12 user 3 critic

Slaughter Trail (1951)

Approved | | Western | 15 October 1951 (USA)
Three outlaws rob the stage and then flee. When their horses give out they murder some Indians to get fresh ones. But this puts the Indians on the war path and they have to take refuge in ... See full summary »



(screen play)


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Cast overview:
Capt. Dempster
Ike Vaughn
Lorabelle Larkin
Sgt. Macintosh
Lt. Morgan
Terry Gilkyson ...


Three outlaws rob the stage and then flee. When their horses give out they murder some Indians to get fresh ones. But this puts the Indians on the war path and they have to take refuge in an Army fort to avoid them. The Indians then arrive offering peace if the three men are turned over to them. The fort's commanding Officer wants peace but the rules say the men must be tried in a white man's court leaving the Indians no choice but to attack. Written by Maurice VanAuken <mvanauken@a1access.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

15 October 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El sendero de la muerte  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Howard Da Silva was removed from the cast of this film as a result of his being blacklisted for leftist sympathies. Brian Donlevy replaced him. See more »


When Ike Vaughn (Gig Young) flees the fort with young Nancy Dempster, he runs and jumps on his horse and rides out of the fort through the open gate, and he is supposedly holding Nancy all the time with his left arm. But the action is rather violent, and the way he holds Nancy, you can only see her back. But her arms and legs flop around like a rag doll, which is clearly what he is holding, and not the real girl. See more »


Woman Dancer: You know, I can look into your eyes and see you have led a gay, romantic life. If I'm not too personal, what do you do for a living?
Rufus Black: I sell coffins!
See more »


London Bridge Is Falling Down
Performed by Virginia Grey, Lois Hall, Robin Fletcher and the children
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A sublimely stupid western
11 March 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Leonard Maltin must have delicate ears. He called 1951's "Slaughter Trail" soundtrack "indescribably awful." Something "indescribably awful" to hear is a Siamese cat giving birth. The soundtrack is like the Sons of the Pioneers with below-par lyrics, with an occasional zinger mixed in.

This is a sublimely stupid Western, where the "Indians" wear obvious wigs, the makeup people painted their chests but forgot their backs, the soldiers throw up their arms and fall and die before the sound effects tell the viewer they've been hit, the leading lady smooches with a highwayman and her very obvious lipstick is on his face and yet nobody comments on it. When asked if anyone was killed during a robbery, Andy Devine says "just the stagecoach driver. No one important"(!?)

Another line that seems to indicate the film was meant as a satire (or maybe just poorly written). Devine asks if an Indian had been hit. Soldier: "No, but he won't be riding a horse for a longgg time." I'd pass on this one. The western genre was big in the 50's because so many social issues could be discussed in the context of the old west rather than cause controversy by discussing them in a modern setting. But then there was always a film just trying to make a buck off the popularity of the genre. This is one of those films.

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