Breakheart Pass (1975) Movie Script

Esther. Jane-Marie.
Up and dressed.
Come on out now, ladies.
- Train ain't due for a damn week.
- Where's Esther?
She's busy. She's got an all-nighter.
All right, fall in.
Dress up, Madigan. Dress up.
Murphy, dress 'em up. Come along.
- How long you gonna be?
- 20 minutes, half an hour.
Howdy do, ma'am?
You could have a lot of fun
out of me, darlin', if you tried.
One thing about me, darlin',
I won't go to hell for not tryin'.
Message from Fort Humboldt
for the governor.
I'll take it.
It's an army transport train.
No civilians on board.
Well, this is an odd place to settle.
OK, you heard him,
gentlemen. Line it up.
- Major Claremont.
- Sergeant, get me Captain Oakland.
Fall out the troops for exercise,
but keep them out of those tents.
Yes, sir.
Now you listen to me.
You will remain hard by this train.
You ever see an Indian washing?
They're dirty, and they're ignorant.
Major Claremont.
- How long will this take?
- As long as necessary, Governor.
This train runs on steam.
That requires water.
Let's get it done as
quickly as possible.
Of course.
All right, fall in.
There will be no skylarking...
Bellew said you want to see me.
Get your cipher book.
See what you can make of this.
- It's for the governor.
- It's from the fort.
Maybe it'll tell us what's going on.
Pissant politicians running an army train.
Yes, sir.
Havin' any problems?
No. We're just making sure we're
not gonna have any, Lieutenant.
- Newell, come with me a minute.
- For what, Captain?
Major gave me a message from
the fort to be deciphered.
Looks like you've got
room for one more.
No civilians, except by special
permission from Washington.
I'm a deputy US marshal.
Indian agent for the territory.
The governor can tell ya.
My orders are to accept no
unauthorised persons on this train.
Dr Molyneux and the Reverend
Peabody are posted to Fort Humboldt.
The young lady is a daughter
of the commandant at the fort.
Why do you want to go to Humboldt?
Levi Calhoun. He's in custody
up there. I wanna bring him back.
- If ever a man deserved to hang...
- And hang he will.
The sooner I can get up there,
the sooner he takes the drop.
We can have him sent to
you under armed escort.
You said that ain't army business.
That way or no way.
Good day, Marshal.
Major Claremont.
Locomotive's ready, sir.
- Very well, Sergeant. Carry on.
- Major.
I can't find Lieutenant
Newell or Captain Oakland.
Corporal said Humboldt's
only two days up the line.
Something funny's goin' on.
Get the hell off here, son.
Wonder why we ain't movin' yet.
You sign up yesterday? Hurry up
and wait. Hurry up and wait.
Right, I need eight
volunteers right now.
You, you, you two. You.
You, Murphy. You too, Rafferty.
Here's what I want you to do.
Go up and scour this town.
Captain Oakland and Lieutenant Newell
are missin'. See if you can find 'em.
Murphy and I will
take the small tent.
Have you found them?
- Not yet.
- Next time bring a nursemaid.
- The train cannot be held any longer.
- You expect me to leave my officers?
I'm very sorry. You know
the urgency of our mission.
Just a goddamn minute.
Just once too often, friend.
Put the gun away, friend.
What's your problem?
Slippery Fingers here
took $120 off of me.
- Maybe he's a good poker player.
- Too good to be true.
Looks like a pretty fair hand to me.
What's your name?
John Deakin.
Stand up.
I said stand up.
- No gun?
- I'm not a man of violence.
What's known as playing
it close to the chest.
That's not good
enough, Marshal. Outside.
I'm not a man of violence.
- That's enough.
- Not for me it's not.
Marshal, look at this.
"Wanted for theft, gambling
debts, arson and murder."
"John Murray, alias John
Deakin, alias Hayes."
"Former lecturer at the
University of Iowa."
A lecturer in what, Mr Deakin?
- Medicine.
- You don't expect us to believe that?
Here. Listen to this.
"Convicted of embezzlement."
"Trapped in Lake's Crossing, where he
escaped under cover of a fire that he set."
The whole town burned down.
Seven people killed.
