Powwow Highway is a 1989 comedy-drama road movie based on the novel of the same name by David Seals.
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The road movie gets a smart update with this seriocomic tale of two Cheyenne men traveling from their reservation in Montana to New Mexico. For one of them, Buddy Red Bow (A Martinez), a quick-tempered activist, the journey is a practical one; his sister has been arrested and he is the only family member who can help her out. Buddy has no transportation, so he's forced to ride with Philbert Bono (Gary Farmer), a phlegmatic hulk of a man who is using his 1964 Buick as a vehicle for a spiritual journey of his own. Philbert's easygoing ways and insistence on frequent stops to meditate prove irritating at first to Buddy, but the men reach an accommodation as the trip wears on. Buddy comes to see that blaming the white man and what he sees as system rigged against Native Americans is distracting him from his true mission: to better understand himself and his place in the world.