Picks and Pans Review: The Trial of Standing Bear

UPDATED 07/03/1989 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 07/03/1989 at 01:00 AM EDT

PBS (Tues., July 4, 9:30 P.M. ET)


In 1877 the U.S. government confiscated Nebraska land inhabited by the Ponca tribe, forcing its 500 members to move to Oklahoma on foot. The trip and the new environment killed a third of the tribe. Then its leader. Chief Standing Bear, and a few followers returned to their old land, where they were arrested. Their trial, which established that the Constitution applies to Native Americans, is the focus of this two-hour drama. It's pokey and dry, but good for you. As Standing Bear, Native American actor Ivan Naranjo delivers an eloquent courtroom plea that Indians are human too. It's a shocking insight into 19th-century bigotry.

Jeff Jarvis is on special assignement.

Your Reaction

Follow Us

On Newsstands Now

Robin Roberts: How Loved Saved Me
  • Robin Roberts: How Loved Saved Me
  • Emma and Andrew: All About Hollywood's Cutest Couple
  • Prince George! More Yummy Photos

Pick up your copy on newsstands

Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine


From Our Partners

Watch It

Editors' Picks

From Our Partners

Sign up for our daily newsletter and other special offers.
    Choose your newsletters
Thank you for signing up! Your request may take up to one week to be processed.
    see all newsletters