I bought this movie on a sale rack because I like old westerns. I didn't know any of the actors nor the director. The conditions were perfect for viewing it the first time through; was alone in a cabin in the Lincoln National Forest of New Mexico, USA., and I had worked hard all that day, doing things have to be done in the mountains. The heroes (Nate & the Colonel) had grown up together on a plantation in the South and were fast friends. Things happened very quickly at the beginning of the plot, stuff I'll leave out, but crucial are Nate's becoming a free man after the Civil War, and The Colonel being forced to avenge some very serious and personal affronts committed against him by one particular Union officer during the war. Nate (who narrates the story) decides to go along with the Colonel as a gesture of support and because he, as a fee man, could do what he chose to do for the first time in his life. Thus begins an amazing and unusual saga of post war hostilities among ex-Confederate soldiers, Indians, and the U.S. Cavalry.
Nobody in the movie is without sin, but the guys dressed in fancy blues & tall boots were most often the bad guys. Until this movie I hadn't known that the Cavalry was made up of Union soldiers. And that they had pressed right on into the Southwest after the war to get rid of those other rebels living in tepees. Nate & Colonel naturally take up with the Indians and come to enjoy their ways of life, a life more similar to their own than those of Yankee city folks who were causing all their troubles.
That's all the plot I'm willing to reveal. It's a rambling story with odd settings and scenes and it seems to go on forever & ever. However, the after effects of the experience (hours and days later) made me decide the movie was well worth the time I had invested in it.
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