This version has many positive points indeed. For one the Indians are real Indians. For two the Indian life style is a lot more realistic than in most other versions and what happens in the films is more credible than in most other versions. It is highly probably that the Indians were a lot more hostile than thought as soon as they understood the English were going and planning to stay, and thus Smith had lied to them and promised their departure whereas he knew it was a lie.
The other side is just as realistic. The English die like flies the first year of diseases, cold and hunger, and also because of the Indians but this vision of the English is also realistic in the extreme violence they were confronted to and the extreme violence they submitted the Indians to. The Indians tried to overwhelm them with numbers but the English just burnt the villages and killed everyone, burnt the harvests and the crops forcing the Indians to go away or starve before being exterminated. The film is even clear about the intention of pushing the Indians away from the very start.
But apart from that realistic dimension of the film, the story itself is an embellished love story that has little to do with what probably really happened. Pocahontas was ten when Smith appeared and not a grown young woman. Her religious position and training is not at all explicated and thus the Indian culture is not at all exploited as a highly spiritual culture. It is reduced to some kind of ritualistic, superstitious, extremely “primitive” behavior and relishing paint and other body adornments.Lire la suite ›