Drum Beat (1954)

107 mins | Western | 13 November 1954

Director:

Delmer Daves

Producer:

Delmer Daves

Cinematographer:

Peverell Marley

Production Designer:

Leo Kuter
Full page view
HISTORY

This was the first production of Alan Ladd's own company. The main title reads: "Delmer Daves' Drum Beat ." The film was shot around Sedona and in the Coconino National Forest, Arizona. Time reported that the film was made at a low cost of $1,100,000. The opening titles state that the story is based upon historical fact and that fictional incidents and characters have been introduced only where necessary to dramatize the truth. This was the first film in which Charles Buchinsky was billed as Charles ... More Less

This was the first production of Alan Ladd's own company. The main title reads: "Delmer Daves' Drum Beat ." The film was shot around Sedona and in the Coconino National Forest, Arizona. Time reported that the film was made at a low cost of $1,100,000. The opening titles state that the story is based upon historical fact and that fictional incidents and characters have been introduced only where necessary to dramatize the truth. This was the first film in which Charles Buchinsky was billed as Charles Bronson. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
6 Nov 1954.
---
Daily Variety
9 Apr 1954.
---
Daily Variety
3 Nov 1954.
---
Film Daily
10 Nov 1954.
---
Harrison's Reports
6 Nov 54
p. 179.
Hollywood Citizen-News
11 Nov 1954.
---
Hollywood Reporter
4 Jun 1954
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Jul 1954
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Nov 54
p. 4.
Los Angeles Examiner
11 Nov 1954.
---
Los Angeles Times
11 Nov 1954.
---
Motion Picture Daily
8 Nov 1954.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
6 Nov 54
p. 201.
New York Times
18 Nov 54
p. 42.
The Exhibitor
17 Nov 54
p. 3872.
Time
22 Nov 1954.
---
Variety
3 Nov 54
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
2d unit dir
2d unit asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITER
Written by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
2nd unit photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATOR
Set dec
COSTUMES
Ward
MUSIC
Orch
SOUND
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
PRODUCTION MISC
Tech adv
Tech adv
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col consultant
SOURCES
SONGS
"Drum Beat," music by Victor Young, lyrics by Ned Washington.
DETAILS
Release Date:
13 November 1954
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 10 November 1954
Production Date:
early June--mid July 1954
Copyright Claimant:
Ladd Enterprises, Inc.
Copyright Date:
13 November 1954
Copyright Number:
LP5775
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound Recording
Color
Warnercolor
Widescreen/ratio
CinemaScope
Duration(in mins):
107
Length(in feet):
9,660
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
17087
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In 1872, Indian fighter Johnny Mackay goes to Washington to discuss with President Ulysses S. Grant the violence along the California-Oregon border caused by a renegade Modoc Indian chief, Captain Jack. Grant appoints Johnny Peace Commissioner and asks him to convince Captain Jack, whom he has known a long time, to return to the reservation. Johnny escorts Nancy Meek, the niece of a retired army colonel, back west. On the stagecoach journey between Sacramento and Oregon, they are attacked by Indians led by Modoc Jim, one of Captain Jack's men. After stage driver Bill Satterwhite's sweetheart, Lily White, is killed, Bill swears vengeance on all Modocs. When Johnny drives Nancy to her uncle's ranch, they discover that it has been raided and burned, and her aunt and uncle killed. At Fort Klamath, Toby and Manok, the daughter and son of the old Modoc chief, tell Johnny that most of the Modoc want peace but are unable to control Captain Jack. After Toby proposes that Johnny kill Captain Jack, he replies that he intends to talk peace. When Toby, who is in love with Johnny, suggests that if she becomes his wife, no Modoc will ever harm him, Johnny gently turns down her offer. At Lost River, Captain Jack's territory, Johnny reminds Captain Jack that he signed a treaty agreeing to live on the reservation. However, Captain Jack, wants to take over all of Lost River and drive out the settlers. As Johnny leaves, Bill rides up and starts shooting, killing Modoc Jim and causing the other Indians to go on a killing rampage. The Modoc take refuge at a mountain stronghold, and when the Army, led by General ... +


