Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

2007 NR 2h 12m DVD

Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

2007 NR 2h 12m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
A dark chapter of U.S. history comes to light in this epic saga (which earned an Emmy Award for Best Made-for-Television Movie) of the U.S. government's deliberate extermination of the American Indians. Beginning after the Sioux victory at Little Big Horn, the film traces the stories of three men: a Sioux doctor (Adam Beach), a lobbying senator (Aidan Quinn) and the Lakota hero Sitting Bull (August Schellenberg).
Aidan Quinn, Adam Beach, August Schellenberg, Anna Paquin, Wes Studi, Fred Dalton Thompson, J.K. Simmons, Eric Schweig, Colm Feore
Yves Simoneau
Widescreen 1.78:1
English, French, Spanish (Neutral)
English: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish (Neutral): Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo
NR - Not rated. This movie has not been rated by the MPAA.
age 14+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 14+
age 14+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that this production, based on the nonfiction book by Dee Brown, has two intense Indian-massacre scenes -- one at the Little Big Horn in which Indians do the massacring, the other the Wounded Knee battle in which Indians are largely victims. Women and children are shown perishing in killings and disease epidemics, and a schoolhouse environment (for Indian children) seems bleak and oppressive. The downbeat tale puts across a strong theme of mistrust of the U.S. government.

Sexual Content

Not applicable


Rifle and mortar fire shed blood in battle scenes, and there are knifings and scalpings. A bloody closeup of a leg wound, and bullets are dug out of patients without sedation. A pair of Indians are whipped. Wild animals, horses, and cattle are also slain. Dead bodies of epidemic victims shown, including children. One Indian chief compares another (who cooperates with the white man) to a woman being raped.


"Balls," "s--t," plus a single use of the f-word (by a US president).

Social Behavior

While the story is sad, there is a sense of the indominatable spirit of the Indians in not surrendering completely to the white man. While it's stated that Indian tribes warred against each other when they should have been pulling together against the European invaders, the point is made that no tribe, village, or clan should have to accept what Washington D.C. did. The usually overlooked role of Canada in the U.S.-Indian wars gets some illumination here.


Not applicable

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Indians are shown lining up for free alcohol, in the form of vile-tasting medication.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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