Writer: Michael Mann, Christopher Crowe (Screenplay) James Fenimore Cooper (Novel)
Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Madeleine Stowe, Russell Means, Eric Schweig, Jodhi May, Steven Waddington, Wes Studi
Plot: Three trappers protect a British Colonel’s daughters in the midst of the French and Indian War.
Tagline – The first American hero.
Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Good, but Hard to Follow
Story: The Last of the Mohicans starts in the middle of the French Indian war raging through America we meet trapper Hawkeye (Day-Lewis) who doesn’t want to get involved in the war when the British try to recruit support in the battle. Major Duncan Heywood (Waddington) is preparing to escort the General’s daughters Cora (Stowe) and Alice (May) across the country, hoping he can marry Cora one day. When the group get ambushes, Hawkeye guides them to safety but then finds himself in the middle of the war he was trying to avoid. Hawkeye falls in love with Cora and soon finds himself needing to free himself from the British who treat him like a war criminal even after what he did for the British and continues to do when Cora is in danger.
Thoughts on The Last of the Mohicans
Characters – Hawkeye is the adopted child of an Indian family raised to be one of their greatest trappers, he along with his family would like to stay out of the war, but he gets dragged into the battle after rescuing the British General’s daughters. He shows the strength to lead an army, determination to win a battle and the love it feels for Cora. Cora is the daughter of a British general trapped in a world at war, she becomes the love interest for Hawkeye who spends most of the film trying to rescue her. If I am honest, I found it hard to tell any of the British apart or any of the Indians, which at time made it confusing to follow who was on the good side and bad side.
Performances – Daniel Day-Lewis is good in the leading role, which is something you would have come to expect from him, but his combat scenes don’t seem to click at times. Madeleine Stowe is good to as is the whole cast who are good without being great and not being bad through the film.
Story – The story follows a neutral trapper in the middle of the British and French battling in America who gets caught up in the middle of the war because of his love for a British woman who needs protecting. This does play into moments of history without being anything special if we are being honest, we try to learn more about the history of the early battles in America without us knowing too much going in, we barely learn anything afterwards too.
Action/Adventure/Romance/War – The action while massive on scale can become plenty of well placed battle moments searching for shock value, the romance drives Hawkeye to fight and save during a war backdrop, one he never wanted to be part of.
Settings – The settings show the clash of worlds, the Indian beliefs, the British forts and the French forts which shows us who will be comfortable in different battle situations.
Final Thoughts – This is a film that is filled with praise before I went into it, by the end I found it just to be fine, I wouldn’t consider it a great and in fact not one I would be watching again.
Overall: Overly hyped movie.