Re: The Grey Hair

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Posted by Champ on January 19, 1999 at 22:39:32:

In Reply to: Re: The Grey Hair posted by Elaine on January 19, 1999 at 19:44:52:

Champ wrote:
: : The more likely scenerio though is that he led a contingent of British Regulars augmented by a party of Rangers & a sizeable party of Mohawks. This was indeed very common in both the F&I War and the Revolution.
: : He was probably the ranking officer of this composite force, and as such was the "Father" of the raid upon Magua's village.

: : Great discussion :-)

: : "Champ"
: : [the Cherokee Ranger]

Elaine wrote:
: Having arrived in the American colonies in 1756, it is doubtful that Munro/Monro really had the opportunity to arouse such vengeance from the Huron or to have led a contingent of British, Rangers, and Mohawks against an enemy village. It was certainly not Munro (historically speaking) who could have attacked Magua's village. What had happened to Magua's village had occurred quite some time before Col. Munro's arrival. He had spent time as a Mohawk slave and then eventually became "blood-brother" to the Mohawk.

: As for Johnson ... Victoria's composite character can be supported or strengthened (not confirmed) by several inclusions that Mann chose. The use of Hendrick's quote by Ongewascone, Magua's long simmering hatred of 'Munro', Munro's obscurity & recent arrival, the changed spelling (courtesy of Cooper) of Munro's name, and Mann's insistence on referring to Chief Joseph Brant's holdings. This last thing has never made sense to me. The quote & Magua's vengeance can be as simple as cinematic effect. Perhaps MM liked the effect of Hendrick's words. But Brant? Why?

: Yes, Victoria has raised an intriguing possibility.

: Elaine

>>Siyo Elaine,

After having my own dealings with Hollywood producer/director screenwriter types, the one thing I've found is that you can never figure them out. I myself have been turning blue in the face, trying to get them to change certain scenes for authenticity sake, yet even when they said they would, its still in the script!
They'll take liberties with history for the sake of dramatic effect.
I would hazard a guess that Mann selected Brant because, to the average movie goer, Brant's name is both more recognizable & has more effect to it than "Chief Hendricks field", eh? ;-)
They also will have lapses in screenwriting with everything in its historic dis-order [again I'm dealing with the same thing]...
After going back and reviewing the Magua scenes where he talks about the "Gray Hair", I am even more convinced than before that Munro is the object of Magua's wrath, and not just a "composite" character ["...the Gray Hairs children were under Magua's knife..." & straddling the fallen Munro and refering to him as Gray Hair & threatening to kill *his* children so *his* seed dont last forever, etc]...
The thing to remember is that Mann did not set out to write a history piece, its set against a historical backdrop, but that is where it ends..
We really have no idea how long Magua was a Mohawk slave. It sounds like a long time, but one must remember that Dan'l Boone was captured with the saltmakers at Blue Licks, KY, in February of 1778, by the Shawnee, was taken to Fort Detroit, questioned by Hamilton, and was adopted into the Shawnee [ becoming Chief Blackfish's "son"]; then, after earning their trust, managed to escape and warn Boonesborough of an impending Shawnee assualt by September of that year. All this in a span of aprox. 8 months.
So, in Hollywood terms of "time compression", it is not inconceivable that Magua could've done the same [remember, if children can age 5 yrs during one year on a soap opera, what is a little time captured by the Mohawk? ;-) ]....
The fact is that ONLY Mann can give us the answers, for only he knows what he had in mind [wouldnt it be interesting to ask him?]...
As intriguing a possibility it is, I think way too much is being read into the Munro/Magua storyline.
Knowing the Hollywood process & mind thought, its not as complex as we're trying to make it out to be.


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