7.2/10
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134 user 42 critic

Smoke Signals (1998)

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1:05 | Trailer

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Young Indian man Thomas is a nerd in his reservation, wearing oversize glasses and telling everyone stories no-one wants to hear. His parents died in a fire in 1976, and Thomas was saved by... See full summary »

Director:

Chris Eyre

Writers:

Sherman Alexie (book), Sherman Alexie (screenplay)
12 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Adam Beach ... Victor Joseph
Evan Adams ... Thomas Builds-the-Fire
Irene Bedard ... Suzy Song
Gary Farmer ... Arnold Joseph
Tantoo Cardinal ... Arlene Joseph
Cody Lightning ... Young Victor Joseph
Simon Baker ... Young Thomas Builds-the-Fire
Monique Mojica Monique Mojica ... Grandma Builds-the-Fire
John Trudell ... Randy Peone
Chief Leonard George Chief Leonard George ... Lester Fallsapart (as Leonard George)
Michael Greyeyes ... Junior Polatkin
Darwin Haine ... Boo
Michelle St. John ... Velma
Elaine Miles ... Lucy
Cynthia Geary ... Cathy the Gymnast
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Storyline

Young Indian man Thomas is a nerd in his reservation, wearing oversize glasses and telling everyone stories no-one wants to hear. His parents died in a fire in 1976, and Thomas was saved by Arnold. Arnold soon left his family (and his tough son Victor), and Victor hasn't seen his father for 10 years. When Victor hears Arnold has died, Thomas offers him funding for the trip to get Arnold's remains, but only if Thomas can also go with him. Thomas and Victor hit the road. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A new film from the heart of Native America.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some intense images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Canada | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 November 1998 (Iceland) See more »

Also Known As:

This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona See more »

Filming Locations:

Idaho, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$43,574, 28 June 1998, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,719,300, 18 October 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 2018, the United States Library of Congress selected Smoke Signals for preservation in the National Film Registry. See more »

Goofs

When Victor drops Thomas off at his home, you can see the shadow of the rear-view mirror, cast on the truck seat. In the next scene, when Victor stops at his home, the mirror is gone but the bracket is there. See more »

Quotes

[Thomas concludes his story he is trading for a ride]
Thomas Builds-the-Fire: Arnold got arrested, you know. But he got lucky. They charged him with attempted murder. Then they plea-bargained that down to assault with a deadly weapon. Then they plea-bargained that down to being an Indian in the Twentieth Century. Then he got two years in Walla Walla.
Lucy: [to Velma] What do you think?
Velma: I think it's a fine example of the oral tradition.
[laughs]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Any similarity to actual persons, living, dead, or indigenous, is purely coincidental. See more »

Connections

References The Lone Ranger (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

John Wayne's Teeth
Written and Performed by Eaglebear Singers
Lyrics by Sherman Alexie
See more »

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User Reviews

This is a bad movie for Hollywood and almost all the industry because:
2 January 1999 | by zorch-2See all my reviews

The main trouble with Smoke Signals is that after you see it you will be disappointed with not only the rest of the movies or television you are likely to see but also with most of the films you have seen before it.Since too many people haven't seen it you will have to listen to people talk about "what dreams may come",or some such. You can't tell people that a guy sitting on a van giving a traffic report when there is no traffic,is more humorous than most sit-coms.But that is the trouble when a true 10 picture comes out, it tends to drop many of the others a point.If you haven't seen it rent it or better buy it. but be warned that you may be watching another movie and you will think "who needs this ----" i could be watching "Smoke signals"


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