A true-life story of George Attla – famous Alaskan dog sled driver. The film opens with George as a young boy learning the ways of his forebears in the land where life is lived in an awesome northern wilderness. The boy, however, contracts tuberculosis. George Attla is removed from the only life he has known, and undergoes seven years of treatment in a government hospital 1,000 miles away from home. His life is saved, but his leg is permanently stiffened by an operation that fused his knee. He returns home, only to discover that he cannot fully participate in the survival work of fishing, hunting, and fur trapping, which requires outstanding physical strength and agility. George attempts to work as a busboy in an Alaska town brings further misery as Attla finds he cannot shake his tie to his family and the land. Returning again to his kin, he takes up training sled dogs. With little or no experience in racing, he travels to distant Anchorage to test his skills in a championship race against the best sprint racers in the world. No one has ever heard of him and all the odds are against him—but he wins. The film sensitively weaves the threads of an inspiring human drama, which is heightened by unaffected dialogue and down-to-earth acting.
Contact Kathy Turco for a DVD copy
ATTLA [Legendary Dogsled Champion]
Attla PBS Documentary premiered December 2019
Directed by Catherine Auxley and is available through Independent Lens