Seven people. My God,
Richard, that's awful.
He blew up a wagonload
of explosives in Sharps.
It's still not army business.
Those explosives was on the way
to the presidio in San Francisco.
That makes it army business.
I'm pretty sure Mr Deakin here's
gonna be my ticket to Humboldt.
So the governor here got hold of
some of his friends in Washington,
had me appointed Indian
agent for the territory.
More ways to pacify Indians
than shooting holes in 'em.
But you did that, too.
In the line of duty, of course.
Even back in Ohio,
we knew about Nathan Pearce.
- Notorious, was I?
- No. Famous is more like it.
"Famous" is a better word, Marshal.
I must admire your spunk, young lady.
It's not an easy life out here.
How come you're making this trip if no
civilians are supposed to be aboard?
I have friends in high places.
Miss Scoville's joining her father,
at his urgent request.
Gentlemen, I have a
hard day tomorrow.
At my age, sleep is a necessity.
- "A hard day tomorrow"?
- I have to check the medical supplies.
We're cut off from the world now.
May I please just know
what in the hell is going on?
Governor, these are all
intelligent people.
I think they have a right to know.
Dr Molyneux here is a specialist.
Your troops are not merely relief. They're
replacements for soldiers who've died.
- Died?
- God save us. The Indians.
Not Indians. Fort Humboldt is in
the grip of a diphtheria epidemic.
Oh, Richard. My father.
We're in daily contact with the fort,
Marica, and your father's fine.
Why wasn't I told?
Because we might have lost the rest of
your command, not only two officers.
- They must have found out.
- Governor, how dare you expose a lady,
- all of us, to this dreadful pestilence?
- We have provisions for a month.
We'll remain aboard until Dr
Molyneux pronounces Humboldt clean.
He's got as good a chance as
any of catching the diphtheria.
I've already had
the disease. I'm immune.
- Where'd you catch it?
- In Mexico. Why?
Just curious.
How many troops are
available for duty?
- Gentlemen.
- Doctor.
25 out of a garrison of 76.
The others are too sick
for duty, or dead.
- White Hand must like that.
- White Hand?
Paiute chief. He needs watchin'.
25 men. That's not even
enough for patrols.
If you'll excuse me.
Marica. Are you all right?
Yes, of course.
It's been a long day.
Are you going to leave
him like this all night?
I reckon we could turn
him loose in the morning.
By then we'll be in snow country,
and he'll have no place to go.
You sure got a mighty poor
choice for your pity, ma'am.
Then you make a mighty poor
example of a lawman, Mr Pearce.
A man is innocent
until proved guilty.
But you've tried,
convicted and condemned.
Show me the law that says you can
treat a man like a wild animal.
You frightened me.
I'm sorry.
I didn't mean to.
Aren't you afraid of
someone seeing you?
I'm afraid we're not much
of a secret any more.
You should have told me about
the epidemic at the fort.
You'd only have worried.
Or are you afraid I might
have deserted, too?
No, I'd never think that.
Let's wait until we
get off the train.
Can I get you something?
There's some food left.
No, thanks.
A drink?
That I'll have.
Would you untie my legs?
Don't be silly.
- I won't go anywhere, I promise.
- I'm sure you won't.
I'm all cramped up and I
need the circulation.
I give you my word.
I'll only untie your legs.
And if you want to hop off the train,
it's a long hop to anywhere.
There. Better?
Give me a hand up?
Oh, my God.
You promised.
When a man is a killer, arsonist,
a cheat and a coward,
it's hardly surprising if he
turns out to be a liar as well.
- Is your mother still alive?
- Yes. But what's that to do with you?
- But she's not well.
- How do you know that?
If she were, the commander of the
fort would be visited by his wife,
and not his daughter.
It's strange, you coming out
here with diphtheria around,
and the Indians on the prod.
It must have been an urgent
invitation that brought you.
But not by letter. Your invitation
came by telegraph, right?
- You gonna marry the governor?
- Really. This is quite intolerable.
Before you leave, tie my hands again.
Not so tightly.
Why all this concern
and interest in me?
I should have thought you,
Mr Deakin, had enough worries.
I have.
