Independent Lens: Facing the Storm: The Story of the American Bison

About This Episode


Tens of millions of bison once roamed North America. For 10,000 years, Native Americans on the Great Plains had a sacred relationship with the animal, relying on it for food, clothing, and shelter. But with the arrival of European Americans and their Manifest Destiny, ready to conquer the West and all of its resources, bison became nearly extinct, and Plains culture was forever changed.

Facing the Storm documents the harrowing history of human relations with the largest land mammal on the continent and thoroughly explores the future of bison in the twenty-first century. It graphically exposes the annual slaughter of bison outside of Yellowstone National Park. Finally, the film explores the epic vision -- and monumental obstacles -- to restore bison to immense tracts of the Great Plains.