Little Big Man

Little Big Man

4.7 10
Director: Arthur Penn

Cast: Arthur Penn, Dustin Hoffman, Faye Dunaway, Martin Balsam

     
 

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Recounting how the West was won through the eyes of a white man raised as a Native American, Arthur Penn's 1970 adaptation of Thomas Berger's satirical novel was a comic yet stinging allegory about the bloody results of American imperialism. As a misguided 20th-century historian listens, 121-year-old Jack Crabb (Dustin Hoffman) narrates the story of being the only… See more details below

Overview

Recounting how the West was won through the eyes of a white man raised as a Native American, Arthur Penn's 1970 adaptation of Thomas Berger's satirical novel was a comic yet stinging allegory about the bloody results of American imperialism. As a misguided 20th-century historian listens, 121-year-old Jack Crabb (Dustin Hoffman) narrates the story of being the only white survivor of Custer's Last Stand. White orphan Crabb was adopted by the Cheyenne, renamed "Little Big Man," and raised in the ways of the "Human Beings" by paternal mentor Old Lodge Skins (Chief Dan George), accepting non-conformity and living peacefully with nature. Violently thrust into the white world, Jack meets a righteous preacher (Thayer David) and his wife (Faye Dunaway), tries to be a gunfighter under the tutelage of Wild Bill Hickock (Jeff Corey), and gets married. Returned to the Cheyenne by chance, Jack prefers life as a Human Being. The carnage wreaked by the white man in the Washita massacre and the lethal fallout from the egomania of General George A. Custer (Richard Mulligan) at Little Big Horn, however, show Crabb the horrific implications of Old Lodge Skins' sage observation, "There is an endless supply of White Men, but there has always been a limited number of Human Beings."

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Lucia Bozzola
Little Big Man was one of a group of early 1970s Westerns that found a precedent for the atrocities of the Vietnam War in the history of white westward expansion at the expense of Native Americans. In the process, Arthur Penn and screenwriter Calder Willingham take apart the Western itself, sending up myths of white "civilization" and its proper violence while lending a humorous and poignant slant to the mythic "noble savages" -- not to mention casting actual Native American actors. Primed for Western iconoclasm by an ever more vigorous antiwar movement and counterculture, audiences turned Little Big Man into a surprise hit; Chief Dan George garnered a New York Film Critics Circle prize and an Oscar nomination for his performance. One of the most successful of the period's revisionist Westerns, Little Big Man stands as a timely and wittily caustic indictment of western myths and the contemporary legacy of manifest destiny.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/08/2011
UPC:
0097361452142
Original Release:
1970
Rating:
PG13
Source:
Paramount
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
2:19:00
Sales rank:
21,308

Special Features

Theatrical Trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Dustin Hoffman Jack Crabb
Faye Dunaway Mrs. Pendrake
Martin Balsam Merriweather
Richard Mulligan Gen. George A. Custer
Chief Dan George Old Lodge Skins
Jeff Corey Wild Bill Hickok
Kelly Jean Peters Olga
Carol Androsky Caroline
Cal Bellini Younger Bear
Ray Dimas Young Jack Crabb
Alan Howard Adolescent Jack Crabb
Don Brodie Stage Passenger
Leonard George Crow Scout
Herbert Nelson Actor
Bud Cokes Man at Bar
Aimee Eccles Sunshine
Ruben Moreno Shadow that Comes at Night
Steve Shemayne Burns Red In The Sun
William Hickey Historian
James Anderson Sergeant
Jesse Vint Lieutenant
Alan Oppenheimer Major
Thayer David Rev. Silas Pendrake
Phil Kenneally Mr. Kane
Jack Bannon Captain
Jack Mullaney Card Player
Lou Cutell Deacon
M. Emmet Walsh Shotgun Guard
Emily Cho Digging Bear
Helen Verbit Madame
Bert Conway Bartender
Ken Mayer Sergeant
Robert Little Star Little Horse

Technical Credits
Arthur Penn Director,Producer
Dede Allen Editor
Bud Alper Sound/Sound Designer
Dick Smith Special Effects
Logan R. Frazee Special Effects
Angelo P. Graham Art Director,Production Designer
John Paul Hammond Score Composer
Dorothy Jeakins Costumes/Costume Designer
Gene Lasko Producer
Richard Marks Editor
Terry Miles Makeup
Stuart Millar Producer
Mike Moder Asst. Director
Hal Needham Stunts
George R. Nelson Set Decoration/Design
Al Overton Sound/Sound Designer
Richard Portman Sound/Sound Designer
Harry Stradling Cinematographer
Dean Tavoularis Production Designer
Calder Willingham Screenwriter

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