Re: Do we Really Hate Magua???

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Posted by Gayle on July 27, 1998 at 10:12:56:

In Reply to: Do we Really Hate Magua??? posted by ann on July 26, 1998 at 20:20:54:

: In a post below, Vita asks why do we hate Magua....when his children were killed by Col. Munro?? truth, I only hated Magua at the end when he brutally killed one of the heroes....for most of the movie, after hearing Magua explain his reason for being "twisted" I felt in a state of suspension as far as Magua was concerned....knowing the sad history of the native americans, my eyes started to open and I became curious to find out what actually happened to them following the French & Indian War. This is another reason the movie is of above average quality for most Hollywood products. It causes one to think about history's unfolding events. Wouldn't it be wonderful if all the billions of $s spent on movies each yr. could be funneled into those that teach us, move us, cause us to see things in a new way. That rarely happens with the "crap" (excuse my language, but that's what it is) contained in most cinemas today. I believe Harry Truman's words say it all--"the only thing new in the world, is the history we don't know."..........there, I feel better after getting all that out:o)...ann


Really good rumination on the relations of the characters and American history! Putting aside the requirement of every good adventure story to have a villain, Cooper gave us Magua as an example of an Indian who had been evicted from his own tribe because of his traitorous tendencies and who was useful to Montcalm for those very tendencies. Magua was an Indian who had no loyalties to anyone but himself. He hated everybody equally. Therefore he could be bought by the highest bidder for acts of treachery by Indians or white men alike. Others in the book, such as Chingachgook, suffered equal insults and injuries, but maintained a sense of dignity and principle and rose above it all. Magua just kept digging himself in deeper. An attitude like his makes him useful to the unprincipled, but hardly inspires empathy or respect for him as a human being.


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