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The Education of Little Tree

4.5 out of 5 stars 139 customer reviews


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Editorial Reviews

The Education of Little Tree

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: James Cromwell, Joseph Ashton, Tantoo Cardinal, Mika Boorem, Christopher Heyerdahl
  • Directors: Richard Friedenberg
  • Writers: Richard Friedenberg, Don Sipes, Earl Hamner Jr., Forrest Carter
  • Producers: Jake Eberts, Laurie Marie Parker, Lenny Young
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: March 12, 2002
  • Run Time: 112 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005V1XI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,476 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Education of Little Tree" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on February 19, 2004
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
As a Native American I am well aware of all the blatant stereotyping out there. What I like about this movie is the underlayment of good values. Yes, there is the moonshining, and it was illegal and booze has definitely had a detrimental effect on all races of people. However, this just showed that people during those times were really scrapping to keep their lives going. The Grandparents were not sitting around drinking. As with Casinos, they were selling their product to Dominant culture people. No, I am not a drinker and I teach abstinance.A perfect moment if parents are watching with their kids(as they should), to field children's thoughts about it. Do some teaching.
I wonder how many people know that during the Depression when other races of people were just hungry and homeless, Indian peoples across America- some people literally starved to death. On the bottom economically. Only 75 years ago! In our country?
The connection of the people to the land and nature was very evident, but, understated, and they were not stereotyped as turning into mystical beings, but, rather, being one with the beauty around them- poor but rooted there. My humble Grandparents also took me to rock ledges and the woods to pray. Showed reverence for all living things.
Someone has mentioned that characters were stereotyped as typical of mountain people. I would like to say that one of the reasons I like this movie is that I was very moved by the way a filmmaker set down scenes and family interractions that I experienced. There are people still alive who I have known well, who are good nurturing souls like the Grandparents and John Willow. Even now, in Hollers and on country cowpaths, there are folks like these, believe me.
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Format: VHS Tape
Despite the fact that the book on which the movie was based was a fraud (sold as an autobiography, which it wasn't), this movie was wonderfully done. Growing up in the East TN and Southwest Virginia mountains with a Scotch/Irish Grandpa and a part Cherokee Grandma, I saw a lot of our family in this movie. It is true to the depression era of East Tennessee (and yes, a lot of children participated in moonshining). I highly recommend the movie to everyone. It's a shame that movies like this have to be made in Canada, but other than "Smoke Signals" so far all the truer stories of Native American People are. Maybe one day our country will accept our heritage and do this.
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Format: DVD
The Education of Little Tree is one of the best keeper movies I have had the pleasure of watching in years. My 18 year old son watched it 3 times in 2 days. My best friend loved it, and cried during some of the touching scenes. The few places where there are curse words used are unfortunate, as there are families who would completely enjoy this movie, but won't buy it because of a few words. I have native ancestry and thought this movie was respectful to my background. This movie left me warm and wanting more of the same.
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Format: DVD
These days I watch the first scenes of a DVD rather cautiously, waiting to see if I'll get hooked. To my surprise, this DVD was totally absorbing: the beauty of the countryside and the even-handed portrayal of story and characters.

I actually liked the way the child got involved in the moonshining action, showing how it's hard to define activities as "good" or "bad." Many citizens believe the moonshine laws did more harm than good, like the war on drugs today.

I also liked the way the movie gave us an ending that was satisfying but not sugary. Bad things happen. The child was learning to differentiate between nature's cruelty and invented human cruelty.

And I don't think the whites were stereotyped as bad. The grandfather and his fellow moonshiners were a great bunch. The church scene was a little extreme but offered some much-needed comic relief.

Why four stars and not five? After watching the video, I learned the author's story, and I felt a little cheated. But after reading reviews by native Americans and Cherokees, it's reassuring to know the film managed to tell an accurate story. When I lived in Alaska, I heard many horror stories about the way governmet treated Native Americans. No surprises on that score.
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Format: DVD
This movie is beautiful to look at and also has a beautiful respect for the Cherokee culture. James Cromwell is an excellent actor and as usual is wonderful in this film. Joesph Ashton is adorable as Little Tree. Tantoo Cardinal (though looking a bit too young and healthy for the role) and Graham Greene also give great performances. I wasn't thrilled with the idea of Little Tree being taught the moonshine business but in the context of the story it does fit and is not offensive. I suppose someone could be offended by the portrayal of some of the mountain people especially in the church scenes but again it fits in to the storyline and has some historical accuracy. I have never read the book and was unaware of any controversy about the author until I read other people's reviews and I hope the book's author's affiliations don't keep anyone from enjoying this film.
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