Sioux City (1994)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller  |  April 1994 (USA)
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Reviews: 4 user | 2 critic

A young Lakota Sioux, adopted by a wealthy Jewish couple in Beverly Hills, gets in touch with his cultural roots and solves a mystery in this thriller. Because of his upbringing, Jesse ... See full summary »

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jesse Rainfeather Goldman
Jolene Buckley (as Salli Richardson)
Leah Goldman
Lise Cutter ...
Dan Larkin
Clifford Rainfeather
Colin Adams
Russell White
Drew McDermott
Dawn Rainfeather
Ray Dawes
Ronny Quintanar Jr. ...
Little Jesse
Jim Great Elk Waters ...
Douglas Goldman
Dr. Darryl Reichert


A young Lakota Sioux, adopted by a wealthy Jewish couple in Beverly Hills, gets in touch with his cultural roots and solves a mystery in this thriller. Because of his upbringing, Jesse Rainfeather Goldman knows almost nothing of Native American traditions. He is doing his internship when he suddenly receives an amulet from the Lakota reservation in Sioux City. It is from his real mother. Jesse's curiosity is piqued, and he immediately travels to his birthplace to learn why she sent it. Unfortunately, by the time he arrives, his mother's body is discovered in the smoldering wreckage of her home. She was shot before she was burned. Jesse's investigation into her death is not welcomed by the local captain of police and his assistant. He is almost beaten to death but is saved by his grandfather, a shaman, and a Lakota woman. The newly healed Jesse begins to explore his tribe's customs. He then contacts his mother's spirit and she leads him to the film's conclusion. Written by Echo Bridge Home Entertainment

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Sometimes the most dangerous journey is into your past. See more »


PG-13 | See all certifications »




Release Date:

April 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ultimate Revenge  »

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Did You Know?


Find Your Way Home
Written by Chris Lindsey, Lou Diamond Phillips and Dan Reed
Performed by The Pipefitters with Lou Diamond Phillips
Published by Cabin Fever Music (BMI)/They Can't All Be Gems (BMI)/Polygram International Publishing, Inc. and Mind & Body Music (ASCAP)
See more »

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User Reviews

The Riddle Of His Own Identity
21 February 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

This is an interesting film for me in that I actually know someone like Lou Diamond Phillips's character in Sioux City. He's also an orphan Indian, in his case Chippewa, who was adopted and raised by Jewish parents. Unlike Lou's character, he shows no promise of becoming a doctor. I do wonder sometimes though if this individual's substance abuse problems might be partially the result of an identity problem. If you saw him now at the age of 36 you would not mistake him for being Jewish.

Lou Diamond Phillips faces an identity crisis in Sioux City. His mother Tantoo Cardinal gave him up for adoption at a young age to Mr.&Mrs. Goldman of Beverly Hills. He's grown up to be a young doctor interning at one of Los Angeles's hospitals. He gets a note from his birth mother with an amulet asking him to visit her on the reservation. When he goes there, he finds she's dead, victim of a fire of suspicious origin.

In Lou Diamond Phillips's multi-cultural background is part Cherokee Indian and he's certainly taken on Indian roles and done them quite well as he does in Sioux City. He directed this film and it's a good one that was obviously a labor of love for him. Sad in this day and age a film like Sioux City could not find an audience because it's a good story of a man both solving the riddle of his mother's death and the riddle of his own identity.

Phillips got good support from Salli Richardson as the trading post owner on the reservation, Ralph Waite, not as lovable Dad Walton, but a vicious and corrupt local sheriff and Apesanahkwat as Lou's birth grandfather, a Lakota Medicine Man.

The cinematography at the Lakota Reservation was done with an obviously loving hand. It's a good effort by Lou Diamond Phillips and his cast and it's sad more people didn't get to see this.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Beautiful movie, wonderful cast, great soundtrack!!! MrsPlanktonBuffpants
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