The screen is a microcosm of leaf, crystal drops of
precipitation, a stone, emerald green moss. It's a landscape
in miniature. We HEAR the forest. Some distant birds. Their
sound seems to reverberate as if in a cavern. A piece of
sunlight refracts within the drops of water, paints a patch
of moss yellow. The whisper of wind is joined by another
sound that mixes with it. A distant rustling. It gets closer
and louder. It's shallow breathing. It gets ominous.
We're interlopers on the floor of the forest and something
A MOCCASINED FOOT
rockets through the frame scaring us and...
PART OF AN INDIAN FACE
running hard. His head shaved bald except for a scalp-lock.
Tattoos. He's twenty-five. He seems tall and muscled. Heavy,
even breathing. We'll learn later this man is UNCAS, the
last of the Mohicans.
flash as he runs. One carries a flintlock musket. Sweat on
the man's skin. A calico shirt is gathered at the waist with
a wampum belt of small white beads over a breechcloth. He
wears leggings to protect his legs. A long-handled tomahawk
is stuffed in his belt.
ANOTHER PART OF THE FOREST - DAY
MASSIVE WAR CLUB
in the hand of another running man. He's heavier, older...
A green bear claw is tattooed there. Silver armband. A snake
is tattooed over his left eyebrow. Silver rings in his ear.
He's forty to forty-five. His head is shaved into a scalp-
lock. It says:
"Come and lift this from me. Take it, if you
can..." That prospect strikes us as extremely unlikely. This
The French call him "Le Gros Serpent," the Great Snake,
because "he knows the winding ways of men's nature and he
can strike a sudden, deathly blow."
runs, disturbing no leaves, no branches; making no sound.
He's running parallel to Uncas through the cathedral of mature
forest. It's heavily canopied. There's very little brush.
The girth of the trees is huge. Shafts of light illuminate
motes of dust and turn leaves emerald where the sun breaks
through. Sometimes there's ferns; rhododendron, sometimes
pale grass and outcroppings of rock.
These men run the forest streams, over boulders, fallen trees
and down into ravines as if they own them. They do.
EXT. ANOTHER PART OF THE FOREST - DAY
LONG BLACK HAIR:
Rocketing through trees. His torn buckskin shirt is tied at
the waist with a wampum belt holding a tomahawk and a large
knife. A long rifle in which is carved the name "Killdeer"
is in his right fist. Indian tattooing on his chest.
His name is NATHANIEL POE. He's a few years older than Uncas.
The French and the French-speaking tribes know him as La
Longue Carabine (Long Rifle). Other frontiersmen in New York
colony and the Iroquois and Delaware-speaking tribes know
him as Hawkeye. Sweat stains his shirt. He flashes through
the tree branches disturbing nothing. Making no sound.