My previous statement that Mplayer *is* installed may have been inaccurate
The different mplayer packages you find in the repos are different versions of mplayer. So far as I know, they are all dependent on samba.
You do seem to have mplayer installed, because you got the message about the missing libsmbclient.
Mplayer can be compiled with or without support for samba. The default compiling option in mplayer (when it comes to samba) is "autodetect". Because samba was present in the machine where mplayer was compiled (I'm guessing) then mplayer ended up detecting samba and doesn't launch without it.
So far as I know, there are only 2 solutions:
1. You install samba. If you don't want to use it at all, then go to VASM as root, choose SERVICE, the SRVSET, then uncheck the samba box for all the runlevels or those that you use. This way, samba will not run at any time, but mplayer still launches. You only have to spend a bit of hard drive space to have samba installed.
2. You compile mplayer yourself. Because samba isn't present in your box, mplayer will be compiled without support for samba, and you can launch it. (the compiling option --disable-smb forces mplayer to be compiled without support for samba, even if it is present).
I suppose the reason the mplayer versions in the repos are compiled with support for samba is that somebody might actually want to use the samba support. The negative side effect for those who don't want it is that samba must be installed as a dependency. Not that negative, though, because you can always turn off the samba service.
(how many times did I say samba in this post?... One more for the record: SAMBA!)