KAYLA

Genre :
Feature Film
Number of Episodes :
1 X 96 min.
Version(s) :
English
Synopsis :
Poised at the intersection of boyhood and adolescence, this is the story of a crucial winter in the life of 12-year-old Samuel MacKenzie. Dreaming about his father, the well-known Arctic explorer Samuel Clearwater MacKenzie, young Sam is on the verge of accepting the fact that his father will never return from his last Northern expedition, he struggles through his emotions of irreversible loss with the help of a wild dog, Kayla, which he trains to be his lead dog for a local dog sled race.

Set in Quebec in the 1920s, Sam has just moved from a boarding school in Montreal to a small rural community to live with his newly married mother and her doctor husband. Unsure of himself and his place in the world, Sam resorts to daydreaming and identifying with his heroic father. Particularly the dogs that played such a vital role in the life of the Arctic explorer occupy Sam's imagination. As there happen to be wild dogs in the area, much feared and hated by the local farmer neighbors, Sam manages to befriend and tame one of those dogs. Along the way, Jake who like Sam just lost a parent, his mother, lends his skilled carpenter's hands to build the sled for the race. Tentatively, bolstered by shared adventure and some hair-raising accidents, the two boys develop their friendship and learn to accept the loss of loving parents.
Cast :

 

Todd Fennell, Meredith Henderson, Bronwen Booth, Brian Dooley, Carl Marotte and Henry Czerny

Awards :
Montreal International Children’s Film Festival (Montréal, Canada, March 1998)
• People’s Choice Award

Poznan Children Film Festival (Poland, April 1998)

• Award for Best Cinematography

Atlantic Film Featival (Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1998)

• Honourable Mention

Chicago International Film Festival for Children (Chicago, U.S.A., November 1998)

• Second Prize for Best Feature Film

Augsburg’s Film Festival (Germany, November 1998)

• Best Feature Film

International Environmental Film Festival (Istanbul, Turkey, June 1999)

• Youth Prize