Son Of The Morning Star, Everyone seems to have an opinion on this subject, but the fact is that none of us were there when it happened. Many of us think we know the truth more than others because we are historians, teachers or history buffs. We can research it to death as I have throughout my life and read all the books. (see “Where Custer Fell” by James S. Brust). But we can’t go back in time to 1876 and watch it unfold before our eyes and see what really transpired. So if you think Custer was a hero or idiot or goat during the LBH battle…well no one knows for sure. Reno and Benteen did not know what wrong either and they WERE there.
One story said that the Last Stand battle itself took about as much time as it takes for someone to eat lunch.
“Son of the Morning Star” is the best movie version yet of the battle. At least it looks like the Greasy Grass plains of Montana and not in the desert area of Monument Valley!!! Custer was not fighting southwest Indians like the Apaches either (see earlier film versions) So at least this film attempts to be accurate in some ways.
Intelligent and Accurate with Attention to Detail
By all accounts this is the most accurate of the screen adaptations of the famous General Custer and his last stand. It is definitely one of the better TV Movies to date at the time of its release. The attention to detail and the balanced screenplay are impressive as is the depth of the story with a good deal of political procedures and insights of Washington D.C. at the time.
Manifest Destiny is defined in an unrestrained utterance by President Grant. It is basically “my way or the highway” to use a modern alliteration. It has a rich and thoughtful look and has more production values than television usually presented. The film covers a ten year period and makes some use of Custer’s Civil War record and earlier campaigns to present us with a foundation and lets us in on the major mistakes and flaws as well as virtues in this military man’s career.
The performances are very good with David Strathairn and Rosanna Arquette standing out. Gary Cole is adequate and is held up by the surroundings, script, and substance. The voice-over narration ties some things together and the battle at Little Bighorn is impressive and a fine finale that displays an engaging feeling of the event in both the location and the personnel.