Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1970s Little Big Man (1970)

Little Big Man (1970)

Dustin Hoffman plays Jack Crabb, a 121-year-old survivor of Custer’s Last Stand, who narrates his long and eventful life to a doubting historian (William Hickey).

The plot follows Crabb from the time when, as a 10-year-old white orphan (his parents were killed in a Pawnee raid), he is found and adopted by a Cheyenne elder named Old Lodge Skins (Chief Dan George) and is later made a brave.

We see the Cheyenne through his eyes, presented as a rich and meaningful way of life. Crabb’s adopted father, tribal elder Old Lodge Skins, is a wise, all-knowing sage who is also something of a magician.

Chief Dan George was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar.

Hoffman is brilliantly convincing as the centenarian, as well as managing to look and behave like a very young man when the movie goes into flashback. In order to play the old man, he had to suffer under a 14-piece latex mask, which took five hours a day to apply under the hot makeup lamps.

Director Arthur Penn’s film has been seen as an obvious analogy between the treatment of the Indians and the Vietnam War.

Jack Crabb
Dustin Hoffman
Old Lodge Skins
Chief Dan George
Mrs Pendrake
Faye Dunaway
Mr Merriweather
Martin Balsam
General Custer
Richard Mulligan
Wild Bill Hickok
Jeff Corey
Aimee Eccles
Kelly Jean Peters
Carole Androsky
Little Horse
Robert Little Star
Younger Bear
Cal Bellini
Younger Bear As Youth
Steve Miranda
Shadow That Comes in Sight
Ruben Moreno
Burns Red in the Sun
Steve Shemayne
William Hickey
James Anderson
Jesse Vint
Alan Oppenheimer
Rev. Pendrake
Thayer David
Mr Kane
Philip Kenneally
Jack Bannon
Young Jack Crabb
Ray Dimas
Adolescent Jack Crabb
Alan Howard
Lou Cutell
Shot Gun Guard
M. Emmet Walsh
Digging Bear
Emily Cho
Little Elk
Cecelia Kootenay
Buffalo Wallow Woman
Dessie Bad Bear
Crow Scout
Chief Leonard George
Bert Conway

Arthur Penn