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* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, Crow Horse gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker and says this last bit semi-sarcastically, we can assume he's joking.

to:

* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. [[note]]An "[[http://fightfast.com/blog/2016/06/walk-like-warrior/ Indian walk]]", on the balls of your feet or toes-first, probably comes from going barefoot or wearing soft shoes or moccasins. Some Anglo athletes still run that way because it puts less strain on the legs so you can go a bit faster.[[/note]] The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, Crow Horse gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker and says this last bit semi-sarcastically, we can assume he's joking.



* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters also bears a great resemblance to his friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year with the same director, produced by Creator/RobertRedford, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movement clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation ([=GOONs=]) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.

to:

* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters character also bears a great resemblance to his Trudell's friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year with the same director, produced by Creator/RobertRedford, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movement clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation ([=GOONs=]) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.


* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, Crow Horse gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker and says this last bit semi sarcastically, we can assume he's joking.

to:

* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, Crow Horse gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker and says this last bit semi sarcastically, semi-sarcastically, we can assume he's joking.


* BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins: If you want to see how Lakota people dress and live today, watch this movie. Or go to a pow-wow. You can see the differences and similarities between different tribes. There are several documentaries about pow-wows showing everyday attire along with the regalia worn for the dances.

to:

* BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins: If you want to see how Lakota people dress and live today, watch this movie. Or go to a pow-wow. You can see the differences and similarities between different tribes. There are several documentaries about pow-wows showing everyday attire along is a brief pow-wow scene with the regalia worn for the dances.people in traditional regalia.



* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters also bears a great resemblance to his friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year with the same director, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movement clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation (GOONs) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.

to:

* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters also bears a great resemblance to his friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year with the same director, produced by Creator/RobertRedford, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movement clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation (GOONs) ([=GOONs=]) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.


* CategoryTraitor: The Lakota dislike Ray as a man with some Lakota ancestry who's an FBI agent, unsurprisingly, calling him "Washington Redskin" as a result. For his part, he returns the antipathy, disliking them at first as well.

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* CategoryTraitor: The Lakota dislike Ray as a man with some a quarter Lakota ancestry who's an FBI agent, unsurprisingly, calling mocking him as "Washington Redskin" as a result. For Redskin". Ray for his part, he part returns the antipathy, disliking them at first as well. well and disclaiming that heritage.


* CategoryTraitor: The Lakota dislike Ray as a man with some Lakota ancestry who's an FBI agent, unsurprisingly, calling him "Washington Redskin" as a result. For his part, he returns the antipathy, disliking them at first as well.



** The film also dodges PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad by having the main character, a federal agent assigned to investigate a murder at Pine Ridge Reservation (and the hero of the piece, mind you) be contemptuous of and sarcastic toward Lakota traditions at first - [[BoomerangBigot even though he is of part-Lakota ancestry himself, which is something he usually doesn't discuss]] ([[FreudianExcuse his poor relationship with his half-Lakota father seems to be the source of his prejudice]]. By the end of the film, said federal agent also fits the trope, to an extent.

to:

** The film also dodges PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad by having the main character, a federal agent assigned to investigate a murder at Pine Ridge Reservation (and the hero of the piece, mind you) be contemptuous of and sarcastic toward Lakota traditions at first - [[BoomerangBigot even though he is of part-Lakota ancestry himself, which is something he usually doesn't discuss]] ([[FreudianExcuse his poor relationship with his half-Lakota father seems to be the source of his prejudice]].prejudice]]). By the end of the film, said federal agent also fits the trope, to an extent.



* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, the sheriff gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker, one assumes that he's joking.

to:

* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, the sheriff Crow Horse gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker, one assumes that DeadpanSnarker and says this last bit semi sarcastically, we can assume he's joking.


** And spoofed by tribal police officer and DeadpanSnarker Walter Crow Horse, who claims that he heard a message on the wind that the protagonist was exceeding the speed limit. Later when the federal agent has a vision, Horse gets rather annoyed because ''he'' has never had one!

to:

** And spoofed by tribal police officer and DeadpanSnarker Walter Crow Horse, who claims that he heard a message on the wind that the protagonist was exceeding the speed limit. limit, and supposedly guesses how much money a person had in their pockets just by the depth of their footprints. It's pretty clear he's joking though. Later when the federal agent has a vision, Crow Horse gets rather annoyed because ''he'' has never had one!



* PoliticallyIncorrectHero: Ray is a quarter Lakota, but identifies as white and [[BoomerangBigot has almost completely turned his back on the heritage of his half-Lakota father]]. When he's assigned to a Lakota reservation to investigate a murder, he's not at all happy about it. Throughout most of the film, he feels almost no sympathy toward any of the Lakota characters (except for a school teacher with whom he falls in love) and even mocks Lakota religious beliefs. He does eventually come to embrace his heritage, though.

to:

* PoliticallyIncorrectHero: Ray is a quarter Lakota, but identifies as white and [[BoomerangBigot has almost completely turned his back on the heritage of his half-Lakota father]].father, which he's disdainful toward]]. When he's assigned to a Lakota reservation to investigate a murder, he's not at all happy about it. Throughout most of the film, he feels almost no sympathy toward any of the Lakota characters (except for a school teacher with whom he falls in love) and even mocks Lakota religious beliefs. He does eventually come to embrace his heritage, though.



* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters also bears a great resemblance to his friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movements clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation (GOONs) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.

to:

* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters also bears a great resemblance to his friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year, year with the same director, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movements Movement clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation (GOONs) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.


* MixedAncestry: Ray Levoi is a quarter Lakota, and his ancestry features heavily in the plot. Also the tribal council president Jack Milton (Fred Ward) though it isn't outright stated. Both he and Val Kilmer (Levoi) really do have native ancestry (though Cherokee, not Lakota) so FakeMixedRace is thankfully {{averted}}.

to:

* MixedAncestry: Ray Levoi is a quarter Lakota, and his ancestry features heavily in the plot. Also the tribal council president Jack Milton (Fred Ward) Ward), though it isn't outright stated. Both he and Val Kilmer (Levoi) really do have native ancestry (though Cherokee, not Lakota) so FakeMixedRace is thankfully {{averted}}.


* TheRez: The movie is made of the political rez. Given that it's based on Pine Ridge in TheSeventies, yeah.

to:

* TheRez: The movie is made of the political rez. Given that it's based on Pine Ridge in TheSeventies, yeah.yeah, TruthInTelevision.


* MixedAncestry: Ray Levoi is a quarter Lakota, and his ancestry features heavily in the plot. Also the tribal council president Jack Milton (Fred Ward) though it isn't outright stated. Both actors really have native ancestry (though Cherokee, not Lakota) so [[AvertedTrope averting]] FakeMixedRace.

to:

* MixedAncestry: Ray Levoi is a quarter Lakota, and his ancestry features heavily in the plot. Also the tribal council president Jack Milton (Fred Ward) though it isn't outright stated. Both actors he and Val Kilmer (Levoi) really do have native ancestry (though Cherokee, not Lakota) so [[AvertedTrope averting]] FakeMixedRace.FakeMixedRace is thankfully {{averted}}.

Added DiffLines:

* MixedAncestry: Ray Levoi is a quarter Lakota, and his ancestry features heavily in the plot. Also the tribal council president Jack Milton (Fred Ward) though it isn't outright stated. Both actors really have native ancestry (though Cherokee, not Lakota) so [[AvertedTrope averting]] FakeMixedRace.


In the 1970s, FBI Agent Ray Levoi is tasked to investigate a possibly political murder on the Native American reservation in South Dakota because of his partial native ancestry. In the process, he discovers a conspiracy involving uranium mining.

to:

In the 1970s, FBI Agent Ray Levoi is tasked to investigate a possibly political murder on the Native American Lakota Sioux reservation in South Dakota because of his partial native Lakota ancestry. In the process, he discovers a conspiracy involving uranium mining.



* BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins: If you want to see how Lakhota people dress and live today, watch this movie. Or go to a pow-wow. You can see the differences and similarities between different tribes. There are several documentaries about pow-wows showing everyday attire along with the regalia worn for the dances.

to:

* BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins: If you want to see how Lakhota Lakota people dress and live today, watch this movie. Or go to a pow-wow. You can see the differences and similarities between different tribes. There are several documentaries about pow-wows showing everyday attire along with the regalia worn for the dances.



* GoodFlawsBadFlaws: Ray Levoi, the FBI-agent protagonist, manages to be a consistently sympathetic character despite having more than a casual contempt for Native American culture from the outset - something that was rare even in UsefulNotes/TheGoldenAgeOfHollywood. [[BeautyEqualsGoodness Being young and good-looking]] helps (Levoi is being played by Creator/ValKilmer in his early thirties, after all), as does his PunchClockVillain status when the FBI sends him to a Sioux reservation to investigate a murder and basically requires him to harass and interrogate suspected political radicals (at one point even pulling a young Sioux out of his tepee during a religious ceremony, prompting the arrestee to demand if [[DoubleStandard he'd ever arrest a Christian while that Christian was praying in church]]). Most crucially, however, Levoi is half-Sioux himself. While this doesn't grant him NWordPrivileges (though the full-blooded Sioux characters seem to have this, derisively calling Levoi the "Washington Redskin"), it does make him supremely confused about his identity and [[DaddyIssues ambivalent toward the memory of his ne'er-do-well Sioux father]]. He's also naturally resentful that he's been assigned to this case [[TokenMinority specifically because of his heritage]], and doesn't want to be on the reservation in the first place. Finally, Levoi does fall in love with a full-blooded Indian woman, manages to get over his prejudices and reclaim his roots, and ultimately solves what proves to be a ''Film/{{Chinatown}}''-level mystery marked by corruption InherentInTheSystem.

to:

* GoodFlawsBadFlaws: Ray Levoi, the FBI-agent protagonist, manages to be a consistently sympathetic character despite having more than a casual contempt for Native American culture from the outset - something that was rare even in UsefulNotes/TheGoldenAgeOfHollywood. [[BeautyEqualsGoodness Being young and good-looking]] helps (Levoi is being played by Creator/ValKilmer in his early thirties, after all), as does his PunchClockVillain status when the FBI sends him to a Sioux Lakota reservation to investigate a murder and basically requires him to harass and interrogate suspected political radicals (at one point even pulling a young Sioux men out of his tepee a sweat lodge during a religious ceremony, ceremony to arrest one of them, prompting the arrestee to demand if [[DoubleStandard he'd ever arrest a Christian while that Christian was praying in church]]). Most crucially, however, Levoi is half-Sioux a quarter Lakota himself. While this doesn't grant him NWordPrivileges (though the full-blooded Sioux Lakota characters seem to have this, derisively calling Levoi the "Washington Redskin"), it does make him supremely confused about his identity and [[DaddyIssues ambivalent toward the memory of his ne'er-do-well Sioux half-Lakota father]]. He's also naturally resentful that he's been assigned to this case [[TokenMinority specifically because of his heritage]], and doesn't want to be on the reservation in the first place. Finally, Levoi does fall in love with a full-blooded Indian Lakota woman, manages to get over his prejudices and reclaim his roots, and ultimately solves what proves to be a ''Film/{{Chinatown}}''-level mystery marked by corruption InherentInTheSystem.



