6.2/10
216
9 user 3 critic

Smoke Signal (1955)

Passed | | Action, Drama, Western | March 1955 (USA)
A suspected cavalry deserter proves to be resourceful in helping the surviving members of a fort, flee Indians along a dangerous river.

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Writers:

(story and screenplay), (story and screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Brett Halliday
...
Laura Evans
...
Lt. Wayne Ford
...
Capt. Harper
...
Sgt. Miles
Douglas Spencer ...
Garode
...
Cpl. Rogers
...
Pvt. Livingston
...
1st Sgt. Daly (as Robert Wilke)
...
Pvt. Porter (as Bill Phipps)
...
Delche
...
Ute Prisoner
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Storyline

Capt. Harper's cavalry patrol returns to the fort to find it besieged by Ute Indians. The apparent cause is the recapture of Army traitor Brett Halliday, who deserted to the Utes in a previous war; but Brett has a different story. With capture imminent, the only chance for the surviving men (and one woman) is to boat down a wild, uncharted river, where Harper and Halliday must pull together, like it or not. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

river | fort | escape | prisoner | deserter | See All (37) »

Taglines:

FLEEING THE FRENZY OF UTE REVENGE ! (original poster-all caps) See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Western

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

March 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Rauchsignale  »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,000,000, 31 December 1955
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dana Andrews was a replacement for Charlton Heston who was deemed by Universal to be too expensive. See more »

Goofs

Just before the two boats are put back in the river, the Indians attack and a trooper is killed. The dead soldier flinches two times during the rest of the battle. See more »

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User Reviews

Great Scenery
10 August 2012 | by See all my reviews

This otherwise routine western has two things going for it—great red rock scenery and William Talman as the cavalry captain. The scenery speaks for itself, but it's Talman's committed performance that lifts the human element. He makes his by-the-book officer utterly believable. Couple that with his screen time and it's really he who has the starring role. Too bad he settled into his long-running D.A. role on Perry Mason; then too, despite his semi-good guy role here, no one from that era could do bug-eyed psychos as well as Talman.

At the same time, it's too bad Andrews couldn't get motivated for his role. He pretty much picks up a paycheck and leaves it at that. But then a Universal western is a comedown for this former TCF movie star, and it shows. It's also pretty much a ditto for Laurie who tags along in indifferent fashion, this not surprisingly being her last film for Universal. Good thing the supporting cast includes so many capable, familiar faces— Stone, Wilke, Jones—to help save the acting day.

Frankly, the plot seems more complicated than the script could lucidly handle, then again, maybe that's just me. But one thing with most westerns—you can enjoy the scenery and action without having to follow the plot. And that appears the case here. On the whole, the centerpiece action on the river is well done with only a few blended process shots. And boy, I really jumped when the one boat suddenly struck a rock in totally realistic fashion.

Anyway, as a western, the movie has its compensations without being anything special.


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