Down 443 this week

The Deadly Companions (1961)

Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.2/10 from 1,100 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 10 critic

Ex-army officer accidentally kills a woman's son, tries to make up for it by escorting the funeral procession through dangerous Indian territory.



(screenplay), (novel)
0Check in

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 35 titles
created 04 Apr 2011
a list of 21 titles
created 17 Aug 2011
list image
a list of 22 titles
created 17 Feb 2012
a list of 47 titles
created 18 Apr 2012
a list of 10 titles
created 16 Feb 2013

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Deadly Companions (1961)

The Deadly Companions (1961) on IMDb 6.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Deadly Companions.





Complete credited cast:
Kit Tildon
Steve Cochran ...
Billy Keplinger
Doctor Acton
James O'Hara ...
Cal, General Store (as Jim O'Hara)
Peter O'Crotty ...
Mayor of Hila City
Billy Vaughan ...
Mead Tildon Jr.


The veteran Civil War Yankee officer Yellowleg saves the cheater Turk in a card game, and together with the gunslinger Billy Keplinger, they ride together to Gila City with the intention of heisting a bank. Yellowleg has a war scar on the head from a man that tried to scalp him and he has been on the trail of his attacker for five years. When bandits rob a store, Yellowleg shoots at the outlaws and accidentally kills the son of the cabaret dancer Kit Tilden and the grieving woman decides to bury her son in the Apache country Siringo, where her husband is also buried. Yellowleg calls Billy and Turk to escort Kitty through the dangerous land. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

escort | scar | spurs | noose | mayor | See more »


An Unholy Alliance




Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

16 February 1962 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Trigger Happy  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Turk talks about creating a "Republic of Freedonia". While most people are aware that this is the name of a fictional country in the film Duck Soup (1933), 'Freedonian' was a term used in the USA after the American Revolution until it was replaced by 'American'. See more »


Yellowleg: You don't know me well enough to hate me that much. Hating is a subject I know a little something about. You got to be careful it don't bite you back. I know somebody who spent five years looking for a man he hated. Hating and wanting revenge was all that kept him alive. He spent all those years tracking that other man down, and when he caught up with him, it was the worst day of his life. He'd get his revenge all right, but then he'd lose the one thing he had to live for.
See more »


Featured in Passion & Poetry: The Early Sam (2010) See more »


When Johnny Comes Marching Home
Music traditional
Lyrics by Patrick Gilmore aka Louis Lambert
Sung by Turk in the bar and at the end
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

They Should Have Died On The Trail
30 October 2011 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The Deadly Companions is one of those star produced vehicles, in this case unofficially by Maureen O'Hara although her brother Charles Fitzsimmons is the nominal producer. According to her memoirs she wanted Brian Keith as her co-star, but Keith wanted Sam Peckinpah to be given his first shot at directing a feature film. O'Hara agreed much to her regret.

The film is an interesting and most adult western. Keith is a Union army veteran whose thrown in with a pair of ex-Confederates, Steve Cochran and Chill Wills. But he's also got a mission to avenge a scar given him by a former Confederate sergeant in a brawl. Still he takes his time as he believes as that revenge is a dish best served cold.

While stopping over at a town where the three are contemplating a bank robbery, some other robbers beat them to it. Keith, Cochran, and Wills shoot it out with the others, but in the process Maureen O'Hara's son is killed by Keith.

The grieving widow is determined to take her son's body back to a place that is now a ghost town and the way is through Apache territory. Keith agrees to accompany her out of obligation, Cochran has his hormones in overdrive and Wills goes along for the ride. These are not three guys I would want to be out on the trail with and they prove it soon enough.

Given all that happens to them and the characters that Peckinpah develops, they all should have died on the trail. There's violence enough in The Deadly Companions, but Peckinpah had not yet developed one of those slow motion violence ballets he would later use to great effect in The Wild Bunch.

Peckinpah didn't like the film, he preferred to think of Ride The High Country as his cinematic debut. O'Hara didn't like the film and doubly didn't like Peckinpah. In this she echoed Charlton Heston who had a similar opinion, though Heston gave Peckinpah his due insofar as talent was concerned. Both thought he had a screw loose. O'Hara also said he didn't have a clue as to how to direct a feature film his experienced crew carried him along. I would say he learned though.

But for this film I have to agree with Sam and Maureen. It really is quite mediocre.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What is Pathécolor? zina-vukin
Billy Vaughn (Meade) papccs
Lucky enough to be there nmcgar
Discuss The Deadly Companions (1961) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: