Set on the Tsilhqot'in plateau in the 1970's, Clouds of Autumn focuses on a young Indigenous boy named William as his older sister is taken away to a Canadian residential school. The film explores the impact residential schools had on the relationships of First Nations children with themselves, their heritage, and nature itself.

(2015)

The carefree childhood existence of a brother and sister is torn apart when she is forced to attend a Residential School far from home. Singular visual interpretations infuse co-director Trevor Mack’s family history with a slowly shifting tone that evokes loss and love.
— KATHLEEN MCINNIS, Toronto International Film Festival

Click to watch Clouds of Autumn


My inspiration for the story of Clouds of Autumn came from my mother and her seven siblings being taken to residential school from the 1960s to 1970s. Growing up, I had first-hand experience of how brothers and sisters who attended and didn’t attend interacted with each other. I lost an uncle after he was deeply scarred from his experience at a residential school. And I have witnessed different forms of lateral violence. So I wanted to explore where this pain and trauma started, and focus on how those relationships began.
— TREVOR MACK
 Trevor Mack and Matthew Taylor Blais direct Trinity Stump (Shayl).

Trevor Mack and Matthew Taylor Blais direct Trinity Stump (Shayl).

The creative vision for the film started with the idea of two young siblings playing together in the 1970s. I wanted to collaborate with fellow filmmaker Matthew Taylor Blais and incorporate Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal points of view about a story that is relevant for all Canadians. He brought a very unique vision and creative direction that helped us tell this story.

Clouds of Autumn almost plays like a river; its flow and form constantly changes as its characters evolve with the story. In the beginning the cinematography is very playful, innocent and curious, but as the film goes on the camera ends up becoming static and emotionless; something we wanted to be very prevalent in the film. We also never wanted to actually show the residential school itself, so we used the juxtaposition of sound and image to help tell the story through simple cuts and visceral experiences.
— TREVOR MACK

Click to watch the 'behind the scenes' for Clouds of Autumn