Thank you.
Have Ferguson ready with his telegraph
equipment when we stop at 7.00.
- And get Mr O'Brien.
- Yes, sir.
- Why are we stopping?
- Morning, Governor.
My orders are to contact
the fort daily at this hour.
I hope you have no objection.
Make it short, please, Major.
Time's important.
Fall out, everybody. Everybody out.
Nice fresh air out here, men.
Everybody outside.
Come on, get it out
of there, Bennett.
Guard mounts for everybody. Murphy,
you post guards on the other side.
And you, you, you and you, up on
the top. Keep your eyes open.
White Hand's around here somewhere,
men, waiting to pounce on you little boys.
So stay awake, stay alert,
and keep your iron unbuckled.
I'll be right back.
I've gotten through to them, Major,
and they've acknowledged.
My regards to Colonel Scoville,
and congratulations on the
capture of Levi Calhoun.
That's the train, Calhoun.
What do I tell 'em?
How do I know you won't
pull no fancy tricks?
I swear I never would.
I don't believe you, soldier.
My God.
The fort's answering, sir.
As God is my witness, Calhoun,
I'll see you before a firing squad.
Don't you give me
no trouble, Colonel.
I got your bluebellies locked up.
By God, I'll skin 'em alive, one by each.
Major Claremont.
The epidemic's worsened.
- Is there news of my father?
- It has his signature, so he must be fine.
They're asking about
our time of arrival, sir.
With this weather, I guess we'll be
at Breakheart Pass in about 20 hours.
Transmit that. Add my
compliments to Colonel Scoville.
Then get Myrtle City. Request word on
Captain Oakland and Lieutenant Newell.
Yes, sir.
- I can't get Myrtle City, Major.
- Keep trying.
- Dead, sir.
- I don't understand how it could've gone.
Weather's been good.
It worked yesterday.
- Sergeant Bellew, board the troops.
- Yes, sir.
Troopers, fall in. Board the train.
Murphy, get 'em aboard.
You be sure you take a roll call.
I don't wanna leave anybody behind.
- Seen Dr Molyneux this morning?
- No, not yet.
- Shall I send for him, Governor?
- No, it isn't necessary.
Dr Molyneux had better adjust to army
schedules. We don't run a restaurant.
Dr Molyneux.
The governor asked for you, sir.
It looks like some sort of seizure.
Apoplexy, I'd say.
You mind if I have a look?
- What the devil for?
- I do know something about medicine.
Why not, Major?
All right.
- The skin's broken above the left ear.
- Of course. He fell.
- Died before a bruise could form.
- Apoplexy kills instantly.
No, a seizure like that would turn
the lips and the fingers blue.
It's lucky we have the law aboard.
Now, what does that mean?
There's a puncture. Right there.
Just below the ribs.
Looks like somebody knocked him out,
stuck a surgical probe up under his ribs.
God save us.
- It's hard to believe.
- The fact is, we have a killer aboard.
Yes, we have.
Move it along, men. Murphy,
keep an eye on that detail.
I'll check the drivers.
Sergeant, as soon as the engineer is
finished, put the men back on the train.
- We've got to move along.
- Yes, sir.
Madigan, you and Bennett over
here, keep a sharp lookout.
Keep them logs moving, men.
Think how lucky you are. You're warm.
On the double. We don't have
all day. Get that wood up there.
It's colder than hell out here.
- Where's Deakin?
- Inside. Don't worry yourself.
At least he's got good sense.
Men on top, all aboard.
Back to your cars.
Dr Molyneux is dead. Two of the
major's best officers are missing.
And we can't get through
to Myrtle. Do you mind?
Go ahead.
Nobody heard anything.
Nobody saw anything.
And nobody knows anything.
It can only get better.
Well, you know, maybe they
were accidents after all.
We might have seen the end of it.
Have you gone crazy?
He fell. My fireman fell.
He's dead.
You can't be sure.
Somebody better check on him.
Somebody that knows
somethin' about doctoring.
He might try to run off on us.
Looks like every bone
in his body is busted.
Move out, men.
Can we make up the lost time?
Men are dying in that fort.
- Sergeant Bellew, board the troops.
