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Dances with Wolves (1990)

Lt. John Dunbar, exiled to a remote western Civil War outpost, befriends wolves and Indians, making him an intolerable aberration in the military.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Won 7 Oscars. Another 43 wins & 33 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ten Bears (as Floyd Red Crow Westerman)
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Jimmy Herman ...
Nathan Lee Chasing His Horse ...
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Otter
Jason R. Lone Hill ...
Worm
Tony Pierce ...
Spivey
Doris Leader Charge ...
Pretty Shield
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Storyline

Lt. John Dunbar is dubbed a hero after he accidentally leads Union troops to a victory during the Civil War. He requests a position on the western frontier, but finds it deserted. He soon finds out he is not alone, but meets a wolf he dubs "Two-socks" and a curious Indian tribe. Dunbar quickly makes friends with the tribe, and discovers a white woman who was raised by the Indians. He gradually earns the respect of these native people, and sheds his white-man's ways. Written by Greg Bole <bole@life.bio.sunysb.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Lt. John Dunbar is about to discover the frontier...within himself. See more »


Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

21 November 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Danza con lobos  »

Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$184,208,848 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended) | (director's cut) | (DVD special edition)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was included by Ryan Lambie in 2011 in Den of Geek! 10 critically acclaimed films that are worse than Mac And Me as follows: "Every so often, a film comes along and seduces critics into a frenzy of histrionic praise. Kevin Costner's Dances With Wolves was one such film, winning no fewer than seven Academy Awards, and appearing in the American Film Industry's list of 100 greatest movies. Although it's quite true that Costner's movie is a beautifully made drama about a Civil War veteran's relationship with a Native American tribe, there's no getting away from the fact that its title is a flagrant, barefaced lie. At no point does anyone dance with a wolf, let alone the pack of wolves its name implies. Speaking as someone who carefully scanned every frame of the theatrical cut's hundred and seventy-five minutes, and later scrutinised the two hundred and thirty-six-minute director's cut for evidence of lupine activity, this blatant piece of false advertising is particularly galling. Mac And Me, on the other hand, is an extremely clever title that, rather than making promises it doesn't plan to keep (shame on you, Costner, shame on you), chooses to pose more questions than it answers. Who's Mac? Who's me? What is the relationship between Mac and Me? They're questions that can only be answered by watching the classic movie". See more »

Goofs

When Dunbar arrives at the settlement, rough planks are being cut from tree trunks at a rudimentary sawmill. There are no forests seen from which such timber could be harvested nor a means for transporting timber of this size from a remote location. See more »

Quotes

John Dunbar: [voice-over] Nothing I have been told about these people is correct. They are not thieves or beggars. They are not the bogeymen they are made out to be. On the contrary, they are polite guests and I enjoy their humor.
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Connections

Referenced in King of the Hill: Dances with Dogs (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Fire Dance
By Peter Buffett
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
magnificent
26 August 2003 | by (Nottingham, England) – See all my reviews

I like to watch lots of films, pretty much any film in fact, therefore I can tell you i have seen a fair few duds. I have also seen some spectacularly brilliant films. Dances With Wolves is one of them. For me to have the patience to watch a film more than a couple of times then the film needs to make me want to watch it over and over. Let me tell you I have seen this film more than a few times. I think you know when a film is special to you when you watch it and you keep thinking to yourself "oh this scene coming up is great", if you can say that continually whilst watching a film then you know you are watching a great film.

As for the film itself, cinematography has never been bettered, Costners acting is OK but it his presence rather than his acting that has brought gravitas to his movies, you certainly cant argue with his directing, which along with Orson Wells, Tarantino and a few select others must rank alongside as one of the best directorial debuts. The supporting cast is excellent especially Graeme Greene who is the wonderful Kicking Bird and of course Rodney A Grant.

I shamefully dont know too much about the history of the Indian population in America, so I dont know whether the events or portrayals in the film are accurate, however artistic license is surely allowed when making what is first and foremost a piece of entertainment. Being British I have seen many an American film with British stereotypes, not once have I been offended or appalled, as I see them as interpretations, God knows British filmmakers are just as guilty of such generalisations when it comes to "foreign" characters.

Marvel at the wonderful film-making in this film not political inaccuracies after all this is a story, and a damn fine one at that, remember King Kong didnt really climb up the Empire State Building and you dont here gorillas complaining about being misrepresented. This is a point of view expressed in a great film.

Personally films dont get much better than this.


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