahoma City Museum of Art Oklahoma City 1461902400April 29-May 1, May 5
State Theatre - Chamberlain Chamberlain 1461902400April 29 - May 5, 2016
Union Theatre Milwaukee 1461902400April 29 - April 30, 2016
State Theatre of Modesto Modesto 1460692800April 15 - April 21, 2016
Mary Riepma Ross Film Theatre Lincoln 1460692800April 15 - April 21, 2016
Alamo Drafthouse Littleton Littleton 1460347200April 11, 2016
New Parkway Theater Oakland 14602608004/10 & 4/12 only
Media Arts Center San Diego / Digital Gym San Diego 1460088000April 8 - April 14, 2016
West Mall 7 Sioux Falls 1460088000April 8 - April 14, 2016
Mac Theatre McLaughlin 1459915200April 6 - April 12, 2016
Real Art Ways Hartford 1459483200April 1 - April 7, 2016
Art House Cinema 502 Ogden 1459483200April 1 - April 14, 2016
Polk Theater Lakeland 1458878400March 25 - March 27, 2016
Miami Beach Cinematheque Miami Beach 14588784003/25-27, 3/29-30, 4/2-3
Northwest Film Forum Seattle 1458878400March 25 - March 27, 2016
Alexander Valley Film Society Cloverdale 1458792000March 24, 2016
Studio C Cinema Cornelius 1458273600March 18 - March 20, 2016
Fargo Theatre Fargo 1458273600March 18, 2016
Walker Art Center Minneapolis 1457672400March 11 - March 13, 2016
Nunpa Theater Kyle 1457672400March 11 - March 17, 2016
Yakama Nation Cultural Center Toppenish 1457672400March 11 - March 17, 2016
Plaza De Oro Twin Santa Barbara 1457499600March 9, 2016
Film Forum New York 1456894800March 2 - March 15, 2016

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