Big Crow World Premiere Captures A Teen’s Energy and Dream For The Future at Santa Barbara


Posted by Larry Gleeson

SuAnne Big Crow, a standout girl’s high school basketball player from the Lakota Reservation in South Dakota, was the primary subject matter and/or spiritual energy behind Kris Kaczor’s 69- minute documentary Big Crow making its World Premiere at the 37th Santa Barbara International Film Festival sponsored by UGG.


(Left to right) Big Crow Director, Kris Kaczor, Story Developer, Ilan Wakan, and SBIFF Programming Director, Claudia Puig discuss the legacy of SuAnn Big Crow at the 37th Santa Barbara Film Festival, on March 4, 2022. (Photo cr. Larry Gleeson/HollywoodGlee)


SuAnne Big Crow once scored 67 points in one game and led her high school team to the state championship as she hit a buzzer-beating game-winning shot allowing the high school to win its first-ever state title. SuAnne was also a cheerleader and three-sport athlete for the Lady Thorpes. In addition, she was an advocate for life without alcohol and drug abuse.

Director Kris Kaczor captures SuAnne’s legend through archival newsreels of her athletic prowess, her advocacy via a public service announcement, and her galvanizing energy across the Great Plains through the plethora of first-person interviews and her undying Lakota pride.

Due to a tragic and fatal car accident on her way to receive a Miss South Dakota basketball honor, SuAnne’s earthly bodily form was rendered lifeless. Nevertheless, her spirit did not die and Kaczor captures the life-changing energy SuAnne emanated into the Lakota people and how it has exhibited an expansiveness to cross over into today’s Lakota culture.

Big Crow starts out as a simple modern-day reflection on Native people. What emerges is a Spirit with a vision for a better way of life, a zest for living, a sharp poignant sense of humor, and who continues to smile and lead the charge for a better, more hopeful life for her Lakota people.

Best of Fest. Highly recommended!