MOHAWK

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Mohawk Cover I'm sure some of you out there look upon the Mohawk as a type of hairstyle you can wear in a punk-like fashion. But it's not you know. It can be much-much more than that. It can also be a 80 minute movie made in 1956, Directed by Kurt Neumann; and Starring: Scott Brady, Neville Brand, Rita Gam, with Lori Nelson.


Mohawk : The Film - The Poster


THE STORY:
Now if you ever thought you've had problems with women, pal, forget about it. I've got some real problems with women. Me. Jonathan Adams (Scott Brady): The dandy artist of a Western fort situated somewhere in the Wild West. All because I've fallen in love with an alternate type of a gal.

Hey! Don't get the wrong idea. I'm not referring to my recently arrived fiancée, Cynthia Stanhope (Lori Nelson). She's a little off with me at the moment, due to the fact she has caught me in a somewhat compromising position with a comely-lass called Greta (Allison Hayes).

Who I'm actually referring to, folks, is a rather well-built Native-American lady that's a member of the Mohawk tribe.

Yeah. Straight up! Onida (Rita Gam) is her name. And I first bumped into her when she and her clan attempted to raid our fort for munitions. Granted, I didn't aide her with this devilish scheme one little bit. But what I did instead, is help Onida escape, and got to know her over a couple of days once her clan kidnapped me, and we fell in love.  

Still. That's most probably why what next transpires all goes south when Captain Langley (John Hudson) starts wondering why I'm missing. As peace is sealed in blood - war-paint is smeared in mud - a traitor doesn't see the light - and a big bloody battle turns out alright on the night. 




THE REVIEW:
Now I've got to be honest with you, folks, I wasn't expecting very much when I first sat down and watched, 'Mohawk'. For the life of me, I thought that this movie was going to be your usual 'Cowboys and Indians' type of affair. Where 'Mister America' kicks Navaho ass for the sake of truth, justice, and all of that sort of thing.

Mohawk Film Poster
But no. In part I was wrong. Very-very wrong. In essence, this flick is about how a lustful artist finds true love in the most unlikeliest of places -- an Indian tribe -- set in a western idiom of a marshalled fort.  Furthermore, it's also about how greed and fear can corrupt a society, and it relays this subject matter in a very clear and concise fashion.

Yeah. I kid you not. Not once in this film are peoples true motives never clearly defined. You know that the women care for the artist by what they say and by what they do. Plus you know who the good-guys are and who the bad-guys are for the very same reason.

Granted, not everything in 'Mohawk' smells of roses and daffodils. On occasion the structure of the overall story did lag or jolt amidst certain 'character building' and 'action' scenes. Plus I wasn't too keen on how some of the 'white actors' had to 'darken up' to play Native Americans. Or how certain sets looked like actual film sets too.


Rita Gam plays an Indian in Mohawk


Mohawk French Film Poster
Apart from that that though -- nah! -- this was one very fun-pact film. Cause it was full of history, personality, and had a very timely way of conveying a poignant message without any major hick-ups along the way.

Here. Check out these filmic-facts for some more information behind this project. (1) '20th Century-Fox' first released this production on the same day KPIC TV began broadcasting in Roseburg -- the 1st of April, 1956. (2) Loosely translated, this project was entitled 'Tomahawk' in Spain; 'Fiery Torrent' in Greece; and 'The Great Indian Attack' in Sweden. (3) The tagline used to promote this picture, was, 'Their untamed love spoke louder than war drums!'. (4) This was the third to last flick co-produced by 'Edward L. Alperson Productions'. They produced eight films in total throughout their five years existence. (5) For some unexplained reason quite a bit of this movie contains footage from the John Ford 1939 Western, 'Drums Along the Mohawk'. (6) Maurice Geraghty, who was one of the two screenwriters assigned to this flick, also penned the first feature film Elvis Presley starred in -- 'Love Me Tender' -- released in 1956. (7) This movie was either shot at Republic Studios, Hollywood, or on location in Ray Corrigan Ranch, Simi Valley, California. (8) After this production was unleashed, Scott Brady starred in the crime drama, 'Terror at Midnight'; Rita Gam starred in the western, 'Sierra Baron'; and Neville Brand played Butch Cassidy in the pseudo bio-pic, 'The Three Outlaws'.


Scott Brady and Allison Hayes in Mohawk


Now before I drift off into reviewer-land, folks, I would just like to surmise two political questions 'Mohawk' inadvertently poses. Firstly, if America is the land of the free, why did certain Americans -- and I do only mean certain Americans -- feel the need to steal someone else's land for the sake of profit and loss? And secondly, if this is the case, did they stop there, or did they then continue to do this to other countries under their watchful eye?

Hmmm. Don't you agree that this is food for thought, dear reader? Just like this movie in fact. This great-great movie that's both well acted and well told. No hold bard.

Nuff said.

THE RATING: B