The Last of the Mohicans: A Film Reviewed
"The Last of the Mohicans" is generally considered a very good movie. It is a very good movie, in many ways. For a romantic looking only for entertainment, this could be the perfect movie. However, like anything else, where there are highs there are also lows, and this film has some flaws as well.
The movie is technically excellent. The cinematography is superb, a credit to Dante Spinotti. Landscapes are overwhelmingly beautiful and even awe-inspiring. The sound track is also wonderful, with haunting music assisting the mood and reflecting the Native American theme, as well as sound effects that add realism. "The Last of the Mohicans" received one Oscar, and it was for sound.
The plot is, of course, based on the novel by James Fenimore Cooper, and is quite nice. At times it is overdone. This is acceptable in light of the romantic theme and general grandioseness of the story. Acting is adequate; the performers do the best they can with what they are given. It is not, however, as exceptional as some would have you believe.
A good example is the one-dimensional character of Magua. Wes Studi's portrayal is fine, but his character is only hateful. He does not change at all througout the film, and he has but one motivation. The conniving and treachery his character engages in is interesting, but the psyche of Magua is boring. Another example is Major Heyward (Steven Waddington). Throughout the movie he is an enemy who dislikes Nathaniel (Daniel Day-Lewis) because he is taking his love, Cora Munro (Madeline Stowe). In a final scene he suddenly decides to offer his life to Hurons so that the two can be together. Perhaps they had meant to develop this character's change of heart better, but the fact is that they didn't.
As stated earlier, "The Last of the Mohicans" is not a bad movie. It is fun to watch, with exciting fight scenes and moving romantic moments. But the good is balanced with the bad, and it cannot be the perfect movie everyone would like it to be. I give "The Last of the Mohicans" 2.5 stars overall, and recommend seeing it only if you have nothing better to do.
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