The Spirit Wrestlers

The Spirit Wrestlers

Release date:


Running time:

94 minutes


Available on DVD

Closed Captioned:


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Available in Canada

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The Spirit Wrestlers exposes the dramatic and troubling story of the century of Doukhobor life in Canada. It portrays successive governments' efforts to forcibly assimilate a unique, proud and stubborn group of Russian immigrants to this country. The film lays bare the sometimes brutal ways that governments and state agencies sought to subdue generation after generation of Doukhobors. In particular, the initiative by the British Columbia government to bring to heel a small group of pacifist and communalist Russian immigrants by seizing their children and holding them for six years behind wire fences at a residential school. The consequences were still apparent years later when some of Canada's worst acts of terrorism were committed by a radical Doukhobor faction, the Sons of Freedom.

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