Dances With Wolves is directed by Kevin Costner (who also stars in it), and this thing beat out The Godfather Part III, Goodfellas, Ghost and Awakenings for a Best Picture Oscar. And yes, there is a scene where he dances with a wolf.
The story follows Kevin Costner’s character called John, who is a soldier that attempts suicide. By a twist of fate, he escapes death and becomes an inspiring role model for his fellow mates. He is then posted to a faraway guard-house and told to wait for further instructions. There, John becomes bored and mostly spends his time writing a diary. Later on, John encounters a Native American tribe and falls in love with the tribe leader’s daughter played by Mary McDonnell.
Kevin Costner’s acting here is impressive. You believe that he is stuck in this situation where he doesn’t know if the army is looking for him, or if he should just give up and go home. There are scenes where he is writing his diary and I like the voiceovers that shows you the kind of person John is. A lot of time is spent dwelling in John’s mind, and sometimes you worry if he was going to make a wrong decision.
A significant portion of the film deals with how John attempts to connect with the Native American tribe, which I found to be very interesting. There is a scene where he tries to offer them a drink, and leads to an awkward and humourous situation. This film is engaging because it allows you to slowly discover the tribe and its history and what kind of people they really are.
Dances With Wolves may get a little slow-moving at times, but it managed to hold my attention for the most part. Although the story becomes too mundane at certain points, it still flows nicely and the premise is easy to understand. Most importantly, the decisions that John makes affects the way the story develops.