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This film recounts the events involving the Metis rebel leader Louis Riel and his battles against the Canadian Federal Government when they threatened his people. The first was a successful rebellion in 1873 which created the Province of Manitoba and a later more violent and unsuccessful one in Saskatchewan in 1885 which led to his capture, trial and eventual execution. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm <email@example.com>
Christopher Plummer played John A. Macdonald, the Prime Minister of Canada from 1867 to 1873 and again from 1878 until his death in 1891. He was succeeded as Prime Minister by Plummer's great-grandfather John Abbott. See more »
As Canadian fare goes, this is very good. The original historical story is already very dramatic, so little was added for the screenplay. Also, the fictional parts were usually plausible enough. The film's strongest feature was Plummer's performance as John A.
My biggest complaint was the makeup on Raymond Cloutier (Riel). He should have had a moustache, and perhaps a beard at some times. The physical appearance of the historical Riel is very familiar, and I found it annoying that the film did not respect it.
It is unfortunate that there isn't the money to make a really top-notch production based on the Riel story. I found myself thinking of the excellent visual images in films like Dances with Wolves and Last of the Mohicans. Perhaps this story will find its way into the cinema again in the future.
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