- Yes, sir. Troopers, fall in.
Do you mind if I have a look
up there in that locomotive?
If it's all right with the marshal,
it's all right with me.
Go ahead.
Whiskey. He was reeking with it.
God is my witness, I never saw
Jackson touch that stuff.
Trooper Rafferty reporting, sir.
I'm your new fireman.
Hop up, young fella.
Morning, sir.
Good morning. You must
be Carlos the chef.
I am. And you must be
Mr Deakin, the murderer.
How about some coffee? It's hot.
Thank you.
Marshal Pearce.
You're all mighty relaxed in the face
of what's transpired aboard this train.
- What?
- If Deakin's right, Molyneux was killed.
The telegraph line to
Myrtle no longer works.
It could be ice
or animals, even wind.
I think this bears investigation,
more than you're giving it.
Some little time ago I
had a choice, Colonel.
Keep your nose clean
and you'll get there.
What about it?
Never had no call to be a detective.
We're gonna all be on
this train for a while.
We just might find out what
happened before we have to get off.
Could be you did it all.
Could be.
Or you.
Oh, hell, we're stopping again.
Oh, no.
Oh, my God.
- We're going backwards.
- Oh, my God.
- He's right. We're not stopping.
- I know.
What's going on?
Quickly. Get in your bunks.
Down there.
- Move. Get in those bunks and stay there.
- Sarge, I'm scared. What's going on?
Lay down, and stay there.
Get back in your bunks.
All of you, get back in your bunks.
It'll be all right. Stay in your bunks.
Troopers, calm down. Don't panic.
- God. It's locked from the outside.
- What the hell is going on here?
Where's that brakeman?
Where's that brakeman? Open it.
It's broken. The metal
must have crystallised.
- I don't know why the brakes didn't hold.
- Sounded like a gunshot to me.
Thank God we didn't lose
the medical supplies.
- Not much good without a doctor.
- You're a doctor. Least, so you said.
- Not any more I'm not.
- Simple charity to your fellow man.
My fellow man is about to hang me.
Major, we must try for
more replacements.
Major, you have to contact the fort.
The telegraph set's in the
front of the supply wagon.
Henry, telegraph set
in the supply wagon.
Sooner or later, me and sonny
boy are gonna need some sleep.
There's nothing you can do
about that. They're dead.
So am I. Or as good as.
It wasn't your fault. You were back there
with us. Nothing you could have done.
It ain't there, sir.
- What?
- The spare telegraph set. It's gone.
Mighty glad to see you, White Hand.
You made good time.
The train?
It's comin'.
- Soldiers?
- No word yet.
Me, too, sonny boy.
Me, too.
All right. Six hours, no more.
Take a compartment in the next car.
Who's gonna watch the steam?
I think we have someone
who can take care of that.
Feed in the fuel to keep the
needle between 100 and 130.
You got any questions?
Use the wood pile on the left.
The other's no good. It's wet.
- He says they didn't wreck the troop cars.
- Son of a bitch.
He ain't done yet, Jebbo.
Hawkins, ask him what time
he gets to Breakheart Pass.
Then tell him to stop the
train when he gets there.
We'll have to get rid
of those soldiers.
White Hand's gonna have to work
a mite harder than he figured.
It's about time. It's almost morning.
I'm hungry.
Pressure's right up there.
Go back and go to bed. You can
sleep the rest of the way.
Mind if I help myself?
Of course not, Major.
What is it, Henry?
I can't find the reverend.
He can't be far. Only ten minutes
ago he was trying to save my soul.
Could he have fallen off?
- We could back up and look for him.
- Where's O'Brien? We'll back up.
- No.
- My God, Richard.
- Why not?
- Someone is trying to stop this train.
- I will not allow that to happen.
- I can't believe you won't stop to look.
Marica, darling, there are men dying at
that fort who desperately need our help.
It's my responsibility
to get us there.
If the reverend was stupid or unlucky
enough to have fallen off, I'm sorry.
- We're going through.
- Governor.
You are one superior son of a bitch.
We'll search what's
left of this train.
Who are you?
John Deakin.
What are you?
He must have fallen off. If we
back up maybe five miles...
