As I am not so good at English to write a long and deep comment on this movie, I would like to refer the original scenery, surely some of readers may be heard about books like Bury me at Wounded knee. I should read and see only Italian versions of the book and also the movie, so the movie was for me a perfect re-construction of those historic facts(I could and might confuse historic facts and 'narrated' events of that book but we can't verify it with ease and the book seems to tell us in an inanimous point of view, even though it could be criticized as inclined toward Indians.)
Whatever quality Paul Newman has shown in the continuous sceneries with Cleveland, Sitting Bull or other characters, indicated by other comments, he acts perfectly matched to Buffalo Bill, who in facts, refused to intervene the reality of Sioux and Cheyenne Indians. (B.Bill was asked to take some official role between Indians and U.S governments but had run away...) The movie actually disguises well the reluctance of B.Bill's original character by mixing up with other sceneries, characters & events. Anyway this movie goes quite well as the situation is focused on the main characters like B. Bill and Sitting Bull, so the real factor for things seems to depend on the decision maker "Cleveland" as it describes,but the very general people of the American society has made the whole situations. Extinction of bison and consequently their living grounds made them no choice. This reality should be treated by much more serious and unique way of telling if the writer is conscious. Exactly wanted, the story finally explodes at the climax the absurd, confused mentality of himself in confront of the problem between Indians and general American citizens at that time(I don't think this can be interpreted in any other exaggeratedly dramatic ways)when Sitting Bull started to appear ghostly. The whites are whites and the Indians are Indians, this is the perfect description of historic verities, and the representative voice of that time and current(still, I believe... ) united citizens.
So now, are you, Americans trying to understand the verity of yourselves? or still insisting like B. Bill that that is the reality of solely those Indians?
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