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Sitting Bull (1954)

Approved | | Western | 6 October 1954 (USA)
A cavalry officer sympathetic to the wronged Sioux fixes a meeting between Chief Sitting Bull and President Grant but a dishonest Indian Agent and a hateful General Custer test the Sioux's patience, threatening to derail the peace-talks.


Sidney Salkow


Jack DeWitt (screenplay), Sidney Salkow (screenplay)

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Complete credited cast:
Dale Robertson ... Major Robert 'Bob' Parrish
Mary Murphy ... Kathy Howell
J. Carrol Naish ... Sitting Bull
John Litel ... Gen. Wilford Howell
Joel Fluellen Joel Fluellen ... Sam
Iron Eyes Cody ... Crazy Horse
John Hamilton ... President Ulysses S. Grant
Douglas Kennedy ... Col. Custer
William Tannen ... O'Connor
William Hopper ... Charles Wentworth (as Bill Hopper)
Thomas Browne Henry Thomas Browne Henry ... Indian Agent Webber (as Tom Brown Henry)


Chief Sitting Bull of the Sioux tribe is forced by the Indian-hating General Custer to react with violence, resulting in the famous Last Stand at Little Bighorn. Parrish, a friend to the Sioux, tries to prevent the bloodshed, but is court- martialed for "collaborating" with the enemy. Sitting Bull, however, manages to intercede with President Grant on Parrish's behalf. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Biggest Battle That Ever Shook the West!




Approved | See all certifications »



Mexico | USA



Release Date:

6 October 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das letzte Gefecht See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)| 4-Track Stereo


Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


J. Carrol Naish's portrayal of Sitting Bull was adapted into cartoon form by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera as Crazy Coyote in a Huckleberry Hound cartoon. See more »


Back of Mary's dress shows an obvious zipper. See more »


[first lines]
Sitting Bull: These are the Black Hills of Dakota. The Sioux Indians named this land. It is their word for "friendly." There are seven warrior tribes in the Sioux Nation. And I have prayed the Dakota and its hills would be too rough for the white man and his plows. But, once again, the white man comes. I watch their coming with a sad heart. There are few now, but I know that many will come for they seek the white man's treasure... gold.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the opening titles, the film's 'Technical Advisor and Indian Costumes' is credited to 'Iron Eyes Cody' who is also parenthetically credited as being a '(Famous T.V. Star)'. See more »


Featured in Reel Injun (2009) See more »


Great Spirit
Music and Lyrics by Max Rich
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User Reviews

Heroic confrontation between Sioux chief and US cavalry , including battle of Little Big Horn
15 January 2007 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

The picture concerns Sitting Bull (J. Carrol Naish) , celebrated chief and mystic of the Hunkpapa Sioux and Major Robert Parrish (Dale Robertson) . Parrish clashes Colonel Custer (Douglas Kennedy) and his superiors . He's degraded and sent an Indian reservation where the starving natives are mistreated and suffering extreme famine . Meanwhile , being developed a loving triangle between his girlfriend (Mary Murphy) and a war journalist (William Hooper) . Later on , he is appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant (John Hamilton) to achieve a peace treatise with Sitting Bull to attempt to prevent the bloodshed and he then fights a dangerous duel against Crazy Horse (Iron Heyes Cody) . Parrish helps Indians and is accused as a traitor , being court-martialed for "collaborating" with the enemy . Chief Sitting Bull of the Sioux tribe is forced by the Indian-hating General Custer to react with violence , resulting in the known Last Stand at Little Bighorn .

This exciting movie contains western action , romance , shoot-outs and spectacular battles . The yarn was shot outside of Mexico City and in the Churubusco Azteca studios . Washed-out print , the film needs urgently a perfect remastering . It appears as a technical adviser and designer Indian costumes , a secondary actor named Iron Eyes Cody , usual player as Indian roles (Great Sioux Massacre , A man called Horse) , though with Sicilian origin . The motion picture was regularly directed by Sidney Salkow .

The film is a fiction , but partially based on real events . The reality happened in December 1873 when the Commissioner of Indian Affairs directed all Sioux bands to enter reservations by the end of January 1876 or be declared hostile . Many bands of Sioux did not meet this deadline and were attacked by US troops . Crazy Horse and his Oglala people moved north to join forces with Sitting Bull , by the spring of 1876 some 3000 Teton Sioux and Northern Cheyenne warriors had assembled at Sitting Bull's camp in the valley of the Little Big Horn in Montana. On 25 June 1876 Crazy Horse and other war chiefs led the allied warriors against General Custer and his seventh Cavalry , Custer and all the man under his direct command were killed . This victory , however , brought relentless retaliation from the army and Sioux were scattered . Sitting Bull and his followers fled to Canada and stayed there until July 1881 , when he returned to the US and surrendered at Fort Buford , Montana . After he was placed on a South Dakota reservation . For a year Sitting Bull went a tour with Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show . He continued to regard himself as chief of his people and he earned the enmity of an Indian agent . On 25 December 1890 , Indian policemen went to take the chief , his followers tried to prevent this and in the struggle he was shot dead .

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