Dangerous Mission (1954)

75 mins | Drama | 6 March 1954

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HISTORY

The working titles of this picture were Rangers of the North and The Glacier Story . Although the film was originally presented in 3-D, the viewed print was in standard format. The film opens with the following written statement: "The cooperation of the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, and Glacier National Park is gratefully acknowledged." Location shooting took place at Glacier National Park in Montana, according to reviews. According to a Jan 1952 HR news item, RKO purchased a story by Stanley Jones entitled "Glacier National Park" and assigned Irwin Allen to produce it. As Jones's story reportedly was about "an Indian prospector," it has not been determined whether it was related to Dangerous Mission . A HR news item lists William Janssen, Buck Russell and Robert Milton in the cast of Dangerous Mission , but their appearance in the final film has not been confirmed. Philip Ahn also is listed, but he did not appear in the film. RKO borrowed Victor Mature from Twentieth Century-Fox for the ... More Less

The working titles of this picture were Rangers of the North and The Glacier Story . Although the film was originally presented in 3-D, the viewed print was in standard format. The film opens with the following written statement: "The cooperation of the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, and Glacier National Park is gratefully acknowledged." Location shooting took place at Glacier National Park in Montana, according to reviews. According to a Jan 1952 HR news item, RKO purchased a story by Stanley Jones entitled "Glacier National Park" and assigned Irwin Allen to produce it. As Jones's story reportedly was about "an Indian prospector," it has not been determined whether it was related to Dangerous Mission . A HR news item lists William Janssen, Buck Russell and Robert Milton in the cast of Dangerous Mission , but their appearance in the final film has not been confirmed. Philip Ahn also is listed, but he did not appear in the film. RKO borrowed Victor Mature from Twentieth Century-Fox for the production. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
27 Feb 1954.
---
Daily Variety
24 Feb 54
p. 3.
Film Daily
25 Feb 54
p. 10.
Harrison's Reports
27 Feb 54
p. 35.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Jan 52
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Jul 53
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Jul 53
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Jul 53
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Aug 53
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Aug 53
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Feb 54
p. 19.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Feb 54
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
27 Feb 54
p. 2197.
New York Times
6 Mar 54
p. 13.
New Yorker
13 Mar 1954.
---
Variety
24 Feb 54
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
VISUAL EFFECTS
Photog eff
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit prod mgr
Scr supv
Tech adv
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
MUSIC
"One for My Baby and One More for the Road," music by Harold Arlen.
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Rangers of the North
The Glacier Story
Release Date:
6 March 1954
Premiere Information:
World premiere in Salt Lake, UT: 25 February 1954
New York opening: 5 March 1954
Production Date:
late July--early September 1953
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, inc.
Copyright Date:
25 February 1954
Copyright Number:
LP3544
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Widescreen/ratio
3-D
Duration(in mins):
75
Length(in feet):
6,740
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
16641
SYNOPSIS

At a deserted New York nightclub, gangster Johnny Yonkers murders a man named Battaglia, who is playing the tune "One for My Baby" on the piano. Seconds later, a woman enters and, realizing what has happened, flees just as Johnny fires two shots at her. Johnny is charged with Battaglia's murder but plans to plead self-defense. Aware that the district attorney is looking for the eyewitness, Johnny arranges for a hired killer to find the woman, whose identity he has deduced. Soon after, a man named Matt Hallett arrives at Montana's Glacier National Park and checks in at the large resort hotel. There, Matt meets Mary Tiller, a young Blackfoot woman who works in the gift shop; suspicious ranger Joe Parker; and Paul Adams, a commercial photographer on assignment. Matt also meets cashier Louise Graham, and after she rebuffs his flirtations, sends a telegram to New York stating that "our friend is here." That evening, Matt escorts Mary to a dance at a luxurious house built into the side of a mountain. As Paul, who came with Louise, dances with Mary, Parker shows Matt a wanted poster for Mary's father Katoonai, who is being sought on murder charges. Later, Matt asks Louise to dance, but when the song "One for My Baby" is played on the jukebox, she becomes agitated. Soon after, an avalanche sends rocks cascading into the house, causing the power lines to explode. Parker is impressed when Matt scales the electrical pole outside the house and disables the power. The next day, during a Blackfoot ceremonial dance, Matt invites Louise to go walking and asks her about her ... +


