Stream for Free: Animated Short 'Stronghearted' Debuts on NFB.CA

From a media release:


Astonishing tale of survival from former LRA captive streams for free

Toronto –
Stronghearted, a new animated short from Vancouver filmmaker Jodie Martinson produced by the National Film Board of Canada’s Tracey Friesen, is now available at Blending a haunting first-person interview with woodcut-style animation by Kunal Sen, Stronghearted tells the story of Evelyn Amony’s first encounter with Joseph Kony, the notorious leader of Uganda’s Lord’s Resistance Army, who kidnapped 12-year-old Evelyn and made her one of his wives. Martinson’s complementary radio documentary about Amony can be heard at

About the film

The story of the Lord’s Resistance Army and the pursuit of Uganda’s Joseph Kony has made international headlines. We think we know this story—but Evelyn Amony knows it better than anyone. Kidnapped by the Lord’s Resistance Army when she was just 12 years old, Evelyn was then forced to remain with the LRA, and with Kony himself, for 11 years.

Evelyn sheds a never-before-seen light on this notorious chapter of Central African history. Documentary filmmaker Jodie Martinson has spent four years learning this extraordinary woman’s story and tells her astounding tale of survival in her new animated short.

Kony raped Evelyn and took her as one of his brides when she was still a teenager. In Stronghearted, Martinson focuses on a pivotal moment at the very beginning of Evelyn’s story, when, under overwhelming circumstances, she comes face to face with Kony himself. Who is this man? What drives him? Could her kidnapper, her abuser, be the very tool of her survival? In Stronghearted, Evelyn brings us along on her mission to try to understand these questions for herself. She gives her fate, her life, to God, and begins the journey through the rushing currents of her fascinating life.

Stronghearted weaves the threads of testimony and memory together to create an unforgettable tapestry, conveying a young girl’s struggle not just for survival, but also for guidance and understanding in the face of incredible conditions.

About the filmmaker
Jodie Martinson is an award-winning documentary filmmaker. She was part of the team that produced Ghana: Digital Dumping Ground, about e-waste, which won her numerous awards, including an Emmy for Outstanding Investigative Journalism in a News Magazine. She is a regular contributor to CBC Radio One. Most recently, she co-directed Cue the Muse, about the creative process, for CBC Television Vancouver. Her first feature, To the Tar Sands, made on a shoestring budget, screened at the Calgary International Film Festival and Vancouver’s DOXA Documentary Film Festival. She hopes to make a feature-length documentary about Evelyn Amony’s life. She holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of British Columbia.