Cast & Crew
In the Dakotas around 1868, Cheyenne Chief Yellow Wolf and his son Little Wolf travel on foot from their destitute village to the town of Sand Creek because their tribe has so few horses. The townspeople stare at them coldly as they approach the office of Capt. George, a cowardly, heavy-drinking U.S. Cavalry officer. Yellow Wolf explains that with winter approaching, his people need warm clothing, but George dismisses his concerns, stating that he cares only about what "his people need." George then reveals that he has been given orders to send the Cheyenne to a reservation in Oklahoma. Yellow Wolf replies that the Black Hills region is home to the Cheyenne, and that he is prepared to trade recently discovered gold for assurances that his people will be left in peace. George reluctantly agrees to the trade, but after the two Indians leave, sends his man Garvin to shoot Yellow Wolf in the street. Marshal Tate, who loves Yellow Wolf's daughter Pretty Willow and believes that the Cheyenne should be allowed to remain on their lands, tries to caution George that Little Wolf may send warriors to avenge the chief's death. The captain and the rest of the townspeople dismiss this warning, demanding that Tate turn in his star. Disgusted, Tate complies and informs his nephew Billy, who has lived with him since the Indians killed his parents, that they soon will leave Sand Creek. Billy protests the move, and Amy Porter, a widow who looks after Billy and runs the local boardinghouse, declares that she would be a better wife for Tate than Pretty Willow, a "dirty, uncivilized" savage. Tate's gentle attempt to persuade Amy that her hatred stems from the loneliness of widowhood ends in an argument, and he storms out of the house. Determined to run away from Tate during the night, Billy climbs out his window just as the Cheyenne start to raid Cavalry headquarters for guns and horses. While trying to escape, the boy is shot and killed. After Billy's funeral, George approaches Tate in a panic. Having stolen most of the town's horses and weapons, the Cheyenne, he fears, will massacre everyone. Tate remarks sadly that to save the townspeople, he must kill Little Wolf, but when he follows the Indian to a deserted location, he finds he is unable to pull the trigger. Little Wolf places some gold near a tree, and after he leaves, Tate carries it back to the boardinghouse. Angry at Tate for refusing her love, Amy brings the gold straight to George, who suspects that Tate has made a deal with the Cheyenne. At George's prompting, Garvin tells Little Wolf that Tate is planning to kill him. In exchange for this information, the Cavalry, he lies, wants to accept Yellow Wolf's proposal to trade gold for Cheyenne lands. Having learned during one of her secret meetings with Tate that he had planned to kill her brother, Pretty Willow confirms Garvin's accusation. Little Wolf tells Garvin that he will meet George after settling his score with Tate, not realizing that George plans to ambush both men at their dueling place. The next morning, Pretty Willow and Little Wolf meet Tate at the appointed spot near the river. As Tate and Little Wolf battle each other with knives, Capt. George and his men surround the area and begin shooting. Tate falls in the river, apparently dead, and Little Wolf is shot while attacking Garvin. Back in town, Amy looks after the grief-stricken Pretty Willow, an experience which dissolves her hatred and fills her with remorse. With the arrival of Cavalry reinforcements, George proceeds with his plan to place the Cheyenne on an Oklahoma reservation, but first he orders Pretty Willow to show him where the tribe's gold is hidden. When she takes him there, Tate appears and kills George in a gun battle. The Cheyenne are nonetheless forced to leave their homes, and as Pretty Willow, now reunited with Tate, watches them go, she wonders aloud what white men would do if some new race tried to take their lands. Would they fight like the Cheyenne? she asks. Just like the Cheyenne, Tate replies.
Frank De Kova
Norman Retchin's onscreen credit reads: "Produced and written by Norman Retchin." Although reviewers generally did not praise the film, they did comment positively on its "contemporary" depiction of Native Americans. In 1864, at Sand Creek, CO, volunteers killed some two hundred Cheyenne Indians, most of them women and children, who thought they were under military protection. In 1879, over two hundred northern Cheyenne Indians under Chiefs Dull Knife, Wild Hog and Little Wolf surrendered to government forces and were sent to Fort Reno, OK, as prisoners. Nearly half of this group was killed in escape attempts. It is possible that Ride Out for Revenge was based, in part, on these historical events.
The film was partially shot on location at Sonora, CA according to a February 1957 Hollywood Reporter news item. An April 1957 Hollywood Reporter news item include Ben Ahma, Alex Ball, Smokey Chism, Raven Gray Eagle, Cherokee Landrum, Dorothy Skyeagle, Helen Skyeagle, Princess Wyhremah and Lani MacIntyre in the cast, but their appearance in the film cannot be confirmed.
Released in United States Fall October 1957
Released in United States Fall October 1957