Synopsis: Brought up by a neighboring family in the 1880s, an orphan grows up haunted by nightmares of a childhood trauma in which his own family was killed.
Director(s): Raoul Walsh
Production: Warner Bros.
Rotten Tomatoes:
101 min


Jeb, where are you?


- Are you all right?

- I'm all right.

I brought you some things

- some meal and beans and a good canteen.

Is that what kept you

- getting those things?

I came as soon as I could.

I brought you a map too. Look.

If you work up north through the

gloriettas, you can hit the skin road.

- If I work north? What about you?

- Yes, Jeb.

- Where will you be?

- I'm not going with you.

I knew it as soon as you came in...

By the look on your face

and the way you walked.

You've always been like that-

Able to think with my thoughts

and feel with my feelings.

But there's something

that keeps us apart.

Oh, Jeb, what happened to us?

Why did everything go wrong?

I don't know all of

it, but I know some.

I've been thinking and figuring.

This is where it started, this

is where it's going to end.

You see that rise? He'll

be coming over that.

He'll come killing.

Come out, or we'll come in after ya!

You hear it?

Jeb, honey, there's no one out there.

- You're imagining.

- I'm not imagining.


Putting together what happened

- what I guess must've happened.

Thor, it's all coming

back, strong and clear.

There's an answer in it.

There's something about me

that explains everything.

- Jeb, I don't understand.

- I'm gonna make you understand.

I've got to before they get here.

Do you know why I came to this place?

No, Jeb, but... It's

not a good hideout.

They're sure to trail you here.

I came for another reason.

I was here before, long ago.

I was a baby then.

I was scared the way

only a kid can get.

I was in a dark, cold place.

I had my eyes closed to get

away from some bad dream-

The same dream I'd

been having all my life.

I've never understood it. There

were boots running, flashes.

Daddy? Daddy?

But my father wasn't there.

Instead, a strange woman

was lying on the floor.

She crawled toward me.

That was the first

time I saw your mother.

Get up, son. No, Jeb,

you can't go to sleep now.

- Get your clothes on, son. We're going away from here.

- Who is that?

That's Jeb Rand. Now, pay

attention, Adam... And Thor.

This is Jeb. He's

going to live with us.

Come on, now. Help your sister.

They've gone, every danged one of 'em.

They've moved away somewhere.

Grant, if you ride with

that arm, you'll lose it.

I'll find 'em if it takes

me to the end of my life.

The idea that I was hiding or

running away never quite died out.

It should have, I guess, because

the next seven years I wasn't hiding.

Your ma was taking care of all of us.

I was growing up with you and Adam,

Going to school, helping to build a

house in the new place we moved to,

Having the whole

outdoors for a playground.

I'd about stopped having nightmares until

one day when I was about nine or ten-

Look, Jeb! A little black chick.

I found him under the house.

- What's the matter with you?

- You know what's the matter! You shot the colt!

Shot what colt? Are you crazy?


Jeb, stop!


Mom! Mom, they're fighting again! Mom!

Now, stop that fighting,

boys! Stop that fighting!

Now, stop it! Stop

that fighting, boys!

Thor, pump some water.

Now, stop it! Come on, boys!

Now, stop that fighting!

Come on! Stop it!

Adam! Jeb!

Now, what's it all about?

- He shot the colt.

- I didn't!

- You did so!

- You mean somebody shot our colt?

Said it was his. He

said I couldn't ride it.

But I rode it anyway.

He took a shot at it.

Or maybe me. I don't know.

But anyway, he killed the colt.

No. Somebody may have killed

him, but it wasn't Adam.

He's been here all morning

greasing the buckboard.

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Niven Busch

Niven Busch (April 26, 1903 – August 25, 1991) was an American novelist and screenwriter of movies such as the acclaimed The Postman Always Rings Twice. His novels included Duel in the Sun (1944) and California Street. He was married to actress Teresa Wright for ten years beginning in 1942. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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