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Two young Lakota sisters, refugees of the Wounded Knee Massacre, fight to survive against a relentless enemy.

Award-winning director/writer Myrton Running Wolf, and executive producer Academy Award Nominated director Terrence Malick, are pleased to announce their short film SOLDIER. Inspired by true events of the Wounded Knee Creek massacre on December 29, 1890. The film exemplifies the inclusion and participation of American Indian producers, filmed on local tribal lands, while getting away from the stereotypical Native American film.

The unique perspective shown in SOLDIER, combines historical events and focuses on a dynamic sibling relationship. The sibling narrative and mesmerizing landscapes captures the audience’s attention. Filming was done on local tribal lands, on the Pyramid Lake reservation and in the Toiyabe National Forest.

SOLDIER had three successful local film screenings on DATE at the University of Nevada Reno in the Reynold’s School of Journalism studio. The turn-out of all three screenings exceeded room capacity, rsulting in a fourth weekend screening.

On December 21, 1890, 10-year-old Chuweku and 6-year-old Thanjkaku find themselves in the heart of the Wounded Knee encampment blissfully unaware of the next day's massacre.

The next morning, the sisters and their Lakota [Sioux] Indian people are attacked by the United States Army's 7th Cavalry regiment. During the massacre, more than 350 Lakota (62 women and children) are slaughtered.


However, Chuweku and Thanjkaku narrowly escape with their lives. In the chaos, the sisters are separated and run in different directions.

​Elder sister, Chuweku, makes her way through the frozen mountains of the Black hills while her younger sister, Thanjkaku, tries to escape the massacre by dashing into the barren Dakota Bad Lands. Each sister uses her knowledge of the land and her survival wit to stay one step ahead of the U.S. Cavalry soldiers.


The relentless Army is too much for young Thanjkaku. Overtaken by long range gunfire, both Thanjkaku and her horse are mortally wounded.

The frozen high mountain passes prove insurmountable for Chuweku. Exhausted and freezing to death, the elder Lakota sister sits down under a tree and gives up her desperate fight for life.

The next morning, the U.S. Cavalry's gravediggers unceremoniously toss tiny Thanjkaku's body into a mass grave. Miles away, Chuweku sleeps on the snow near the edge of death.


Dawn breaks as the U.S. gravediggers stumble upon Chuweku's body. She clings to life, but just barely. The military personnel rush her down the snowy mountainside to safety.

Two months later, on Valentine's Day, Chuweku's rescuers bring her to the Carlisle Indian School - the infamous American Indian assimilation school that carries the motto: 'Kill the Indian, and Save the Man.' Having recovered from her near-death experience, Chuweku is deposited on the stone steps in front of the Indian school and abandoned to her uncertain fate.

Years later, after her successful assimilation, Chuweku drafts a letter recounting her and her sister's experience during the Wounded Knee Massacre. As one final act of defiance, Chuweku states that she will always be her little sister's big sister - she will never forget who she is - she is Chuweku, a Lakota Indian.
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Responses to "Myrton Running Wolf to Release "Soldier", The Unsung Truth of Wounded Knee"

  1. Unknown says:

    I hope to see this one. The pictures after the "battle" say a lot but more needs to be shown and told.

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