on February 4, 2014
Thankfully Michael Mann has revisited his classic movie and reedited (restored) it to a version very close to the original theatrical release. The directors edit available on DVD in North America was altered too significantly and completely unnecessary. It was done at a time when director's cuts were considered good marketing. The only original theatrical version on DVD was the Region 2 disc available in the UK. There are only minor revisions on this Blu-ray from the original and can be considered a slight (and only slight) improvement. What they do not do is alter the vision or enjoyment of the original edit. The image quality is outstanding with vibrant colors and amazing detail (the soldiers uniforms really stand out in all their splendor). The night scenes do appear quite dark at times making the movie a better view in a dark room or at night. For the fans of this picture...after a 22 year wait.....you can finally enjoy this movie as it was originally conceived and in the best quality ever.
I agree. Daniel Day-Lewis is considered to be the best actor of our time. He was excellent in this movie that takes place during the French/English/native American war in the mid-1700's. Based on the book by James Fenimore Cooper, the story powerfully comes to life with battle scenes, brilliant portrayals of life on the American frontier and stunning scenery. In the midst of the fast-paced action and the terrific emotional impact of this movie, there is a passionate love story between Hawkeye (played by Day-Lewis), adopted son of the Mohicans and Cora, an aristocratic daughter (played by Madeleine Stowe) of a British Colonel.
This movie was released in 1992, before love was interpreted as "sex" in many movies that are produced today. Yet, the love between Hawkeye and Cora is considered by many to be the most passionate portrayed in any movie that's been made. I would agree with that, especially in one scene. No nudity. No sex. No offensive "language".
How accurate this story is to the time presented, I can't say. I haven't done any research on that subject. I'm content to enjoy this movie on its own merit. There is violence and parents would have to decide at what age their children would be able to see this movie without being adversely affected.
It is 1557 a confusing time with the French verses the English and the various Indian tribes taking sides. There are innocent settlers just looking to be free caught up in the conflict.
A small contingent of British are escorting two daughters Cora Munro (Madeleine Stowe) and Alice (Jodhi May) of a British colonel to a near by fort. They are betrayed and three trappers come to the rescue thus setting the story of the "last of the Mohicans" begins.
I do not want to go into details as it will undermine the surprises. Let's just say you will not be disappointed.
This story is based on the 1936 screen play and embellished to a full movie. The scenery is breath taking. One item you can spot right off is that the people in buck skins blend into the back ground; however the British, French and colonel's daughters conspicuously stand out.
Many of the scenes are also surrealistic and have an ethereal feel. This combined with such songs as "I will find you" in the back ground lure you into a timeless feeing. Even at the end of the story you are waiting for more.
As with most films today there are many versions. And different media. Be sure to find the one that suits you best. If you can not find a domestic version do not settle for less; you may want to invest in a region free player or convert the media using software readily found on the internet.
on June 20, 2004
This is a wonderful movie, and I can't say enough about it.
I first seen this movie when I was in high school. I remember my boyfriend forcing me to see this film. I complained during the whole ride to the theater. But, after the first ten minutes I was hooked like a fish.
The haunting, visual landscapes are breathtaking, Daniel Day-Lewis is wonderful, and the secondary characters are very good. Essentially, this is a story of change. The Last Mohican represents a changing of lives and cultures. Additionally, the story of the French-Indian war is moving.
I cannot list a full synopsis of the movie because there are so many different back stories and themes. There is love, intrigue, deciet, family values, war, and death...and all of it is rolled into one.
Everything about this movie is fantastic and very moving. You need to see it for yourself to see what I am talking about. Or, you can listen to the some of the reviewer's recommendations that say this movie is boring and long.
I won't kid you there is some slow points, but this isn't an all out action flick.
Ultimately, this movie is for people who love real, moving movies.
on February 1, 2004
After reading many of the horrified reviews of the "director's cut" DVD version, one would expect a major chop job akin to what happened to Peckinpah's films in the 1970s, a major mutilation of a masterpiece.
Calm down. It's nothing of the kind. Having been a fan of this film since its original release, and having watched the VHS version a couple of times a year since it came out, I had a hard time catching all the changes on the DVD, because most of them are so minor. Some are just a few seconds long. Some are improvements (the extended fort battle, the end of the surrender negotiations, the elimination of some trite and anachronistic wisecracks), others don't matter or are unfortunate (Chingachgook's speech at the end, the elimination of the Clannad song). Overall, especially if you are not intimately familiar with it, you are watching the same movie as on VHS.
My only complaint is technical: The color and brightness are not especially well balanced; some shade or night scenes require adjusting your TV temporarily. And the absence of special features is disappointing.
on May 9, 2011
Just a heads up to anyone buying this blu ray that you may encounter problems.
I've tried it with both a Sony BDP-S570 and BDP-S770 and could not get the disc to work with either player.
Despite having tried around 20 times, the disc usually would show either nothing on screen, or only the first screen (white text on black background). Once I got a screen with white text on red background explaining my player was not updated, but both players have the latest firmware.
Every time the counter display on the player simply shows hyphens (-- -- -- --) and the disc/player freezes.
Haven't been able to find any other reports of issues with this disc or those Sony players, but until I'm able to get another copy to work, just be aware in case you also encounter this problem.
on January 10, 2015
Blu-Ray (mine anyway) is NOT as bad as the DVD!
OK, the scenes are a bit darker and lower lustre (one of the few movies where I felt compelled to both boost my TV's brightness settings and up the colour intensity, both adjustments were well within my (Samsung LED) TV's adjustment capabilities, the net result was only a somewhat lower quality picture, a minor quibble -- the sound's fantastic!), BUT the missing dialogue bit(s) much bemoaned here [at the least the "in your case, I'd make an exception"] in the Blu-Ray edition I purchased last week was/were RESTORED.
