The conquest of the West was nearly complete by the 1870s. In one remarkable decade, with Indians effectively confined to reservations, over four million new settlers arrived to stake their claim to ...
This series will provide unprecedented access to the wilderness, frontier lawlessness, and bloodshed of the 40 years between the end of the American Civil War and after the turn of the 20th... See full summary »
Mark Lee Gardner,
Bert Thomas Morris,
David H. Stevens
This documentary covers the history of the American West from the Native American tribes to their encounter with Europeans and how the Europeans conquered them and settled the land. In telling this story, the film takes into the account to both the viewpoints of Indians and other minorities to balance the white populations history.Written by
Kenneth Chisholm <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The history of 'The West', the area of the United States west of the Missouri River, from the 16th century to the early 1900s.
Interesting documentary series. Well-researched, with some great detail. Doesn't cover just bigger-picture history but also some of the micro stuff, the lives of everyday people involved.
While the facts are interesting, this negated to some extent by the editorial bias. Instead of just giving the history, the writers decided to centre the series on the native Americans. This means that the common theme is that the white/US expansion into the west is bad and that whites are evil. You can sense the delight in Peter Coyote's voice as he details Custer's Last Stand.
Covering the native American perspective was necessary but it didn't have to be the only perspective or a good vs bad, us vs them sort of thing. This focus extends into everything, including the intro theme, the music of which became very irritating, very quickly, yet got played ad nauseam in the series.
In addition, the one thing most people would have looked for in this series was stories of famous gunslingers and outlaws from the late-1800s. There's a brief mention of people like Wyatt Earp and Doc Holiday, but that's it. This is consistent with a comment towards the end of the series that the actual West wasn't as glamourous or action-packed as Hollywood makes it out to be. This is true, but they could still have covered some of that history.
Overall, worth watching for a detailed history of the West. Just don't expect stories of gunslingers or a balanced approach to history.
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