Rocky Mountain

Synopsis: A Confederate troop, led by Captain Lafe Barstow, is prowling the far ranges of California and Nevada in a last desperate attempt to build up an army in the West for the faltering Confederacy. Because the patrol saves a stagecoach, with Johanna Carter as one of the passengers, from an Indian attack, and is marooned on a rocky mountain, it fails in its mission but the honor of the Old South is upheld.
Director(s): William Keighley
Production: Warner Bros.
83 min

To us, as we first saw it...

...this place was known only as The Rock.

Two thousand miles behind us...

...Lee was fighting for the life

of the Southern Confederacy.

We were some of Lee's men.

He had sent us here, eight of us... a last desperate effort

to save the war.

Our mission was all but impossible,

but we had to succeed...

...for we knew now, that we were living

the last days of our cause...

...unless we ourselves could turn the tide.

There, high above us...

...was the man

we'd ridden 2000 miles to meet...

...Cole Smith.

You Captain Barstow?

I'm California Beal. Cole Smith sent me.

Where is he?

He'll be along.

That all the men you got with you?

I'm not here to supply men.

How many have you got with you?


Cole Smith sent me to give you the word,

that's all.

Plank, Kip, Jonas.

Up top and have a look around.

They won't find nothing up there now.

Cole Smith camped there a month ago

with maybe 60 men.

Sixty? What about the 500

he's supposed to have?

You'll see them, when it's your time to.

You a fair sample of Cole Smith's troops?

I don't know as we call ourselves

anybody's troops, old folks...

...but we're plenty able to keep

half of California in a cold sweat.

You'll get the chance.

We didn't like that very well.

Cole Smith wasn't here.

And we didn't like

the envoy he'd sent either...

...California Beal.

That crooked line there

is the Humboldt River.

The Overland Stage Route runs along it.

Cole Smith picked this meeting place

pretty close to the trail.

You won't be kept awake

by no stagecoaches on it.

Not the way the Indians is right now.

There's a coach on it today.

You can see the dust from his wheels...

...where the trail comes out

of the Battle Mountains.

Well, anyway,

he sure don't belong there.

There's some kind of passel of Indians

a whole lot closer than that.

Look at them sand hills

by the Humboldt, Plank.

I see it. That ain't wind doing that, Lafe.

There's been plenty Shoshones

gouging around here this past week.

I'm a lot more interested

in where you left Cole Smith.

I'd never ask Cole Smith

where he's going.

Lafe, look at that dust there now.

There's a war party underneath that,

just as sure as you're born.

What's wrong

with that stagecoach driver?

He must see that. He can't help seeing it.

You figure they're there

to jump the stage?

Listen, Beal, we've come a long way.

I don't want to be told

that Cole Smith can't be found.

- You just relax, soldier boy.

- And I don't wanna hear...

...that all he's got with him

is a bunch of 60 or 70 penny-ante misfits.

- Like me?

- That's the general idea.

I'll tell you, maybe we don't drill good...

...but when we get started,

we cover a lot of ground.

By the time we get to Sacramento...

...counting rebel sympathizers we'll pick up

on the way, we'll be close to a thousand.

We'll make your General Lee

a president of the town inside of 30 days.

Hey, you know something?

That coach has been in a fight already.

Give me the glass.

No shotgun guard either. Must be dead.

They're closing in on all sides.

I'll give him about five more minutes.

They'll kill his horses

when he gets to that point of rocks there.

That man can sure drive, whoever he is.

Sure you can drive.

You'd be surprised how you can drive

with a war party closing in on you.

There they are, Lafe.

The war ponies are busting out of the draw.

This thing ain't going on

much longer, Lafe.

In case you're getting any wild ideas...

...Cole Smith wouldn't like

you getting mixed up in this.

He'd sort of feel it might spoil

what General Lee sent you out here for.

Let's get down there.



Hyah! Hyah! Hyah!

Forward, ho!





Often afterwards in our days

on The Rock, it was easy to forget...

...why I'd ever chosen six rattle-headed

kids and an old man for the job we had.

Kip Waterson,

the baby-faced heir to a plantation.

Come back, you ninny.

Pierre Duchesne, from French Louisiana.

Pap Dennison, an old man really...

...but a hard, reckless fighter

who never gave ground while he lived.

Kay Rawlins,

from the Mississippi steamboats...

...a rough, unfriendly man,

as the Indians now found out.

Jimmy Wheat,

the little rednecked cropper...

...who could fight

like a wildcat with hydrophobia...

...but carried a useless little dog

2000 miles.

Jonas Weatherby, the Texan,

a seasoned plainsman at 18.

Plank, our other real plainsman,

hard and bitter...

...with chain-gang scars

on his legs at 22.

One moment they were all around us,

and we were drowning in Indians.

Then suddenly it was over with

and we had the desert to ourselves.

But I knew we had to get back to The Rock,

and quickly.


Nicked you, huh?

What kept you fellers?

Pierre, pick up those loose horses.

Rawlins, see to the driver.


Where you hit, mister?

Get the woman out.


Hey, he's right.

Packed with dang female women.

You might have known it.

I don't know what's wrong with her.

This ain't her blood.

Is anything busted anyplace, ma'am?

They're dead.

They're dead in there.

We never realized as we stared so

curiously at our unexpected guest... much history

might have been differently lived...

...if she'd not been there.

Are you all right, ma'am?

Yes, thank you.

I'm sorry I went to pieces so.

Oh, it was only natural, ma'am.

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Winston Miller

Winston Miller (June 22, 1910 – June 21, 1994) was an American screenwriter, film producer, and actor. He wrote for 62 films and television shows between 1936 and 1976. He began as an actor in silent films, appearing in eleven films between 1922 and 1929. He was the screenwriter for many TV series including Wagon Train Episode 13, Season 1 in 1957: "The Clara Beauchamp Story" with Nina Foch and Shepperd Strudwick. Earl Bellamy was the director. He was born in St. Louis, Missouri, the younger brother of silent film star Patsy Ruth Miller. He died in Los Angeles from a heart attack. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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