Ngangkari (also called Ngangkari Way) looks at the role of the 'Ngangkari' (traditional healer) in the health and well being of the Anangu people of Central Australia.

It introduces three renowned Ngangkari specialists, Andy Tjilari, Rupert Peters and Jimmy Baker who show how they, as employees of the Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatara Yankunytjatjara Women’s Council, go about using traditional healing methods in contemporary Anungu life.

As they travel the dirt roads of the vast central western desert, you learn about how their ancient skills were passed down from generations.

The Ngangkari discuss the different ways they received their powers and tell remarkable stories related to their lives as Ngangkari. You witness the hands-on healing of Anungu people as they talk about the Ngangkari's connection to the spirit world and the age-old healing beliefs of the Pitjanjatara people.

Witness the healers going about their healing practices and explaining how Ngangkari need none of the tools of whitefella medicine to bring about good health and well-being. The Ngangkari explain how, as healers, they are given a responsibility to their people.

They tell of the enormous difficulties and health problems facing Anungu in their communities and that the evil spirits that cause addictions like petrol sniffing and alcoholism are so malevolent that Ngangkari cannot conquer them.

Watch them deal with their sense of despair and helplessness through their enormous capacity to persevere. With warmth and humour, you get to know three very special men.


Release dates
2001 - Australia
12 February 2013 - Germany (Berlin International Film Festival)
G - general
Ronin Films

Pitjantjatjara dialogue with English subtitles.

This is a documentary about male healers made by a female Aboriginal director.

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Cite this page

Korff, J 2018, Ngangkari, <>, retrieved 13 April 2024

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