Prior to The Last Of The Mohicans, Michael Mann had directed the well-regarded Thief and Manhunter, and was credited (not entirely accurately) for revolutionizing TV as the producer of Miami Vice. But Mann and co-screenwriter Christopher Crowe’s adaptation of a lit-class staple was where Mann really started being regarded as a top-shelf American auteur, with a reputation for perfectionism and for bringing a level of sophistication and artistry to what in other hands could’ve been routine action fare. The Last Of The Mohicans also offered a different look for Daniel Day-Lewis, who back in 1992 was mostly known for prestige dramas, before he played the long-haired, tomahawk-throwing Nathaniel Hawkeye. The combination of Mann’s eye (aided by cinematographer Dante Spinotti) and Day-Lewis’ intensity results in a historical adventure with a vivid look and a strong hero. The Last Of The Mohicans airs on HDNet Movies tonight at 7:30 p.m. Eastern, and again at 11:20.
November 06, 2014 newsreel