Mountain Man Hugh Glass: The History of the Revenant

The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge by Michael Punke
Book / Ebook

noun rev·e·nant \ˈre-və-ˌnän, -nənt\

: one that returns after death or a long absence
-Miriam Webster

The Revenant, staring Leo DiCaprio and directed by Alejandro G. Iñárritu, tells the story of a frontiersman on a fur trading expedition in the 1820s who must fight for survival after being mauled by a bear and left for dead by members of his own hunting team. It is based on the book The Revenant by Michael Punke, which itself is based on the story of an actual man named Hugh Glass.

There is very little about Hugh Glass that actually known outside of the fact that he was one of the “mountain men” who, during the turn of the 19th century were drawn out west in pursuit of the lucrative business of fur-trapping. Now, when Europeans came over from the new world, they found themselves awash in animals which they could use for fur trade (mainly beavers). From the boom in resources was developed a new trade of people named “mountain men”. The mountain man was a rare bred (there was usually only about 200-300 total) of person who braved the wild, hostile Native Americans, and the elements for months at a time before they returned to civilization. They even had their own system of medicine, called “frontier medicine, to deal with any injuries that may occur. Sure enough, though, by the 1800s they had hunted the beaver population in the Eastern portion of the country to near extinction. But luckily the United States had just invested in the Louisiana Purchase, which opened up St. Louis to the Rocky Mountains to these trappers. Hugh Glass was one of the men who ventured west to seek his fortune.

The Story of the Revenant (do not continue reading if you want to avoid spoilers …. of American History)

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Oscars 2015: Nominees and their Books

Last month the 2015 Oscar Nominations were released and it was a big day for Hollywood.  “Birdman” and “Grand Budapest Hotel” tied for the most nominations with nine, while “The Imitation Game” received eight.  Several stars like Steve Carell received their first-ever nomination, including Emma Stone and Eddie Redymayne, while Meryl Streep was nominated for the 19th time.

But, as always, there were a number of snubs and surprises.  “The Lego Movie” was ignored for a Best Animated Feature nomination, and actor David Oyelowo was shut out of the Oscars, who has been widely praised for his performance as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in “Selma”.  Director of “Selma”, Ava DuVernay, who was nominated for a Globe, did not receive a nomination, which could have made her the first black female director to do so in Oscar history. The film did make the list of Best Picture nominees, and rapper Common and singer John Legend scored a nomination for best song.

The Academy Awards will take place this Sunday, Feb. 22 in Hollywood, and broadcast live on ABC at 7:30 p.m. Neil Patrick Harris will host.  For a full list of nominees visit here.

With your PSC library card, you can check out the books from the movies nominated:

Who do you want to win? Take our poll:

p.s. Did you know Oscar is made right here in Chicago?! The golden statuettes are cast, moulded, polished and buffed each January by RS Owens & Company, a Chicago-based awards manufacturer since 1982.