December 29, 2007

Dances with Wolves in film registry

Back to the Future, Bullitt added to National Film RegistryLibrarian of Congress James H. Billington today named 25 motion pictures--classics from every era of American filmmaking-to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress, including "Bullitt," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," Grand Hotel," "Oklahoma!" and "12 Angry Men."

The selections were made as part of a program aimed at preserving the nation's movie heritage. Under the terms of the National Film Preservation Act of 1992, each year the Librarian of Congress, with advice from the National Film Preservation Board, names 25 films to the National Film Registry to be preserved for all time. The films are chosen because they are "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant. This year's selections bring to 475 the number of motion pictures in the registry.

Dances With Wolves (1990)
A personal project for star Kevin Costner, "Dances with Wolves" disproved a reputation Western films had acquired in the latter years of the 20th Century for being money-losers. The film also became the second Western to win the Academy Award for Best Film. The movie presents a fairly simple, intimate story (the quest of a cavalry soldier to get to know a nearby Sioux tribe and his resulting spiritual transformation) in an epic fashion, with sweeping cinematography and a majestic John Barry score. The film marks one of the more sympathetic portraits of Native-American life ever shown in American cinema, and introduced the American public to Lakota Sioux folklore, traditions and language.
Comment:  Are there any other films with Native themes in the registry? Not that I know of.

Now, Voyager, 12 Angry Men, and Close Encounters of the Third Kind should've been in the registry long ago. They're among the top 100 American films, not to mention the top 475.


writerfella said...

Writerfella here --
Huzzah! writerfella long has been an advocate of the intensely personal projects that creative people, by sheer force of personality, accomplish. For this is how writerfella himself ALWAYS has worked. Despite whatever flaws others may indicate, the choice of this film for preservation at least should tell its detractors to re-think their "opinions"...
All Best
Russ Bates

Rob said...

I have no problem noting the flaws in Dances with Wolves while saying it's one of the best Westerns and Native-themed movies ever. I give it an 8.5 of 10.