The Last Of The Mohicans (1936)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBB.5

USA, 1936.  .  Screenplay by , from an adaptation by , , , based on the novel by .  Cinematography by Robert H. Planck.  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by . Costume Design by .  Film Editing by ,

Rousing film adventure based on the novel by James Fenimore Cooper.  plays the heroic Hawkeye, a white man raised by natives who saves two white women and their British army escort when their Huron native guide abandons them in the forest. Hawkeye falls in love with one of the women () while his Mohican companion makes eyes at the other, their personal drama playing out between battles waged by French and British troops in pre-Revolutionary America. The film features a wholly simplistic portrait of natives; for its time it could be accused of trying for a level of realism not seen among its contemporaries, but there’s no getting around the cringeworthy sight of obviously white guys wearing dark makeup and speaking broken English badly. The action scenes are wonderful, however, and Scott cuts a magnificent figure as a plastic hero. The Michael Mann version from 1992 is obviously better for accuracy and depth, but this one is a sturdy piece for its time.

Academy Award Nomination:  Best Assistant Director (Clem Beauchamp)

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