** Jimmy Looks Twice has a reputation for shape shifting, but the film keeps it sufficiently ambiguous.
** The film also dodges PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad by having the main character, a federal agent assigned to investigate a murder at Pine Ridge Reservation (and the hero of the piece, mind you) be contemptuous of and sarcastic toward Sioux traditions at first - [[BoomerangBigot even though he is of part-Sioux ancestry himself, which is something he usually doesn't discuss]]. By the end of the film, said federal agent also fits the trope, to an extent.

to:

** Jimmy Looks Twice has a reputation for shape shifting, shape-shifting, but the film keeps it sufficiently ambiguous.
** The film also dodges PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad by having the main character, a federal agent assigned to investigate a murder at Pine Ridge Reservation (and the hero of the piece, mind you) be contemptuous of and sarcastic toward Sioux Lakota traditions at first - [[BoomerangBigot even though he is of part-Sioux part-Lakota ancestry himself, which is something he usually doesn't discuss]].discuss]] ([[FreudianExcuse his poor relationship with his half-Lakota father seems to be the source of his prejudice]]. By the end of the film, said federal agent also fits the trope, to an extent.



* PoliticallyIncorrectHero: Ray is a quarter Native American, but identifies as white and [[BoomerangBigot has almost completely turned his back on the heritage of his half-Sioux father]]. When he's assigned to a Sioux reservation to investigate a murder, he's not at all happy about it. Throughout most of the film, he feels almost no sympathy toward any of the Native American characters (except for a schoolteacher with whom he falls in love) and even mocks Sioux religious beliefs. He does eventually come to embrace his heritage, though.

to:

* PoliticallyIncorrectHero: Ray is a quarter Native American, Lakota, but identifies as white and [[BoomerangBigot has almost completely turned his back on the heritage of his half-Sioux half-Lakota father]]. When he's assigned to a Sioux Lakota reservation to investigate a murder, he's not at all happy about it. Throughout most of the film, he feels almost no sympathy toward any of the Native American Lakota characters (except for a schoolteacher school teacher with whom he falls in love) and even mocks Sioux Lakota religious beliefs. He does eventually come to embrace his heritage, though.



* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, sheriff of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, the sheriff gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker, one assumes that he's joking.
* StealthHiBye: A few of the locals pull this trope on Ray as an insult, implying that a real Sioux wouldn't fall for it. That implication is never tested.

to:

* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, sheriff tribal police officer of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, the sheriff gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker, one assumes that he's joking.
* StealthHiBye: A few of the locals pull this trope on Ray as an insult, implying that a real Sioux Lakota wouldn't fall for it. That implication is never tested.
* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: The film is based on actual incidents on and around the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota during the 1970s, which John Trudell (Jimmy Looks Twice) participated in personally. His characters also bears a great resemblance to his friend Leonard Peltier, who was controversially convicted in the murders of two FBI agents (Peltier remains imprisoned, and a documentary about this came out in the same year, entitled ''Incident at Oglala''). The Aboriginal Rights Movements clearly represents the American Indian Movement as well, which both Trudell and Peltier were prominent members of. Jack Milton (Fred Ward) is pretty clearly an {{expy}} of pro-government tribal council president Dick Wilson, whose followers are alleged to have murdered numerous dissidents. The Guardians of the Oglala Nation (GOONs) appear much as they're reported to have behaved.

Added DiffLines:

[[quoteright:299:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/9e06c22e5e00f9c475eb21a6b68676cd.jpg]]

''Thunderheart'' is a 1992 {{Western}} film starring Creator/ValKilmer.

In the 1970s, FBI Agent Ray Levoi is tasked to investigate a possibly political murder on the Native American reservation in South Dakota because of his partial native ancestry. In the process, he discovers a conspiracy involving uranium mining.

