Search - The Great Indian Wars: 1540-1890 on DVD

The Great Indian Wars: 1540-1890
The Great Indian Wars 1540-1890
Genres: Documentary
NR     2005     3hr 55min

The year 1540 was a crucial turning point in American history. The Great Indian Wars were incited by Francisco Vazquez de Coronado when his expedition to the Great Plains launched the inevitable 350 year struggle between ...  more »


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Movie Details

Genres: Documentary
Sub-Genres: Documentary
Studio: Bci / Eclipse
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 10/18/2005
Original Release Date: 01/01/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2005
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 3hr 55min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 3
SwapaDVD Credits: 3
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
Edition: Box set
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Absurd, irresponsible, amatuer, uneducated
Douglas K. Miller | Minneapolis, MN | 01/17/2006
(1 out of 5 stars)

"This film was incredibly disappointing considering the relative deficiency of film work in this field. This DVD set is historically irresponsible in a number of ways, for example, the film continually shows a picture of Crazy Horse when referring to him, but most anyone with even a cursory knowledge of American Indian History knows Crazy Horse was never photographed. Story-lines are vague. Figures and numbers offered always favor the American Military. Indians depicted in live-action re-creations constantly are shown as a group, brutally beating American soldiers. Wounded Knee is reffered to as the "last great battle." The Sand Creek massacre is borderline depicted as being deserved. Ethically debateable American military leaders are depicted in a heroic light.
This film set is designed for White American males who get excited about old westerns that depict Indians as savage idiots. If this set was ever used in a classroom I only hope it would serve as an example of what is wrong with America's handling of Indian History.
No Indian people were interviewed for this film. No Indian people were used in re-enactments. No reputable scholars appear in the film. The Pro-American white men that are interviewed in the film are people I have never heard of in all my years as an Indian History scholar. Id really like to know what the film-maker's sources were for their research. The film contributes nothing relevant or new to the field. If you are a scholar in the field of 19th Century and American Indian History, stay away from this film unless you are looking for laughs or an opportunity to degrade your knowledge."
The Truth About the Indian Wars
Packer Backer | 02/18/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Revisionists and White history supporters beware, this DVD series on America's Indian Wars tells it like it really was in the bad old days of the wild west. Atrocities on both sides, hereoes and butchers on both sides. For too long Americans have been fed pap - the Indians were terrorists and the Cavalry heroes and vice versa. How wonderful to find a series that gives the fair and balanced truth of what really happened in America's fight for the west. Thanks to the experts - Greg Michno and Jeremy Bloom, men who have spent years investigating the battles of the Plains Indians war - the reality of what happended is finally known. Curl up with this DVD this winter and amaze your friends with the facts of the Indian Wars instead of the BS. Teacher from Green Bay, WI."
Really Quite Decent
R. Stout | Minnesota, USA | 06/13/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This collection will probably hold little new to those already familiar with Native American history, but such people are sadly few and far between these days. I picked this set up on a whim, due largely to its rock-bottom price and nicely constructed packaging. And I must say, I've been pleasantly surprised. No, the reenactments are not terribly high budget, but the invective elicited from other reviewers seems largely unmerited.

No, the Native tribes are not depicted as sub-human savages, brutes or monsters. But what seems to anger some people is that the Whites are not dehumanized either. The documentaries take great pains to show the motivations, strengths, heroes, villains, foibles, massacres, and misunderstandings on both sides. Both Whites and Natives attack civilians. Both Whites and Native break treaties. Both Whites and Natives attempt to learn from one another and to live in peace. Both White and Natives engage in raiding, conquest, and slave trade. Meanwhile, fair attention is paid to other players, such as the famous and hard-fighting Buffalo Soldiers. Some seem aghast at the fact that this program points out roughly equal numbers of casualties on both sides in the Indian Wars, as if this robbed Native tribes of their victimhood. I just saw it as evidence that the Natives were skilled, brave warriors, who were far more effective against the US military over the years than we are often led to believe.

Previously, many narratives of the Indian Wars portrayed Euro-Americans as chivalrous and noble, while Natives were violent and untrustworthy. In the last generation, that image has been turned on its head. It seems that whenever a human society encounters another radically different culture, the only way that society can make sense of the other is to either deify them or to demonize them. We can see strangers as angels or devils, but not as people. For whatever flaws it has, this set treats both sides as human, both flawed and beautiful."
Very incorrect and misguided film series
Turtle Heart | Pantelleria | 07/30/2009
(1 out of 5 stars)

"I am an American Indian. I am responsible through ceremonies and the words coming out of my mouth to speak truthfully to my relations. While this film has some useful historical observations, it is in essence a paranoid work of propaganda that takes everybody back rather than forward. The film entirely ignores the struggles in the east and southwest, the west coast and the indigenous tribes (Hopi) of the southwest. it leaves out many things. It substitutes an unrelenting narrative to point the finger at all the bad Indians who stood in the way of the United States government. Custer is praised. The Indians were all so very cruel to their captives..... It parades the Indians out as freaks and monsters who deserve all the trouble they get in life. This film is horribly inaccurate and misleading. There is not a single voice of any American Indian dead or alive. the thinking behind this film is very dark, manipulative and incorrect in my view. I have spent more than forty years of my life monitoring, studying and asking questions about the words and images which pass for information about the American Indian. This film series is so retro, it is so unbearably white, which is not a compliment. This film is incorrect in more ways than I have the heart and words to say. In good faith I do say that as an American Indian, and a United States Army Veteran, that this film has a dark agenda. I am deeply sad that it has been made and is being distributed as something factual and historical. I encourage those of you who may know American Indian people to share this film with them and watch their reaction. When will we ever get together and know the real and actual, set us all free truth about these issues?"