The tragic true story behind Martin Scorsese’s new film, Killers of the Flower Moon

Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro star in this Western crime saga.
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When it comes to a Martin Scorsese film, you’re coming to it for three things: the cast (think Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro), the gangsters (and the life they lead) or the very real (and very true) real-life inspirations that he draws from.

WATCH BELOW: Killers of the Flower Moon – Official Trailer

That is, in essence, what you can expect from Scorsese’s latest film, Killers of the Flower Moon, starring both Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro in what has been described as a “sobering appraisal of America’s relationship with Indigenous peoples,” per Rotten Tomatoes.

Based on a true story, the film unpacks the serial murder of members of the Osage tribe in 1920s Oklahoma; a string of brutal crimes that were later known as the Reign of Terror, lasting from 1921 to 1926.

Here, we’ve gathered everything you need to know about Killers of the Flower Moon, including when and where to watch it in Australia, and the true story that inspired it all.

killers of the flower moon cast
Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro star in Killers of the Flower Moon. (Credit: Apple TV+)

Where can I watch Killers of the Flower Moon in Australia?

Killers of the Flower Moon premiered in Australian cinemas, and around the world, on Thursday, October 19 last year.

And, since the film is produced by Apple Studios, Killers of the Flower Moon will be available to stream on Apple TV+ from January 12, if you prefer to watch it from home.

Stream Killers of the Flower Moon now on Apple TV+ with a 7-day free trial. Subscribe here.

What is Killers of the Flower Moon about?

The official synopsis reads: “At the turn of the 20th century, oil brought a fortune to the Osage Nation, who became some of the richest people in the world overnight.

“The wealth of these Native Americans immediately attracted white interlopers, who manipulated, extorted, and stole as much Osage money as they could before resorting to murder.”

Based on a true story and told through the improbable romance of Ernest Burkhart (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Mollie Kyle (Lily Gladstone), Killers of the Flower Moon is an epic Western crime saga, where real love crosses paths with unspeakable betrayal.

Also starring Robert De Niro and Jesse Plemons, the film is directed by Academy Award winner Martin Scorsese from a screenplay by Eric Roth and Martin Scorsese, based on David Grann’s best-selling book.

killers of the flower moon
The film is based on a true story. (Credit: Apple TV+)

Is Killers of the Flower Moon based on a true story?

Killers of the Flower Moon is based on the tragic Osage Indian murders, a series of murders of Native Americans in Osage County, Oklahoma that took place in the early 20th century.

The killings primarily targeted members of the Osage Nation, who had become wealthy due to oil discoveries on their land, and were part of a wider conspiracy involving corrupt officials and individuals seeking to gain control of the valuable oil wealth.

The case led to a significant federal investigation, and the involvement of the FBI, and highlighted the exploitation and injustice faced by Native American communities during that era.

David Grann unpacks the true crime cases in his nonfiction book, Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI, while also offering historical context for the Osage Nation and the investigations that took place.

Who is cast in Killers of the Flower Moon?

Featuring an impressive A-list cast, Killers of the Flower Moon stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, Jesse Plemons, Lily Gladstone, Tantoo Cardinal and Brendan Fraser.

Joining them are John Lithgow, Cara Jade Myers, JaNae Collins, Jillian Dion, William Belleau, Louis Cancelmi, Tatanka Means, Michael Abbot Jr., Pat Healy, Scott Shepard, Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson.

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