7.1/10
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Smoke Signals (1998)

Trailer
1:04 | Trailer
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
Learn more

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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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the American Film Institute's 2000 list of the 500 movies nominated for the Top 100 Funniest American Movies. See more »

Goofs

When 12-year-old Victor beats Thomas up right after his dad leaves, he is wearing a white and red shirt under his button-up shirt. After he begins running, the undershirt changes to a completely red muscle-tee. See more »

Quotes

Victor Joseph: Thomas, don't you even know how to be a real Indian? How many times have you seen "Dances with Wolves" anyways? 100... 200 times? Oh jesus Thomas, you have seen it that many times?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Support HONOR/EARTH campaign. Support American Indian College Fund. Contributions from the profits of this film will be made to each of these organizations. See more »

Connections

Featured in Reel Injun (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Reservation Blues
(1995)
Written and Performed by Jim Boyd
Lyrics by Sherman Alexie
Courtesy of Thunderwolf Records
See more »

User Reviews

A movie not to be missed
12 August 1998 | by kim-oSee all my reviews

Smoke Signals (the efforts of Sherman Alexie, Chris Eyre and the cast of fabulous actors) shows in rich, humorous detail what life is like for young Indians today. It is an insider's view of reservation basketball games and the rituals of frybread. Its characters don't bring themselves (and the story) down with self pity. Instead they look to the lighter side of history with references to Columbus and Gen. Custer. The story is simple. Two young men, Victor and Thomas, embark on a trip to Phoenix to retrieve the ashes of Victor's father. Victor is angry at his father for leaving his family and angry with himself for the grudge that he carries. Through the help of Thomas and his father's final friend Suzy, Victor is able to find resolution and peace. The acting, particularly Gary Farmer as Arnold Joseph (Victor's father) and Evan Adams (Thomas Builds-the-Fire) are outstanding. In fact, I had to see it a second time to catch all the plot because Evan Adams completely stole the show for me!


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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

Gross USA:

$6,745,362

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$6,745,362
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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