In 1872, Indian fighter Johnny Mackay goes to Washington to discuss with President Ulysses S. Grant the violence along the California-Oregon border caused by a renegade Modoc Indian chief, Captain Jack. Grant appoints Johnny Peace Commissioner and asks him to convince Captain Jack, whom he has known a long time, to return to the reservation. Johnny escorts Nancy Meek, the niece of a retired army colonel, back west. On the stagecoach journey between Sacramento and Oregon, they are attacked by Indians led by Modoc Jim, one of Captain Jack's men. After stage driver Bill Satterwhite's sweetheart, Lily White, is killed, Bill swears vengeance on all Modocs. When Johnny drives Nancy to her uncle's ranch, they discover that it has been raided and burned, and her aunt and uncle killed. At Fort Klamath, Toby and Manok, the daughter and son of the old Modoc chief, tell Johnny that most of the Modoc want peace but are unable to control Captain Jack. After Toby proposes that Johnny kill Captain Jack, he replies that he intends to talk peace. When Toby, who is in love with Johnny, suggests that if she becomes his wife, no Modoc will ever harm him, Johnny gently turns down her offer. At Lost River, Captain Jack's territory, Johnny reminds Captain Jack that he signed a treaty agreeing to live on the reservation. However, Captain Jack, wants to take over all of Lost River and drive out the settlers. As Johnny leaves, Bill rides up and starts shooting, killing Modoc Jim and causing the other Indians to go on a killing rampage. The Modoc take refuge at a mountain stronghold, and when the Army, led by General Gilliam, attempts to storm the stronghold, they are defeated and have to retreat to the fort. Later, General Canby is instructed by the Secretary of War to cease all operations against the Modoc and make another attempt to achieve peace, but a peace with honor. Manok and Toby arrange a meeting between Captain Jack, Johnny, Canby and other interested parties, and both sides agree to come unarmed. Johnny, who has fallen in love with Nancy, asks her to promise that she will leave if the peace talks fail. At the meeting, Captain Jack reiterates his demand that all the settlers leave the Lost River area, then suddenly draws a gun and starts shooting at the peace party. Toby is killed while trying to protect Johnny, who is wounded in the attack. President Grant then authorizes Johnny to track down the renegades. As Johnny rides out with the soldiers, Captain Jack and two of his braves, Scarface Charlie and Bogus Charlie, split up, and Johnny pursues Captain Jack while Bill and Manok go after the others. Manok catches and kills Bogus Charlie, but Scarface Charlie suprises Bill by telling him that they will surrender. After initially being pinned down by Captain Jack's rifle fire, Johnny overpowers him in a rapidly flowing stream and takes him back to the fort as a prisoner of war. After Captain Jack's trial, as preparations are made for his hanging, Johnny visits him in his cell where they discuss meeting one day in their respective heavens and part as friends. After peace finally comes to the area, Johnny and Nancy plan a life together. +

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

TOP SEARCHES

CASABLANCA

During World War II, Casablanca, Morocco is a waiting point for throngs of desperate refugees fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe. Exit visas, which are necessary to leave the country, are at ... >>

CITIZEN KANE

Seventy-year-old newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane dies in his palatial Florida home, Xanadu, after uttering the single word “Rosebud.” While watching a newsreel summarizing the years during which Kane ... >>

REAR WINDOW

Laid up with a broken leg during the height of summer, renowned New York magazine photographer L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries enters his last week of home confinement, bored and ... >>

RAGING BULL

In 1941, at a boxing match in Cleveland, Ohio, pandemonium breaks out when Jake La Motta, an up-and-coming young boxer, loses a decision to Jimmy Reeves, suffering his first ... >>

CITY LIGHTS

At an outdoor dedication ceremony, a tramp is discovered sleeping in the arms of a statue as it is being unveiled before a crowd. He is chased into ... >>

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.