Posted at 12.10.2018
In this documentary, Reel Injun, by Neil Gemstone, the director explores how Native AMERICANS were cured and shown in advertising from the first 20th century for this. The documentary explores the negative stereotypes and mistreatment Local North Americans encountered. The amount of negative depictions and inaccurate stereotypes about Natives in film played out a significant role in the hatred towards Local People, and strengthened the stigmatized views that mainstream contemporary society already had towards them. As a result, their confidence had been destroyed and their self-identity lost, as their ideas of who they truly were as people have been discontinued. This documentary can be an exploration of how the portrayals and treatment of Natives, not only in film, but also in true to life, progressed as time passes.
Neil Diamond begins his film by checking out the origins of Native stereotyping in videos. In early motion pictures, Natives were always portrayed with more of any positive image as opposed to a negative one. This is shown in films such as "The Silent Adversary, " where esteem was presented with for just how of Native tribes and showed Natives as "noble savages, who have been fearless and courageous warriors that were in sync with character. " The movie highlighted real Native stars such as Main Buffalo Child Long Lance, who performed as a hunter in the film, and was considered one of the most noble Natives at that time. Even though the film consisted of positive stereotypes, these same stereotypes were ones that portrayed Local AMERICANS as "less than human, " in other words, as second-class individuals. Even though Natives sustained to succumb to the motives of the White man, "The Silent Enemy, " confirmed them as gentle individuals that persisted to show admiration for others, never surrendering or positioning a grudge, but instead, wanting to stay in a peaceful coexistence with White people. However, the film did not become a box-office success; society was uninterested in films that confirmed the ways Natives resided their lives, and were more fixated on comedic films, beautiful love reviews, and action stuffed adventure testimonies. People wished to get away from their own lives, and wanted to hop into something that made them feel happy; nobody wanted to pay for a film that evoked pain and confirmed the mistreatment of Natives, when they could purchase a movie that made them feel entertained. Before videos veered off into depicting Natives as brutal savages, you can say that this movie had a major effect on the examination of Natives throughout history.
Following these "positive" stereotypical movies, Western videos became typical. A more pronounced negative portrayal of Local North Americans arose, and people loved discovering the Natives become concentrate on practice for cowboys. Inside the 1930's and 1940's, the fantastic Depression had considered a toll on people; they were looking for an "enemy, " and it just so took place that Natives were their ragdolls for anger. Indigenous people began to become severely disrespected and inaccurately depicted in films. Directors were going up to now that they began showing Natives speaking a sort of "Tonto" talk, where English is played out backwards, making Indigenous people appear to be uneducated, uncivilized and most significantly, "brutal savages;" as opposed to the "noble savages" they were once shown as. Possibly the biggest movie to ever before destroy a complete culture's life-style and reduce it to only thought, would be "Stage Mentor. " Released in 1939, the film shows several White travelers and their journey across the Outdoors Western world towards New Mexico. The travelers were very fearful to be violently ambushed by "savage" Natives, who are made out to be unethical and merciless. The film stars cowboy professional John Wayne, an extremely patriotic American which makes Native people not only his practice focuses on, but makes them appear like ruthless, brutal savages who have no regard for human life and are out to "get" the People in america. The film was so discriminatory towards Native North Americans which it made the Natives themselves think that they ought to distance themselves of their own culture, not limited to fear of being targeted, but because they had started to believe in these falsely concocted stereotypes. Level Trainer along with many other films at that time, caused a whole lot of Native AMERICANS to reduce their sense of personality, and because of this, transformed them towards drug abuse and provoking battles with the societal counterparts. Nonetheless, the assassination of Local persona done by Hollywood, provided the foundation for the extreme habits of Natives in this time around of heightened socio-economic issues.
However, following a few ages of negative depiction in film, Natives were starting to be portrayed positively again. The 1970's for Natives was what one could call a sort of Renaissance period, as it was a major making point in the portrayal of Native North Americans. This era began with "The Occupation of Alcatraz, " in 1969, where around one-hundred Local people occupied Alcatraz island in protest to the government and their land treaties. Alcatraz was always originally sacred Indigenous land, and protestors wanted to choose the land again for the same amount they had been offered for it, which was just a few dollars. The occupation became infamous and people from all over the world took notice, especially the person who later became "The Speech of Alcatraz, " Lakota activist John Trudell. Trudell experienced started a radio show that discussed the explanation for the protest and describing other issues Native people faced in America and the planet. He is known as one of the most influential people involved in the complete escapade, and his occurrence brought an energetic spark to the people's voices. Even though the job of Alcatraz eventually did collapse, it is still widely regarded as a "symbol of Native North American's needs for unity and expert in a "White" America. " Following a attention that Alcatraz gained, two significant things occurred, the "American Indian Movements (AIM)" which aimed to fight against all the false identities, stereotypes and mistreatment Natives confronted in film and in real life, arose; as well as the discharge of Billy Jack in 1971. In essence, Billy Jack "was a representation of a Local action hero, who used violence to enact justice. " The character was half-Indian, and would deal with anyone who disrespected Local people or regulations. He was in essence an embodiment of not only anticipation, but all the angst and anger the 70's helped bring for Native people, and was retaliating for all the negative stereotypes Native people confronted by doing what they cannot, that is, fight against the oppressors.
Reel Injun also stated a challenge that occurred in South Dakota, more specifically, at Wounded Knee, where hundreds of Natives were slaughtered. The government was retaliating for the Challenge of the tiny BigHorn in the later 19th century, and their goal was to fight the Native Americans who had taken a town under its control, in hopes of having the government honor its recently agreed upon terrestrial treaties and privileges that had gone undelivered for so long. Despite the force of america authorities, the Natives continuing to fight and never surrendered, which resulted in the deaths of several men, women and children. In this turmoil, in 1973, North american professional Marlon Brando, well-known for his role within the Godfather, acquired a Indigenous activist called Sacheen Littlefeather boycott the Oscar ceremony by refusing Marlon's Oscar Statuette on his behalf. This is done hoping to protest the common defamation of Native AMERICANS in Hollywood film. Her talk in front of the public dealt with the injustices Natives confronted not only on the big screen, but in real life, more specifically throughout the country and the massacre occurring at Wounded Knee. People saw this speech out of this "hippie" as inspirational, and her message was welcomed for the most part, by applause and wide open arms, which led to a newfound appreciation for Indigenous people. Instantly, being Native was "finished. , " as Americans liked the thought of the "free and spiritual hippie" and drew similarities with Native and "hippie" culture.
Throughout these eighty years roughly, the wide-spread propaganda of Native AMERICANS in Hollywood film was an up and down struggle. As referred to by Neil Gem, the director of Reel Injun, Natives were first portrayed as the "humble and noble savages, " very fastened with aspect and respectful in their coexistence with the "White American. " In fact, the Natives were those that helped these men change into their lives in THE UNITED STATES in the first place, yet in later years, culturally destructive videos such as Stage Coach referred to them as "brutal savages" who proved no mercy and were as ruthless as is possible when torturing these "White folk. " Later of course, this notion came back to where it started as the public had taken notice through the constant lobbying and pushing initiatives of not only Local activists like John Trudell and Sacheen Littlefeather, but Hollywood stars like Marlon Brando as well. American people found that Natives are more than their traditional regalia, with feathers and "face-paint, " somewhat they may be "real" human beings, and that human beings are different and deserve to be cared for equally.