The UPC code was (on the original artwork) 0 24543 65788 0 80, but a replacement UPC code (of 0 24543 97859 0 50) was stuck over that one (obtained at Walmart $7.96, and also had a white cardboard sleeve over the shrinkwrapped disc container]. Perhaps there are different Blu-Ray editions out there, in any event I'm so far very pleased with this version. Of course, it would be terrific if Blu-Ray viewers were simply given the conventional choice (of theatrical vs Director's Cut), but for me this suffices (and, I note the Amazon.ca price is now under $5).
I've the VHS and DVD versions to compare with this one, and am only partway into the Blu-Ray edition just now.
on January 26, 2004
An excellent adaptation of the classic James Fenimore Cooper novel, The Last of the Mohicans is a truly powerful movie of love and the perpetual struggle for survival and freedom on the American Frontier (northern New York) of the 1750s. I think that this film succeeds in capturing the spirit of the era, a time when the British control over the Americas was beginning to crumble, and the French were making one last attempt--which would ultimately end in failure--to exert its influence in the region. Important in the movie is the manner in which the Indians are portrayed, as proud, dignified peoples who were struggling to maintain their cultures while caught in the powerful tide of European encroachment. All to often, Indians have been unjustly and quite lamentably portrayed in the movies, and such a sympathetic and seemingly quite accurate portrayal is refreshing. As always, though, in terms of historical accuracy in terms of plot and chronology, the movie is not to be trusted, as indeed can be said for the book as well.
on January 6, 2004
Wow. Let's hear it for Michael Mann!
The most beautifully portrayed and directed historical film of 1992, Michael Mann's "The Last of the Mohicans" carries an uneraseable memory in 20th Century Fox's motion picture industry. Even the music score theme throughout the film was appropriate and especially breathtaking at the starting opening title.
LOTM helps us to take a deeper look into the historical struggles of war-torn families in the latter years of the 17th Century, as well as show the emotion that just seems to gush from the widescreen. Not only does it relay war facts of the past, but it shows how it affected all individuals involved.
Based on the novel by James Fenimore Cooper, the main star Daniel Day-Lewis plays the adopted son Hawkeye, who was raised by the last of a vanishing people. And the lovely and gorgeous Madeleine Stowe plays as Cora, one of the British general's two daughters, who would later meet Hawkeye and fall in love.
Being trained in combat as an Indian, Hawkeye helps his "father and brother" fight off the many war parties/battles (indians who at the time were allies to the French) that swept New England against the British.
The film LOTM overflows with violent war action, suspense, romance, and obviously the struggle for survival beginning in the year 1757. It was a time when you were on one side or the other, but never neutral ground. If you refused to accept being drafted, you were labeled a coward and you deserved to die. Fight or die was the heartbeat of the age, and you fell under one category or the other.
But as mentioned above, this timeless epic was not just about war, but about life, love, and freedom. It shows us what our ancestors and forefathers fought for that we might enjoy our nation's independence.
*This motion picture was rated R for graphic war violence. Please note this restriction to children under the age of 17, who should be attended by an adult parent or other guardian. Available on VHS and DVD in widescreen format.
Take it home today.
on December 24, 2003
Having read some of the reviews of the director's cut DVD, I'm glad I've only seen the original theatrical version of the movie which is the same as the VHS. I was equally blessed to get a widescreen version on VHS which preserves the wonderful cinematography of the film with its breathtaking scenery of North Carolina. The Last of the Mohicans is a beautiful story and it is translated well into film by director Michael Mann. Why he decided to revisit this well-received effort and brutalize it in a "director's cut" is beyond me. Maybe he thought he could make a few more bucks from a special edition?
That aside, this is a movie that will please both men and women who love the thrill of high adventure and romance. Daniel Day-Lewis is perfectly cast as the novel's Hawkeye, the adopted white son of a Mohican and the bridge between that dying Indian culture and the European settlers of the new world. Together with his father Chingachgook (Russell Means) and brother Uncus (Eric Schweig), Hawkeye lives as a hunter and wanderer with some familiarity and friendship with the scattered British settlers on the western frontier of the colonies.
The beautiful Cora Munro (Madeleine Stowe) and her sister Alice (Jodhi May) enter the story as daughters of a British colonel in command of Fort William Henry. They are escorted to visit their father by a young British officer and squad of soldiers but are betrayed by their Indian scout Magua (Wes Studi), who it turns out had revenge on his mind all along. I was glad they actually explained Magua's motivations later in the plot. Just as the company of Brits is being slaughtered by Hurons, Hawkwye and his companions intervene and save the women and the officer. They persuade Hawkeye to take them to the fort. Despite Cora's horror at Hawkeye's necessary violence and seeming lack of compassion, there is instant chemistry between these two characters which is only really played out later.
Of the travails this band of travelers endures over the course of the plot, the highlight must surely be the final battle on the clifftop recognized by the Amazon reviewer and I'm sure many others who love this movie. The tense buildup, the longing for things to turn out well, the unspoken love (between Alice and Uncus), and even the brutality all tug at your heart and bring tears to your eyes. The haunting music is an integral part of carrying the emotion of this scene. It's one of my all-time favorite scenes in movies.
This film was interesting in providing a little history of the Anglo-French war over the colonies and the way the Indian tribes allied themselves, but its greater value lies in telling a tale of chivalry, bravery, passion and sacrifice. I hope everyone gets a chance to see it.