At a deserted New York nightclub, gangster Johnny Yonkers murders a man named Battaglia, who is playing the tune "One for My Baby" on the piano. Seconds later, a woman enters and, realizing what has happened, flees just as Johnny fires two shots at her. Johnny is charged with Battaglia's murder but plans to plead self-defense. Aware that the district attorney is looking for the eyewitness, Johnny arranges for a hired killer to find the woman, whose identity he has deduced. Soon after, a man named Matt Hallett arrives at Montana's Glacier National Park and checks in at the large resort hotel. There, Matt meets Mary Tiller, a young Blackfoot woman who works in the gift shop; suspicious ranger Joe Parker; and Paul Adams, a commercial photographer on assignment. Matt also meets cashier Louise Graham, and after she rebuffs his flirtations, sends a telegram to New York stating that "our friend is here." That evening, Matt escorts Mary to a dance at a luxurious house built into the side of a mountain. As Paul, who came with Louise, dances with Mary, Parker shows Matt a wanted poster for Mary's father Katoonai, who is being sought on murder charges. Later, Matt asks Louise to dance, but when the song "One for My Baby" is played on the jukebox, she becomes agitated. Soon after, an avalanche sends rocks cascading into the house, causing the power lines to explode. Parker is impressed when Matt scales the electrical pole outside the house and disables the power. The next day, during a Blackfoot ceremonial dance, Matt invites Louise to go walking and asks her about her relationship with Paul and why she was upset by the song. While standing on the edge of a cliff, Louise recalls strains of the tune and screams. Matt grabs Louise just as Paul comes looking for her. Later that afternoon, Mary receives an award at the elementary school she once attended, but when she sees her father peering proudly from a trap door in the ceiling, she faints. That evening, at the hotel bar, Elster, an emissary from Johnny posing as a jovial guest, approaches Paul and warns him that the gangster is impatiently waiting for him to eliminate Louise. Nervously, Paul seeks out Louise and asks her to go for a ride, but before they can leave, Parker commandeers him and Matt to help fight a forest fire. As they battle the fire, Matt and Paul are trapped in the flames and Matt saves Paul's life. Upon returning to the lodge, Paul, who is involved in a clandestine affair with Mary, uses his concern for the girl as a pretense to talk to Louise alone. Matt is called to the phone before he can stop Louise from driving away in Paul's car, and after he hangs up, he informs Parker that he is a New York detective and asks the ranger's help in arresting Paul. As Paul and Louise drive along a mountain road, a bulletin from ranger headquarters comes over their car radio, warning that Paul is a dangerous gunman dispatched to kill Louise. Screaming in fear, Louise jumps out of the car and Paul swerves around, trying to run her over. Pushed over the roadside embankment, Louise lands safely in the brush and pulls herself back onto the road, where she is picked up by a motorist and taken to the ranger station. Paul, meanwhile, speeds to Mary's room and informs her that the rangers want to arrest him. Claiming that his car was stolen and used in a robbery, Paul enlists Mary's help in fleeing the park. Matt, meanwhile, takes Louise for a boat ride on a lake and, after confessing that he has fallen in love with her, presses her to testify against Johnny. Upon reaching the lodge, they find a note from Mary, and when a fisherman directs them to Paul's abandoned car, Louise leads Matt to an Indian cave in which she thinks Paul may be hiding. Near the cave, they encounter Katoonai, who fears that Mary and Paul will cut across a dangerous glacier to exit the park. As Mary and Paul approach the glacier, Katoonai sees them and instructs Matt to pin down Paul with gunfire while he climbs onto the ledge above. Paul spots Katoonai, however, and shoots him from his perch, sending him careening to his death. Horrified, Mary struggles with Paul, who throws her against the rocks and takes her hostage, forcing her to continue. Matt and Louise follow, and Mary grapples with Paul again, sending his gun flying into the snow. Matt then jumps Paul, and as the two men fight, Louise reaches for the discarded gun. The added weight causes the snow to crumble, and Louise plummets to an ice shelf below. After throwing Paul onto another ice shelf, Matt, with Mary's help, lowers himself by rope to rescue Louise. Regaining his balance, Paul grabs for the gun and fires at Matt. The noise of the gunshots triggers the collapse of the glacier, causing it to topple over and crush Paul. After tying the rope around Louise's waist, Matt pulls her to safety. Drawn by the sound of gunfire, the rangers then appear, and in relief, Matt and Louise kiss and plan a happy future together. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.