Windwalker (film)

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He conquered love and he walks the winds of eternity!
Directed byKieth Merrill
Produced byArthur R. Dubs
Thomas E. Ballard
Written byRay Goldrup
StarringTrevor Howard
Nick Ramus
James Remar
Music byMerrill Jenson
CinematographyReed Smoot
Distributed byPacific International Enterprises
Release date
  • January 1981 (1981-01) (limited)
Running time
108 min.
CountryUnited States
LanguageCheyenne, Crow, English

Windwalker is a 1981 western film directed by Kieth Merrill and written by Ray Goldrup, based on a novel by Blaine M. Yorgason. It stars Trevor Howard and Nick Ramus.


Windwalker is an aged Cheyenne warrior. As a young husband and father, he watched helplessly as his wife, Tashina, was killed and one of his twin sons kidnapped during a raid by rival Crow warriors. After many years of searching for this son, Windwalker dies during the winter of 1797 in what will become the state of Utah.

After Windwalker's funeral, his remaining son, Smiling Wolf, leads his family south to rejoin the rest of the tribe; on the way they are attacked by a band of Crow warriors and, he fought them off, Smiling Wolf is badly injured and the family forced to hide.

The Great Spirit reawakens Windwalker, and after battling the forces of nature and his own physical frailty, he rejoins his family. Using Cheyenne medicine to heal Smiling Wolf's wounds, Windwalker leads the family to a sacred Cheyenne hiding cave. From there, he and Smiling Wolf's two young sons prepare booby traps for the Crow raiding party, all of which work perfectly, leaving only the raiding party leader and one other warrior.

The Crow warrior is captured and taken to the cave, where he is revealed to be Windwalker's long-lost son. With his family safe and his son restored to him, Windwalker confronts his old enemy and offers him peace, but the Crow refuses, forcing a final battle. The restored son fights the Crow leader in his father's place and is victorious. With his family safe and restored, Windwalker is now free to proceed to the afterlife, where he is reunited with Tashina.

Main cast[edit]

Production and release[edit]

Windwalker was shot in various outdoor locations in Utah including the Wasatch Mountains.[1] To maintain authenticity to the story, the film's dialogue is subtitled in English with Cheyenne and Crow languages spoken. Chief Dan George was going to play Windwalker, but became ill, leading Merrill to ask Howard to take the role.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ D'Arc, James V. (2010). When Hollywood came to town: a history of moviemaking in Utah (1st ed.). Layton, Utah: Gibbs Smith. ISBN 9781423605874.

External links[edit]