Thursday, November 6, 2014

Geronimo: An American Legend (1993)

Director: Walter Hill

Writers: John Milius, Larry Gross

Composer: Ry Cooder

Starring: Jason Patric, Gene Hackman, Robert Duvall, Wes Studi, Matt Damon, Rondey A. Grant, Kevin Tighe, Steve Reevis, Carlos Palomino, Victor Aaron, Stuart Proud Eagle Grant, Stephen McHattie, John Finn, Lee de Broux, Rino Thunder, Hoke Howell, M.C. Gainey, Mark Boone Junior, Scott Wilson, Jim Beaver

More info: IMDb

Tagline: A Warrior. A Leader. A Legend.

Plot: The Apache Indians have reluctantly agreed to settle on a US Government approved reservation. Not all the Apaches are able to adapt to the life of corn farmers. One in particular, Geronimo, is restless. Pushed over the edge by broken promises and necessary actions by the government, Geronimo and thirty or so other warriors form an attack team which humiliates the government by evading capture, while reclaiming what is rightfully theirs.

My rating: 7/10

Will I watch it again? No.

OK, if there's one reason you need to see this picture it's because of the drop dead gorgeous scenery of southern Utah.  While I've been there a couple of times, it still awes me whenever I see it and this film beautifully captures the majesty of the landscape.  The acting is solid all the way around.  I really liked the complexity of Al Sieber (Duvall).  It's rough seeing how shamefully we treated the Indians and the ending is like a kick in the guts.  It's been decades since I studied Geronimo and the situation that surrounded him so I have no idea how historically accurate this film is but taken as just a film, it's pretty good and worth a look.  Fans of the director or writer Milius are going to have to see it.  It's a good film but some may find it too relaxed.  There's a good deal of action but it's offset by the social commentary of the American treatment of the Indians and the focus isn't so much on Geronimo but on the men who tracked him down time and time again.  For that, I found it interesting and somewhat compelling but not enough to make this a great film. The Columbia DVD is a flipper disc with the anamorphic widescreen version on one side and the fullscreen version on the other.  The only extra is the non-anamorphic theatrical trailer.

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