Man Called Horse

A Man Called Horse

4.5 4
Director: Elliot Silverstein

Cast: Elliot Silverstein, Richard Harris, Judith Anderson, Jean Gascon


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A Man Called Horse stars Richard Harris as Lord John Morgan, an English peer cast somewhat adrift in the American West. Captured by Sioux Indians, Lord Morgan is at first targeted for quick extinction, but the tribesmen sense that he is worthy of survival. The Englishman passes many of the necessary tests that will permit him to


A Man Called Horse stars Richard Harris as Lord John Morgan, an English peer cast somewhat adrift in the American West. Captured by Sioux Indians, Lord Morgan is at first targeted for quick extinction, but the tribesmen sense that he is worthy of survival. The Englishman passes many of the necessary tests that will permit him to become a member of the tribe, the most grueling of which (and the one used most extensively in the film's advertising) is the Sun Vow Initiation. That's where his lordship is hung from the roof of a huge teepee with hooks through his pectoral muscles. Much of the dialogue is spoken in the Sioux language, though the film's much-vaunted "historical accuracy" is not altogether consistent, as witnessed by the casting of British stage luminary Judith Anderson as Sioux woman Buffalo Cow Head. A Man Called Horse was a solid piece of filmcraft and proved successful enough to warrant two sequels.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
A film that seems to have provided some inspiration for Dances with Wolves, A Man Called Horse has dated somewhat over the years but is still noteworthy for the exceptionally powerful performance that is at its center. As the titular character, Richard Harris gives a performance that is startling in its intensity and clarity. It's true that some of the peculiarities -- some might call them mannerisms -- that are part of the actor's individual style are still present, including a tendency to go from very quiet to very loud with no stops in between. But most of these characteristics are kept in tight control, and even when used, they are in service to the character and the script. More importantly, Harris truly lives the character that he is playing, making quite real, believable, and moving every moment of his journey. It's an extraordinary piece of acting, and it is the glue that holds Horse together. Despite Harris, many may find Horse rough going, not the least because of its sometimes graphic nature -- particularly in the Sun Vow Initiation section, which is extremely painful yet undeniably powerful. Some may also find that Horse doesn't always succeed at what it sets out to do, which is to present a man assimilating into another culture, but to do so without passing judgment on either culture. It's a noble attempt, but it doesn't quite work, possibly because a film of this sort almost has to favor the character who is "outside" the culture. Still, it doesn't help that the Indian characters are not as fleshed out as they might be; this is especially true of the woman Horse takes as a wife, who seems to exist solely as a romantic creature with no other dimension. Things are not helped by dialogue in a native tongue that is not translated for much of the film. This adds to the "alienated" feeling, but it also makes the characters less comprehensible to the audience. Finally, some viewers will find the unfortunate "psychedelic" moments entirely too dated and distracting. But despite its flaws, A Man Called Horse is a gripping movie that features an unforgettable star turn.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby Surround, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Closed Caption; [None specified]

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Richard Harris John Morgan
Judith Anderson Buffalo Cow Head
Jean Gascon Batise
Manu Tupou Yellow Hand
Corinna Tsopei Running Deer
Dub Taylor Joe, White Hunter
William Jordan Bent
Edward Little Sky Black Eagle
Lina Marin Thorn Rose
Tamara Garina Elk Woman
Michael Baseleon He-Wolf
Manuel Padilla Leaping Buck
Iron Eyes Cody Medicine Man, who performed Sun Vow Ritual
Terry J. Leonard Striking Bear
James Gammon Ed
Stanford Howard Actor
Sioux Indians of Rosebud Reservation Actor
Frank Raiter Warrior

Technical Credits
Elliot Silverstein Director
Philip W. Anderson Editor
Phil Barber Art Director
Dennis Lynton Clark Production Designer
Richard Cobos Makeup
Jack de Witt Screenwriter
Frederico Farfan Special Effects
Gene Fowler Editor
Frank Griffin Makeup
Lynn H. Guthrie Asst. Director
Robert B. Hauser Cinematographer
Sandy Howard Producer
Richard La Motte Costumes/Costume Designer
Terry J. Leonard Stunts
Eddie Marks Costumes/Costume Designer
Jack Martell Costumes/Costume Designer
Terry Morse Asst. Director
Ted Parvin Costumes/Costume Designer
Leonard Rosenman Score Composer
Tim Smyth Special Effects

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Captured
2. Warriors Return
3. Attempted Escape
4. "I Am a Man"
5. A Lot to Learn
6. Survival
7. Proving Loyalty
8. Marriage Tests
9. The Union
10. Marital Bliss
11. Battle
12. New Freedom

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A Man Called Horse 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Richard Harris is as excellent as always in this wonderful movie!!! See the sequells listed below And go to my Richard Harris Web Page!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a great movie, because they spoke the actual Language of that Native American tribe. They did a great job on choosing the actors for this movie. I thought putting in all of those actors and looking into the history books for the info was the best idea in the world. The battles in this movie where great and there were virtualy no flaws in this movie. I think if the producer, writer, and director of this movie were to make another movie i would be sure to go see it in theaters and buy it on DVD. Well there is my two cents so e-mail me if you want more input on this movie. So over all this is one of the best movies I have ever seen.
Guest More than 1 year ago
An amazing movie! I felt as if I was there!!! The language spoken is unbelivable-a truly uplifting tale....I recommend it to everyone. I think It should have won SOME kind of award...I don't really follow the awards..sorry.. Great movie...
Guest More than 1 year ago
Although the natives Are speaking the correct language, during the most serious parts of the movie,the Sioux are telling dirty jokes and are making fun of each other. Also, some of the ceremonies are (rightfully) changed against exploitation of their true significance