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The White Buffalo

4.3 out of 5 stars 198 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Charles Bronson, Jack Warden and Will Sampson head a brilliant cast in this intriguing tale of Wild Bill Hickok and Crazy Horse, two legendary western figures, and their quest for the demon buffalo that haunts them both.

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Product Details

  • Actors: Charles Bronson, Jack Warden, Will Sampson
  • Directors: J. Lee Thompson
  • Writers: Screenplay by RICHARD SALE From His Novel "The White Buffalo"
  • Producers: Produced by PANCHO KOHNER
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • 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: MGM
  • DVD Release Date: April 20, 2010
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003B3NV8G
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,548 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: VHS Tape
This movie is based on Richard Sale's book concerning two characters enroute to their mutual destiny, Crazy Horse and Wild Bill Hickock. They are both called to hunt the sacred White Buffalo for a different purpose. Crazy Horse, to re-claim the right to be called by his name and to wrap the hyde around his dead child so that she can enter paradise. While Hickock is drawn by a sixth sense toward his encounter through nightmarish dreams in the belief that the confrontation will solve the sickness that has been in his brain. The movie is so full of western slang that you almost need a glossary of terms like the nadsat language in "A Clockwork Orange", to know what is going on. It is either a great movie or just an average one according to how you feel about a western that is mysterious, deep, intensely dark, full of atmospheric snow laden mountains, a god-like Buffalo that cannot be stopped and a stand out performance by Clint Walker as a very bad adversary. Incredibly the moody but excellent adaptive music was never released on this film until 2002!...and then only on a limited run for film buffs (no pun intended)You can almost classify this as a Western Horror movie and it has an excellent supporting cast, including Kim Novack,Slim Pickens, John Carradine and others who fill the stock characters to perfection. The poster used to advertise this film is a real collector's item and it is a film that should be preserved in the future with a quality DVD transfer. I normally don't like Westerns but this caught my attention. Bronson was the big box-office draw at the time and this movie was a critical failure in 1977 but it still endures and captures the imagination today due to it's wierd subject matter. Probably ahead of its time!.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I have been searching all over the internet for a copy of this film, which I consider one of Charles Bronson's best. I much preferred him in movies like "The White Buffalo" and "Once Upon a Time in the West," as opposed to the "Death Wish" series. I find "The White Buffalo" to be one of those movies you don't forget. The climax scene where the buffalo crashes through a wall of snow and ice gave me nightmares when I first saw it! If you're a Charles Bronson/Old West genre fan, buy or rent this movie.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Richard Sales' book made into film has returned for purchase again, finally. It stars Charels Bronson, Will Sampson and Jack Warden in Dino De Laurentis' bigger than life production. It's the story of 'Wild' Bill Hickok and Chief Crazy Horse supposedly based on a true event where the two men met to fight the same nightmare that haunted them both. At this time, Hickok was dying from syphillis and Crazy horse would soon fight his last battle. The two men become friends as they hunt the White Spike. Hickok because he is terrified of the nightmares he has of it and Crazy Horse to wrap his child killed by the Buffalo as it stampeded through his village. Crazy horse must wrap the child in the white buffalo hide so she can enter the Great Indian after-Life. Jack Warden is also along as Hickok's best friend, although his reasons are monetary only. The White Buffalo, built by Carlo Rambaldi, has been said to appear fake on the screen, but this two ton terror appears real enough to bring chills to you as it terrorizes the western mountains. Rambaldi wanted to achieve a 'dream-like' effect since both men were hunting a 'nightmare. He has more than succeeded. In the end both Hickok and Crazy Horse both bring it down and Hickok loses his friend Jack Warden because he gives the hide to Crazy Horse, a hide that would have brought $2000 back then. It is also when Crazy Horse finds out his 'friend' is the one and only Wild Bill Hickok, enemy of his people for shooting their Peacemaker years ago. Crazy Horse says, though they part as 'brothers, they will never meet that way again. Richard Sales did much research on the two 'brothers' and the story is sworn to be true. In the end, Hickok and Crazy Horse die the same year, each by violent methods.Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A decidedly odd combination to be sure but that was my impression after seeing this atypical Charles Bronson Western again after more than 30 years (I first saw it on its original release in 1977). The supernatural elements of the story along with the unreal reality of some of the lighting and use of color recall such Hammer horrors as THE GORGON and THE BRIDES OF DRACULA. The beauty of some of the images and the uneven editing resemble the later films of D.W. Griffith. Portions of the movie were even filmed where Griffith shot the battles for BIRTH OF A NATION back in 1914. The town sequences were shot at a Western museum in Colorado while most of the mountain scenes were shot in New Mexico. The sometimes jarring editing, lapses in continuity, and occasional sloppiness are typical of director J. Lee Thompson's (THE GUNS OF NAVARONE, CAPE FEAR) later films probably the results of tight budgets. A good example of this is Jack Warden's glass eye make-up which changes from scene to scene. Sometimes he doesn't appear to be wearing any make-up at all. But these are minor distractions. Thompson's pace is excellent. He knows how to move the film along while staging his action set pieces effectively.

The setting is 1874 during the gold rush that took place in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Wild Bill Hickok (Bronson) has come there not for gold but to find a monster white buffalo which has been haunting his dreams. He has syphilis ("caught a cold in the pants that won't go away" is how it's described) and needs to wear shades to protect his eyes. Chief Crazy Horse (Will Sampson) also seeks the white buffalo to avenge the death of his child and regain his lost honor.
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