About the Film
The Iroquois Confederacy, known more traditionally as the Haudenosaunee, was given the game of Lacrosse as a gift from the Creator. It is in their cosmology. Lacrosse was believed to be a ‘Medicine Game’ that was played for healing and strengthening the mind, body and spirit of the players. The Iroquois Nationals Lacrosse Team is the flagship of the Haudenosaunee. The team members travel on Iroquois passports, and carry their nation’s flag, colors and sticks into international competition against the best teams in the world. In 2010, the United Kingdom (UK) declined to officially recognize the Haudenosaunee passport. In a mad diplomatic scramble, the US State Department offered the team the option of using US passports. The team respectfully declined – acceptance of this offer would have nullified their rights to travel as Haudenosaunee. This led to 24/7 media coverage about the Iroquois Nationals and their plight. Thousands of stories and news features about the stand-off aired in several languages around the world for many weeks. In the end, the Haudenosaunee stood their ground and refused to back down. They did not compete. The net result was a proclamation to the world at large that the Iroquois are equal to all Nations and Nation States with no other agenda than to be who they are – vital, strong and sovereign. This summer, in Denver, the 2014 FIL World Lacrosse Championship Games provided extraordinary excitement as the Iroquois Nationals competed with 40 countries including the US, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Sweden, Uganda and Japan. For the first time in FIL history, The Nationals went proudly home with a bronze medal. The Thompson brothers, now considered to be the best Lacrosse players in the world, captured and dominated public interest and imagination. Fans rushed to get an autograph, photo, or just a glimpse of these remarkable Iroquois athletes.
The LA Times notes “‘Spirit Game,’ about the Iroquois roots of lacrosse, is no ordinary sports documentary”