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Synopsis: Canadian Army Veteran and student of the horse, Paul Nichols lives with the challenges of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Amigo, has been mistreated and neglected in the past. His trust in humans is minimal.
A dance is about to start. During this training, Paul will try to establish a “conversation”, a mutual acceptance, and a partnership with Amigo.
This dance is a therapeutic conversation for both of them.
***
The dance. It is an expression commonly used by Paul and Terry Nichols, equine behaviorist experts and founders of The Forge, a program conceived to help Veterans and First responders living with PTSD.
This dance is a conversation between humans and horses to better work together, to build a stable relationship based on trust and communication. Although highly technical, when perfectly mastered it becomes a poem in movement between the protagonists, beautifully executed, where the conversation is held thru gestures, pauses, breathing.
***
In this short film video:
This dance is based on a positive approach between human and animal, going against the notion of “breaking” a horse.
It relies on trust, observation and vulnerability as power, not weakness. It produces a state of mind which allows them to connect.
At once serene and firm, Paul quietly uses his leadership, gradually creating a bond of trust with Amigo with peace ans stillness.
After the tension of the first moments, he instills calm and relaxation with his presence and his breathing.
Using the halter, Paul develops his bond with Amigo, distancing him from his natural desire as a prey animal to flee the pressure.
Through this conversation, a sense of joy, curiosity and respect is developed.

Genre

Equine Assisted Therapy, horse therapy, horses and veterans, equus film channel, horse network

Rated

N/R

Language

English

Run Time

4:00 minutes

Starring

Paul Nichols (Self)

Directed by

Patrice Bériault

Director's Statement

This documentary responds to this approach by looking at the relationship between the human and the horse in the context of equine therapy. As part of this therapy, the animal is not used at its expense but on the contrary, depends on this relationship of trust with humans and is a facilitator for the therapist, the connection with the human in treatment.

Director's Bio

Patrice Beriault started his professional career as a winner of the Lux Grand Prize with a photojournalism series on Alzheimer’s disease as well as being finalist in Travel / Photojournalism with a series of portraits in Israel.
In the years that followed, Patrice was noticed for his editorial work, collaborating with the biggest canadian magazines and some international publications such as Reader’s Digest, Châtelaine, enRoute, Time, photographing Prime Ministers, actors of the public scene and people in the street. During this period, Patrice developed his expertise in the world of advertising and corporate photography adding to his tools, video and Photo Directing.
He has among his clientele, names such as McDonald’s, CN, Merial, Pfizer, Pricewaterhousecoopers, DentsuBos, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Tennis Canada, Tourisme Quebec, to name but a few.
Over the last decade, Patrice has added another string to his bow with his contemporary animal photography, combining his expertise of photography with his experience with the world of animals.
Patrice now uses this expertise and experience to become a storyteller by focusing his approach on the relationship between man and animal and on the responsibility and role we have to play on the planet that we share.
This documentary responds to this approach by looking at the relationship between the human and the horse in the context of equine therapy. As part of this therapy, the animal is not used at its expense but on the contrary, depends on this relationship of trust with humans and is a facilitator for the therapist, the connection with the human in treatment.

Awards

EQUUS Film & Arts Fest - USA - 2019

WINNIE

Official selection

EQUUS Film & Arts Fest - USA - 2019

Country of Origin

Canada

Production Year

2019

Aspect Ratio

16:9

Camera

35 mm

Official Website

Facebook

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