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!!This film provides examples of:

* BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins: If you want to see how Lakhota people dress and live today, watch this movie. Or go to a pow-wow. You can see the differences and similarities between different tribes. There are several documentaries about pow-wows showing everyday attire along with the regalia worn for the dances.
* TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch: Maggie tells Ray about a man who supposedly committed "suicide" by shooting himself in the back of the head.
* GoodFlawsBadFlaws: Ray Levoi, the FBI-agent protagonist, manages to be a consistently sympathetic character despite having more than a casual contempt for Native American culture from the outset - something that was rare even in UsefulNotes/TheGoldenAgeOfHollywood. [[BeautyEqualsGoodness Being young and good-looking]] helps (Levoi is being played by Creator/ValKilmer in his early thirties, after all), as does his PunchClockVillain status when the FBI sends him to a Sioux reservation to investigate a murder and basically requires him to harass and interrogate suspected political radicals (at one point even pulling a young Sioux out of his tepee during a religious ceremony, prompting the arrestee to demand if [[DoubleStandard he'd ever arrest a Christian while that Christian was praying in church]]). Most crucially, however, Levoi is half-Sioux himself. While this doesn't grant him NWordPrivileges (though the full-blooded Sioux characters seem to have this, derisively calling Levoi the "Washington Redskin"), it does make him supremely confused about his identity and [[DaddyIssues ambivalent toward the memory of his ne'er-do-well Sioux father]]. He's also naturally resentful that he's been assigned to this case [[TokenMinority specifically because of his heritage]], and doesn't want to be on the reservation in the first place. Finally, Levoi does fall in love with a full-blooded Indian woman, manages to get over his prejudices and reclaim his roots, and ultimately solves what proves to be a ''Film/{{Chinatown}}''-level mystery marked by corruption InherentInTheSystem.
* MagicalNativeAmerican:
** "Grandpa" Sam Reaches fits the trope, but the movie earns points by presenting a brutally unromanticized view of reservation life at the time, with government corruption, violence, alcoholism, and crushing poverty. Also, everything Grandpa does is what Lakota people would reasonably expect a ''wikchasa wakan'' (holy man) to do; he leads a sweat lodge and later an outdoor prayer session, prays and leaves food out for animals, telepathically picks up on some facts about Ray's father, and offers to share a sacred pipe with him.
** Jimmy Looks Twice has a reputation for shape shifting, but the film keeps it sufficiently ambiguous.
** The film also dodges PoliticalCorrectnessGoneMad by having the main character, a federal agent assigned to investigate a murder at Pine Ridge Reservation (and the hero of the piece, mind you) be contemptuous of and sarcastic toward Sioux traditions at first - [[BoomerangBigot even though he is of part-Sioux ancestry himself, which is something he usually doesn't discuss]]. By the end of the film, said federal agent also fits the trope, to an extent.
** And spoofed by tribal police officer and DeadpanSnarker Walter Crow Horse, who claims that he heard a message on the wind that the protagonist was exceeding the speed limit. Later when the federal agent has a vision, Horse gets rather annoyed because ''he'' has never had one!
* PoliticallyIncorrectHero: Ray is a quarter Native American, but identifies as white and [[BoomerangBigot has almost completely turned his back on the heritage of his half-Sioux father]]. When he's assigned to a Sioux reservation to investigate a murder, he's not at all happy about it. Throughout most of the film, he feels almost no sympathy toward any of the Native American characters (except for a schoolteacher with whom he falls in love) and even mocks Sioux religious beliefs. He does eventually come to embrace his heritage, though.
* TheRez: The movie is made of the political rez. Given that it's based on Pine Ridge in TheSeventies, yeah.
* ScarilyCompetentTracker: Walter Crow Horse, sheriff of the Native American reservation, tries to convince the FBI that a footprint left at a murder site was of a man who walked like a white man, which the prime suspect doesn't do. The FBI remain unconvinced, so he proceeds to tell one of them about his own weight, eating habits, and ankle holster from footprints. When the FBI agent sarcastically asks how much change was in the man's pockets, the sheriff gives that information too. Given that Crow Horse is a DeadpanSnarker, one assumes that he's joking.
* StealthHiBye: A few of the locals pull this trope on Ray as an insult, implying that a real Sioux wouldn't fall for it. That implication is never tested.

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