6.9/10
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47 user 23 critic

A Man Called Horse (1970)

In 1825, an English aristocrat is captured by Native Americans. He lives with them and begins to understand their way of life. Eventually, he is accepted as part of the tribe and aspires to become their leader.

Director:

Elliot Silverstein

Writers:

Jack DeWitt (screenplay) (as Jack De Witt), Dorothy M. Johnson (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Harris ... John Morgan
Judith Anderson ... Buffalo Cow Head (as Dame Judith Anderson)
Jean Gascon Jean Gascon ... Batise
Manu Tupou ... Yellow Hand
Corinna Tsopei ... Running Deer
Dub Taylor ... Joe
James Gammon ... Ed
William Jordan William Jordan ... Bent
Eddie Little Sky ... Black Eagle
Michael Baseleon ... Longfoot
Lina Marín Lina Marín ... Thorn Rose (as Lina Marin)
Tamara Garina ... Elk Woman
Terry Leonard Terry Leonard ... Striking Bear
Iron Eyes Cody ... Medicine Man
Tom Tyon Tom Tyon ... Medicine Man
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Storyline

During the early 1800s, English Lord John Morgan is hunting in the Dakotas but he is captured by a group of Sioux warriors. Morgan's guides are killed but he is spared by Sioux chief Yellow Hand who marvels at Morgan's blond hair.Brought to Yellow Hand's tribal village, Morgan has to endure physical abuse and mockery at the hands of women and children who consider Morgan to be a wild horse.Restrained by a rope around his neck, Morgan is given as a gift to an old squaw, Buffalo Cow Head, to be her slave and help her with daily chores.In the village, Morgan meets Running Deer, the beautiful young sister of chief Yellow Hand.Morgan witnesses the traditional courtship process when Running Deer is asked in marriage by a tribe member who presents Yellow Hand with gifts in return for his sister's hand in marriage.Morgan starts to fall in love with her.Also in the village is half-breed, Batise, whose mother was Sioux and father was French.Batise becomes Morgan's friend and interpreter.Batise ... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A man called "Horse" becomes an Indian warrior in the most electrifying ritual ever seen!


Certificate:

M | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Mexico

Language:

English | Sioux | French

Release Date:

May 1970 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Mann, den sie Pferd nannten See more »

Filming Locations:

Happy Jack, Arizona, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of three notable westerns made from the stories of Dorothy M. Johnson. The others are: The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), and The Hanging Tree (1959). See more »

Goofs

The yellow hand prints slapped onto Morgan's right shoulder and left buttock during his capture have disappeared by the time he is brought into the Sioux camp. See more »

Quotes

John Morgan: It just occurred to me... I've traveled halfway around the world, at great expense, simply to kill a different kind of bird.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pterodactyl Woman from Beverly Hills (1997) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I'm not a bloody horse!
2 October 2008 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

This is the story of Lord John Morgan, an honest earthy person who is captured by the Sioux in 1825. Abused and treated as an animal he comes to adapt to his life in order to survive. Enduring torture and oppression he must earn their respect in order to be accepted as part of their tribe.

The white man as part of a Sioux tribe story was given a major shot in the arm with Kevin Costner's Oscar bagger, Dances With Wolves in 1990. This picture came out some twenty years before Costner's stylish picture but the two films couldn't be further apart in terms of story telling. Here in Elliot Silverstein's picture, the scenery and scope is certainly lush, but the niceties stop there for this is a harsh, at times painful, story with realism dripping from each frame. Silverstein wanted to get as close as he could to the facts of the Sioux way of life, even bringing in a Sioux historian to oversee the production.

The Sioux are painted on both sides of the canvas, on one side we are shown them to be violent, even sadistic, but Silverstein also portrays them as an intelligent race driven on by intense loyalty to their ways and culture. Richard Harris plays our main protagonist and has a clear license to act with immense verve and vigour, it's a memorable turn that lingers long after the credits roll. Hurting the film is a twee romance between Morgan and the Chiefs daughter (Judith Anderson) and Jean Gascon's fluctuating accents start to grate entering the film's last quarter. But really the plus points far outweigh the little irritants in the piece. The editing from Philip W. Anderson & Michael Kahn is like a whirling paean to hallucinations, and some scenes are from the top draw, most notably the Vow To The Sun ritual that literally is painful to watch. A Man Called Horse may well be of its time, but it's certainly a very interesting and highly intelligent film. 7/10


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