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Dances with Wolves - film review

Dances With Wolves
(Film review)

The film Dances With Wolves tells the story of Lieutenant John Dunbar (Kevin Costner) who decides to leave the world of White soldiers and comes to the Fort Sadgewick to see the Western frontier before it disappears. Dunbar makes contact with Sioux Indians who seem to be interested in getting to know each other. Firstly having some communication problems, their daily visits become friendlier as Dunbar offers samples of coffee and sugar to impress Indians. He is invited into Indian village where he meets one White woman with Indian name - Stands With A Fist (Mary McDonnell), who has been taken care of by Sioux since her childhood. "The foundation for the good relation is being laid" as both Dunbar and Indian Holy man - Kicking Bird (Graham Greene) introduces each other.

Very special is the forming relationship among White Man and Native Americans that develops throughout whole storyline of the film, as well as the picture of Indian Sioux tribe who is quite civilized and with a deep cultural belief. Sioux with their harmony, generosity and a love for family are in a contradictory position to Pawnees, who are warlike and abusive tribe. On the other side there are White colonizers and soldiers who come to the unchanged country to hunt the buffalos and other animals, while destroying the natural resources important for Indian culture. Native Americans keen on their traditions and they punishing White hunters. Dunbar changes his opinion about Native Americans and he finds home for both his body and a soul among Indians. The film is directed by Kevin Costner and most of the scenes are shot in The Badlands National Park and in a beautiful country of South Dakota.

One of a few cons is the long running time of the film (173 minutes) but it can be easy to cope with because of great trustworthiness of the whole story. The film depicts real places, actors wear costumes similar to those that real Sioux tribe members wear, and even their native language is used in dialogues. Also some Indian names are used, such as Ten Bears, Wind In His Hair, Black Shawl, Pretty Shield, Smiles A Lot and many more. The viewers get to see the truly stunning and extraordinary way of life of Native Americans. The great positive of this film is also an interesting compositions of many genres, involving action, romance, drama and even western which will be enjoyed by wide variety of film-lovers.

To sum up, the film Dances With Wolves is a real work of art, filmed in 1990. It was awarded with 7 Oscars including Best Director and Best Film and it is one of the most outstanding films with great attention to culture and details. I would strongly recommend this film for not only those who are interested in history but also those who are aware of development and progress affecting the nature. Despite the length, it is very enjoyable film that leaves one with warm feeling in a heart.

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