Dangerous Mission (1954) starring Victor Mature, Piper Laurie, William Bendix, Vincent Price, Betta St. John, Harry Cheshire, Steve Darrell directed by Louis King Movie Review

Dangerous Mission (1954)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Piper Laurie in Dangerous Mission (1954)

A Mindless Mission

When Louise Graham (Piper Laurie) witnesses a mob killing in an empty New York nightclub she fears for her life and goes on the run to Montana where she hopes to hide out and start a new life in the Montana Glacier National park where her friend Mary Tiller (Betta St. John) works. Unbeknown to Louise is that the mob have found out where she is and have hired a man to go there incognito to kill her. At the same time the DA fearful for Louise's life also send one of their men incognito to watch over her. So photographer Paul Adams (Vincent Price) and civilian Matt Hallett (Victor Mature) arrive at the hotel where Louise now works with both showing an interest in her. But matters are made even more complicated by her friend Mary's father who is a wanted criminal hiding up in the nearby hills.

"Dangerous Mission" has one intention and that is to toy with us over who the hit man is. Following the damp squib of a night club murder scene we witness the mob men talking to someone in an arm chair, hiring them to kill the witness. In the next scene we see Matt driving to Montana and so we are expected to wonder whether Matt is the hired gun. That would be all fine and dandy if it wasn't for some clumsy casting because we are given two actors; Victor Mature and Vincent Price and in my book whilst both could play bad guys only one is the candidate for being the good guy in this sort of movie and so immediately the mystery is ruined.

Betta St. John in Dangerous Mission (1954)

So what else is there to say about "Dangerous Mission"; well there is the novelty of this being a 1950s movie shot in 3D and that means we have a few scenes thrown in to the mix such as an avalanche scene which are meant to impress. Aside from that there are very few surprises when it comes to how the movie plays out thanks to a lot of less than subtle hints to what is going to happen, such as the mention that Mary's father is hiding out in the hills, a wanted killer although one who is a good guy as he killed in self defence.

And then there is the acting which sadly with Victor Mature in a lead role is a case of stand like and oak, smile and deliver his lines. Don't get me wrong as in the right movie Victor Mature could be good but this sort of movie just highlights his stiffness. Sadly Vincent Price comes across as stiff as well almost seeming to tone down his acting skills to fit in with Mature's. And then there is Piper Laurie and Betta St. John who both look absolutely lovely, in fact they are the loveliest thing about this movie but sadly it is the case that their characters are weak and are not given the chance to do anything more than look beautiful.

What this all boils down to is that "Dangerous Mission" is two things; it is a routine 1950s mystery movie and an obvious one at that. Aside from that well if you want a movie which shows of some 1950s fashion then "Dangerous Mission" might entertain thanks to Piper Laurie and Betta St. John who both look absolutely stunning.