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Red Tomahawk (1967)

Approved | | Action, Drama, War | 1 January 1967 (USA)
An army captain tries to convince the inhabitants of a village to hand him over two machine-guns so he can attack the indians.


R.G. Springsteen


Steve Fisher (screenplay), Andrew Craddock (story)


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Howard Keel ... Capt. Tom York
Joan Caulfield ... Dakota Lil McCoy
Broderick Crawford ... Columbus Smith
Scott Brady ... Ep Wyatt
Wendell Corey ... Sy Elkins
Richard Arlen ... Telegrapher
Tom Drake ... Bill Kane
Tracy Olsen Tracy Olsen ... Sal
Ben Cooper ... Lieutenant Drake
Don 'Red' Barry ... Bly - Deserter (as Donald Barry)
Gerald Jann Gerald Jann ... Wu Sing
Regis Parton ... Prospector (as Reg Parton)
Roy Jenson ... Prospector
Dan White ... Ned Crone
Henry Wills ... Samuels


Captain Tom York is dispatched to contact General Custer at Little Big Horn. There he finds the massacred 7th Cavalry and thousands of Sioux roaming the Black Hills. He rushes to warn the other regiments heading for Custer's location but needs to find a telegraph office in the nearest town. That town is Deadwood. The townsfolk seem oblivious to Custer's fate and to the fact that thousands of Sioux are coming their way. The telegraph is out of order and the locals mistake Captain York for a deserter. After a friend, Ep Wyatt, vouches for him, the misunderstanding is cleared up. York gets wind that big man Columbus Smith, whom York had a fistfight with, has a pair of Gatling Guns hidden nearby. When York and Ep Wyatt approach Smith, he reveals that saloon beauty and roulette dealer Dakota Lil McCoy actually owns the guns. In the saloon, Lil initially denies having Gatling Guns but eventually relents to the demands to surrender the guns at Captain York's request. The captain figures that... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Red Tomahawk strikes and the prairie blazes with the West's worst massacre! (original poster) See more »


Action | Drama | War | Western


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

1 January 1967 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Der blutige Westen See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

A.C. Lyles Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Pathécolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Betty Hutton and Howard Keel, co-stars of the critical and financial hit, Annie Get Your Gun (1950), were set to team again. However, when filming started, Miss Hutton could not keep up with the fast-paced schedule (10 to 14 days). She was fired and replaced by Joan Caulfield, who was Betty's colleague on the Paramount lot during the 1940s. See more »

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User Reviews

A.C. Lyles Western number 9
1 May 2019 | by kevinolzakSee all my reviews

1966's "Red Tomahawk" was the ninth entry in a series of 13 Paramount 'B' Westerns courtesy producer A.C. Lyles from 1963 to 1967, designed to meet huge demand in Europe but quick playoff in the US, featuring a multitude of familiar players in need of a decent paycheck. Several were shot back to back, usually two weeks apiece, which is why this attempted reunion between top billed Howard Keel and Betty Hutton from "Annie Get Your Gun" did not come to fruition, Betty's inability to keep up the swift pace resulting in the casting of Joan Caulfield instead. Keel's Captain Tom York is a government agent in 1876 South Dakota, the first to discover the massacre of Custer's cavalry at Little Big Horn by Sitting Bull's Sioux warriors, making his way to nearby Deadwood to message authorities about his findings. With the telegraph lines down and the townspeople unusually hostile, York only has two allies to help him recover a pair of Gatling guns to help the army defeat the insurrection. It's nice to see Scott Brady as a good guy for a change, joined by one time only Lyles veteran Broderick Crawford and saloon girl Joan Caulfield, still an eyeful in one of her few movie roles (only six after 1951) amid much television work. Among the townsmen there are really no standouts, Wendell Corey appears to be the main villain before getting killed off in ten minutes, Richard Arlen's telegrapher has little to do, Donald Barry's deserter and Roy Jenson's prospector in and out rather quickly. Tom Drake's character acts like a preacher and aids Captain York, and Ben Cooper ("Johnny Guitar") shows up at the end for the action packed climax. The rampaging Indians are granted no personality so real tension is sadly lacking, but it does seem to contain more battles than other Lyles oaters. Joan Caulfield would return for the producer's last Paramount Western "Buckskin," her natural beauty and believability making more of the too small part of a widow weary of the violence that claimed the lives of her husband and child. This was the one entry that seemed to have fallen off the face of the earth after its theatrical run, few TV screenings and no video release, but all 13 are easily available for dedicated film buffs.

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