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The usually adept Daniel Day-Lewis, employed here more as an icon than as an actor, stars as Hawkeye, frontiersman and adopted son of a Mohican (Indian activist Russell Means), who becomes romantically involved with the daughter (Madeleine Stowe) of a British officer in 1757, during the French and Indian War, in a visually handsome but dramatically attenuated 1992 adaptation of James Fenimore Cooper's classic American novel. The North Carolina locations, framed in 'Scope, are certainly pretty, but the period ambience is undermined by a tacky wallpaper score by Trevor Jones and Randy Edelman; all things considered, I still prefer Maurice Tourneur's 1920 adaptation of the tale (I haven't seen George B. Seitz's 1936 version, but Philip Dunne's script from that film is credited here as a source). Michael Mann, the director, collaborated on the screenplay with Christopher Crowe; with Wes Studi and Jodhi May. R, 114 min.

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