Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Edge Movie Paddle

A bit of paddle art can be found in the short scene from the 1997 film, The Edge. The lodge owner makes a bet with Anthony Hopkins' character by showing him one side of a canoe paddle and having him guess the image on the other side. On the side shown to Hopkins is an image of a black panther


With a whopping $5.00 on the line, Hopkins' character calmly recites that the image on the other side of the blade is rabbit smoking a pipe.


Elaborating on this native tradition, Hopkins later explains that the rabbit is smoking a pipe because he is unafraid; the rabbit is unafraid because he is smarter than the panther. This brief exchange serves as foreshadowing for the events ahead in the film...which features a very angry Grizzly bear later on...but that's another scene.

The symbol of the confident rabbit has been reincarnated in modern times as the Trademarked logo of Mad River Canoe company. A page on their site describes the legend further...
Native American legend has it that Rabbit was a great hunter and a bit of a trickster, but most of all Rabbit was confident in his abilities. So confident in fact, that even as Lynx circles the fern, planning his attack, Rabbit is free to enjoy his pipe, secure in his abilities to avoid this mortal enemy.
To film mentions that this is specifically a Cree legend, but that may be a bit of artistic license. Adney describes the decoration used on Malecite canoes on pages 86-87 in Bark Canoes and Skin Boats of North America It also seems that this imagery featured prominantly in the Passamaquoddy birchbark artwork of Tomah Joseph. Ferdy Goode posted some great pics of this Wooden Canoe forums.



20 comments:

Anonymous said...

Where can I purchase a paddle like the one in the movie "the Edge" with the panther & the rabbir

Murat said...

Don't have a clue...try making one yourself. There's enough info in the archives of this blog to show you how to do it.

Anonymous said...

where can i get a better picture of the whole paddle so I can try re-creating the same design on an old beavertail i have that needs restoration?
thanks

Murat said...

Don't know of anywhere else you can find this design...I think it was a movie prop that was made to fit the script with quite a bit of creative license. The only thing I can think of is to rent the DVD and try to do a screen capture on your computer.

Anonymous said...

I had a paddle painted for my husband by an aspiring artist. She did a fantastic job and my husband was totally pleased. It looks exactly like the one on the Edge and she created it from pictures I blew up from the movie clip.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to purchase a paddle replica like the one in the movie The Edge.. anyone with any info can email me @ sonnyhooper78@yahoo.com thanks!

Anonymous said...

I bought a useed paddle from an antique shop and had a local artist paint it for my husband's birthday. It's beautiful and looks just like the movie prop. Wish I could paste a picture of it.

Anonymous said...

rabbits and panthers did not exist in america. Thus it is unbelieve that native tribes can uses them as symbols

Anonymous said...

We have panthers to this day in Southwest Florida, so that statement is incorrect. Of course, we also have rabbits, too. lol.

Anonymous said...

The paddle was painted by an artist here in Canmore Alberta named Chris Dymitri he also carved the Totem Poles from blue styrofoam, i was on the crew of the movie for 6 months, I own the chestnut canoe seen at the end of The Edge and will sell it for 1500.00 text 403 688 2111 Rodger

Jared Wilson said...

Can you get me in touch with the person who did yours. I need one. Thank you.

Jared Wilson said...

Can anyone point me in the direction to get a good replica. I need one. Please and thanks.

Unknown said...

Jared Wilson,
Were you able to get a paddle? I am making one now for my dad. I would be willing to do one for you possibly.

Jared Wilson said...

I would love that as long it didn't break me. You can get ahold of me directly at jbwilson3791@yahoo.com I am very responsive to emails. Thank you for the inquiry, I'm excited.

Chig said...

Hey Unknown - How's your paddle coming along? I am also making one and was wondering how you were progressing with yours -

Jose G. Sada said...

Im looking for a replica of this paddle. I plan to gift it to my father as his 50th birthday present. Could someone please tell me where I could buy one or where can I get one crafted, I would really apreciate it. here is my contact info. jgsadas@gmail.com. Thanks!

Chig said...

I am just finishing making one for my sister's birthday. I am pretty happy with the way it has turned out.

Linda Tymko said...

Would you be willing to make another one for our aunt's 60th birthday. We wanted as a group gift for her cabin. You can text me at 250 215 8731 and my name is Linda

Linda Tymko said...

I do not know if you got my first message but I am looking for that paddle if you're willing to make one you can call me at 250 215-8731

Chig said...

I got your message Linda - you can email me directly at eheape@zeusinc.com

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