Thunderheart (1992), starring Val Kilmer, Graham Greene (the actor, not the author), and Sam Shepard is an older film which could and should still resonate today. Fred Ward, Sheila Tousey, Ted Thin Elk, and John Trudell also star in the movie, creating an excellent ensemble where allegiances and alliances shift constantly before the viewer’s eyes.
I’ve visited many places I thought qualified as the middle of nowhere. As a teenager, I thought my college town in western Kentucky was remote. A recent visit to Great Basin National Park in Baker, Nevada took me six miles off the “Loneliest Road in America.” And Big Bend National Park was all the way in southern Texas, on the Rio Grande and the US border with Mexico.
But nothing feels as remote as the Badlands, especially when you’re still 35 miles from Wall, South Dakota, and your gas tank light comes on. That was my harrowing experience earlier this month.