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Chuka (1967)

 -  Western  -  23 July 1967 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 395 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 8 critic

While Indians besiege a U.S. Army fort in 1876, residents of the fort a gunfighter, a stagecoach driver, two Mexican women, and a motley company of soldiers try to come to terms with their pasts.

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Title: Chuka (1967)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Chuka
...
Sgt. Otto Hahnsbach
...
Colonel Stuart Valois
...
Señora Veronica Kleitz
...
Lou Trent
...
Señorita Helena Chavez (as Angela Dorian)
...
Major Benson
...
Spivey
Hugh Reilly ...
Captain Carrol
Barry O'Hara ...
Slim - Cook
...
Jake Baldwin
Marco López ...
Hanu (as Marco Antonio)
Gerald York ...
Lieutenant Daly
Herlinda Del Carmen ...
Indian Girl
Lucky Carson ...
Stage Driver
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Storyline

While Indians besiege a U.S. Army fort in 1876, residents of the fort a gunfighter, a stagecoach driver, two Mexican women, and a motley company of soldiers try to come to terms with their pasts.

Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Of his kind Chuka's the best there is. At fighting. At loving. And when it had to be - at killing!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

23 July 1967 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Chuka: The Gunfighter  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Pathécolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Trent: Wake me up when it's time to die.
Chuka: Are you scared of dyin', Lou?
Trent: Not particularly. It just comes an inconvenient time.
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User Reviews

 
Gunslinger Rod Taylor (Chuka) detours at a doomed fort because of a lost love
27 November 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Rod Taylor plays Chuka (pronounced Chucka), a noted gunman making his way to a new life and Montana when he stops to help a stagecoach threatened by Arapahos. On the stage is beautiful Luciana Paluzzi, a Mexican woman who, despite her love for him, married as her family prescribed.

They all end up at a fort headed by a former British officer (John Mills) with a loyal sergeant (Ernest Borgnine) holding things together. On hand are a scout, reliable James Whitmore, and another officer, Louis Hayward, who sneaks in pretty Indian girls.

The story carries little suspense since, at the outset, we learn that the cavalry has been wiped out by an Indian attack. The Indians are starving and threatening, but the obtuse Colonel Mills refuses to aid them. He seems intent on inviting a doomsday attack to show that this time he won't be falling asleep drunk when it happens. The fort is a dumping ground for any and all cavalry misfits, and at one point they even try an ineffectual mutiny.

This Paramount western does have a big fight at the end, but its main focus is to illuminate as many of the characters as it can prior to the big showdown. Western reality, cavalry reality, and western scenery definitely play little or no part in these character studies. Instead, the characters weave and criss-cross mainly within the stage set's fort. The budget for sets was low. Most of it was probably devoted to paying the all-star cast.

The script doesn't integrate the characters' actions enough to create tension or interest in what happens next. Instead, we have more or less separate characters. The main exception is the love affair of Taylor and Paluzzi and the suspense about what their fates will be. No director could have transformed this into a classic without a far different and better script. In the end, this is not a classic Hollywood western, but it tries hard.

What sticks with me are the following: the John Mills weak Colonel and a dinner party at which he reveals the foibles of his officers; Borgnine's loyalty to Mills and his steadfast soldiering; Paluzzi's smoldering good looks; Whitmore's repartee; Taylor's emotion at winning Paluzzi; and Hayward as a fallen officer who nevertheless maintains some sort of aristocratic bearing.

That's quite enough to make this a watchable western.


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