Posted by Bill R on August 29, 2000 at 19:04:56:
In Reply to: Re: Magua's Villainy posted by Stephanie on August 29, 2000 at 18:24:48:
Good points all, there Stephenie. I hadn't thought about that, and it does explain why Magua softens on the cliff as Alice is about to jump. And it surely explains the rationale for slavery and for the removal of nations from their homes....some went so far as to claim they weren't human like us, they didn't have souls etc, etc. I like that description of Magua's awakening on the cliff.
: As far as killing the Grey Hair's daughters even though they were "innocent", it seems to me that Magua perceived them with that distant "otherness" that is so easy to attribute to enemies, especially of a different race. They(enemies) tend to take on a quality of less-than-humanness. If they lose their human qualities, then destroying them is as easy on one's conscience as stepping on a bug. Perhaps that's what we see in Magua's eyes during the cliff scene before Alice jumps; something softens in his face and perhaps what has happened is that he has finally seen her as a person, a real human with feelings just like him. But by then it was too late.
: Maybe that feeling of "otherness" is what made Indian removal, and even black slavery, easier on the white peoples' consciences.
: Just some thoughts..,
: : : :
: : : : : Amen Sister Marcia! Psssst..Eric who? (Now we both better duck and head for the hills!!)
: : : : : ((grins))...Jeri
: : : : ~~~~~~~~~~~~
: : : : Wooooooohoooooooooooo! You REALLY like to live dangerously, doncha? hehe
: : : : MMMM
: : : Yup, Magua's my MAN! The more I watch the movie, the more I swing into his camp. And, I fully agree with your comments on Wes Studi's performance. He was masterful. Somehow, I could never get into hating him like I did way back when I read the book (we are talking in my preppy junior high years, back when books were still written on papyrus and rolled! :)) Back then, man, he was evil evil evil. Now, after Studi's performance, I could almost have held Gray Hair down while Wes did the deed. Maybe I am just not the altruistic, impressionable kid I used to be. All I can say is, having had children of my own, were somebody to do what they did to his family and then take me captive......make me slave....yup. I would burn inside until I had avenged, ya know? Plus, though they paint Col Munro as a dutiful, honor bound officer, they also paint him as ruthless to those who get in the way of his "duty" to "defeat France"....Hawkeye as good example. So.....I kinda lean more toward sympathy for Magua than Col Munro....but maybe that was part of Michael Mann's intent? Not sure I would go so far in my vengeance as to want to "wipe his seed" from the earth though....I guess I still carry a lotta 20th century mores and sense of fairness/justice in my heart. I see the girls as innocents.....not involved in the actions that led to Magua's loss. When Palestinians were blowing up busses of Israeli school kids, it never entered my mind to repay that with blowing up a bus full of Palestinian kids. Raid the terrorist training camps and enclaves, sure.
: : : That's different. Just an example of how we see things differently today than 300 years ago perhaps.
: : : But you girls aren't talking just Magua here are you? You are also perhaps evaluating hunkiness between Wes Studi and Eric Schweig? Can't comment on that, don't have the right gender!!!
: : : Bill R
: : ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
: : I think that you hit the nail on the head Bill. If you consider losing your family, then you can totally understand his motives. And given the time that Magua had to allow his anger to fester and grow, one can see quite clearly how his persona came to be. It is harder to understand killing the children of one's enemy, but our attitudes to 'continuing the family name' have changed somewhat. It is no longer such a priority to produce a male heir or for that matter to produce children. In former times, your bloodline was all important. Of course, the other issue is that Magua wanted Munro to feel the pain that he himself had felt, hence his telling Munro before he killed him, that Munros daughters would also be killed.
: : Aside from all of that, I think that Magua was spoiling for a fight! He perceived himself as a warrior and warriors are pretty useless if they don't have a battle.
: : As for Wes - well, what a guy! I saw him in a movie recently on tv, I can't remember the name of it now, a fairly recent 'underwater monster' movie! It was weird seeing him in modern dress and looking so different, but there is no doubt about his acting abilities - lets just hope that a few more casting directors think the same way that we all do!
: : Adele
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