The Journals of Knud Rasmussen

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The Journals of Knud Rasmussen
The Journals of Knud rasmussen.jpg
DVD cover
Directed by Zacharias Kunuk
Norman Cohn
Produced by Lucius Barre
Norman Cohn
Zacharias Kunuk
Elise Lund Larsen
Stephane Rituit
Vibeke Vogel
Written by Eugene Ipkarnak
Madeline Ivalu
Herve Paniaq
Pauloosie Qulitalik
Lucy Tulugarjuk
Abraham Ulayuruluk
Louis Uttak
Starring Natar Ungalaaq
Pierre Lebeau
Leah Angutimarik
Jens Jørn Spottag
Neeve Irngaut
Music by Richard Lavoie
Cinematography Norman Cohn
Edited by Cathrine Ambus
Norman Cohn
Félix Lajeunesse
Distributed by Alliance Atlantis
SF Film
Release date
March 11, 2006 (Igloolik screening)
September 7, 2006 (Canada)
October 8, 2006 (USA)
November 10, 2006 (Denmark)
Running time
112 minutes
Country Canada
Language Inuktitut
Budget $6,300,000 (estimated)

The Journals of Knud Rasmussen is a 2006 Canadian-Danish film about the pressures on traditional Inuit shamanistic beliefs as documented by Knud Rasmussen during his travels across the Canadian Arctic in the 1920s. Produced by Isuma, the film was directed by Zacharias Kunuk, who also directed the award-winning Inuit film Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner, and Norman Cohn. It premiered on September 7, 2006 at the Toronto International Film Festival, after pre-release screenings in Inuit communities in Canada and Greenland.


Set primarily in and around Igloolik in 1922, the film depicts the encounter between a group of Inuit in Arctic Canada led by one of the last shamans of the Canadian Inuit, Aua, and three Danish ethnographers and explorers, Knud Rasmussen, Therkel Mathiassen and Peter Freuchen during the latter's "Great Sled Journey" of 1922. The film is shot from the perspective of the Inuit, showing their traditional beliefs and lifestyle. The shaman and his entourage must ultimately decide whether to join the ranks of another group of Inuit who have converted to Christianity.


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