Scenes from the Glittering World

Following three Indigenous students, Scenes from the Glittering World is a meditation on adolescence, trauma, and the power of connecting with an isolated Navajo homeland.

Sig Image - Scenes from the Glittering World
Independent Lens
Premiere Date
May 16, 2022
60 minutes
Headshot of Jared Jakins

Jared Jakins

South African-born documentarian Jared Jakins' work has screened in major film festivals around the world and appeared in The Atlantic. He is film curator at Granary Arts Center in Ephraim, Utah. Jared is interested in stories of cultural intersection, and seeks to document images of community and identity emerging from those collisions. Scenes from the Glittering World is Show more his feature debut. Show less


Roni Jo Draper

Roni Jo Draper, Ph.D. spent the past 50 years in school—as student and educator. Her experience as a Yurok woman, and the realities and acute pain of discriminatory practices and policies enacted in school settings, influenced her writing and work with students and teachers. Her storytelling practices outside traditional academia are a way to explore Show more the human experience and share stories. Show less

Headshot of Scott Christopherson
Executive Producer

Scott Christopherson

Scott Christopherson was one of ten documentary filmmakers featured in Variety’s “Docu-makers to Watch” list in 2015. Scott’s debut feature film, Peace Officer, won both the Grand Jury and Audience Awards for best documentary at the SXSW Film Festival. His films have screened at festivals including Hot Docs, Full Frame, and Camden. His work has been Show more featured by the Museum of Modern Art. Show less

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Peace Officer

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The Film

Sprawling across more than 17,000,000 acres of Northeast Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah, the Navajo Nation encompasses some of the country’s most desolate areas. On its fringes lies the most remote high school in the continental United States, home to students who are experiencing ubiquitous teen trials and triumphs, while simultaneously struggling through complications unique to their isolated community.

Scenes from the Glittering World follows three Indigenous students as they maneuver through the complications of adolescence in hopes of realizing their dreams, all while balancing the responsibilities of family, the realities of attending a remarkably small school with shrinking resources, and the spectacular, unyielding seclusion of the surrounding landscape. While the school itself faces existential questions about its future, the students grapple with their own personal narratives and community expectations. Granite Sloan is a 14-year old struggling to find purpose at school and at home after the death of his younger brother. Ilii Neang is a freshman, new to the school after moving from Las Vegas, who doesn’t know if her family and community will accept her if she openly embraces her queerness. And Noah Begay is a senior at risk of not graduating; lacking the proper academic motivation, Noah has found freedom, power, and connection playing Fortnite. 

Scenes from the Glittering World is a meditation on adolescence, trauma and the power of connecting with a homeland – a poetic chronicle of daily life, set in the context of the Navajo community.