He certainly wouldn't
have jumped off.
Reverend Peabody was small. A big,
strong man could have thrown him off.
Me, I have an alibi. Miss Scoville
obviously is not a strong man.
But the rest of you
are big, strong men.
What the hell are you talking about?
You're pretty free
with your theories.
And my whiskey.
A damn sight better than
that whiskey back in Myrtle.
Marshal. There's no need for that.
Mr Deakin is not a man of violence.
He told us what he's not,
but not what he is.
Are you in there?
They're all gone.
Carlos is gone, Deakin's gone.
The place is a goddamn mess.
What are you talking about?
Talk sense, man.
The ammunition boxes are open.
The coffins are open. They're gone.
You're drunk.
Drunk? I wish to hell I was drunk.
Don't. You'll die if you do.
No, not me. Your friends out there.
I'm gonna take my hand away.
Don't scream. You promise?
You damn fool. You'll get us both killed.
There's no help for you out there.
Especially not from your
friend the governor.
Don't scream.
I want you to hide me.
Why should I?
To save both our lives.
I asked you this once before,
and you didn't tell me.
You'd better tell me now.
Who are you?
My name is John Deakin.
That's my real name.
- I work for the US Secret Service.
- I don't believe you.
Do you believe I'm a killer?
You've got about a minute
to make up your mind.
- Who is it?
- O'Brien, ma'am.
Come in. The door's not locked.
- What is it?
- The prisoner, Deakin. He's escaped.
Where could a man escape
to in this wilderness?
That's the point, there is no place.
That's why we think he's still on the train.
- And you think perhaps I had...?
- No.
Just that he could have sneaked
in when you were asleep.
I can assure you he isn't
hiding under my bed.
Please excuse me.
Tight squeeze.
I'm a damn fool. Now please get out.
I want you to do one more thing for me.
Go along and bring back the major.
Nobody else. Just the major.
Don't even talk to anybody.
- But Governor Fairchild...
- Especially not Governor Fairchild.
Get on, now.
- What in God's name?
- Put it away.
- You'll use it later.
- I don't believe a word of it.
What if I showed you 400 Winchester
rifles that were stolen from the factory?
We've been tracking them
halfway across the country.
They're on the train now,
in the supply car.
All those men killed.
The train half wrecked.
- All that over stolen rifles?
- There's more to it than that.
And the governor? Surely he'd
have nothing to do with it.
I intend to see that Governor
Fairchild stands trial for murder.
Major Claremont.
Deakin must have got to him.
Where in God's name can they be?
In the supply wagon.
We've looked everywhere else.
Find 'em and kill 'em. Both.
I'm sorry.
- I want to see those rifles.
- You will.
Miss Scoville, stay in the compartment,
and keep your door looked after we leave.
All right, stolen rifles.
Not worth all that killing.
Dr Molyneux... there was no reason.
If you remember, Molyneux said he was
going to inspect the medical supplies.
Rifles, dynamite, ammunition...
not much a doctor
would be interested in.
My God. The diphtheria,
those men at the fort.
There is no diphtheria.
Reverend Peabody didn't
go into the supplies.
I don't think he went
to church, either.
Mr Peabody was a secret service
operative for 15 years,
the last five of them with me.
Don't touch that gun.
Hey, point that thing the other way.
I'm just a working stiff.
The major's just in back.
Bring him over here.
Get down.
- Where's your gun?
- I don't have a gun. I'm just the engineer.
- No.
- Jump.
- Where's the gun?
- It's in the box.
Underneath the seat.
I don't know who you are,
but the law says...
The law's who I am.
Have a look behind that wood.
They got onto something back
there in Myrtle, and died for it.
Then when Jackson the
fireman spotted the bodies,
Banlon threw him off the train.
Are you gonna listen
to this murderer?
I looked at Jackson at the bottom of the
trestle... a head wound with a lot of blood.
A dead man doesn't bleed.
You probably hit him with a
wrench before you threw him off.
Before God, Major, I don't
know what he's talking about.
Major, sir, what do I do?
Keep your gun on Banlon.
If he moves, kill him.
We'll have to crawl forward on
the roof and shoot him out.
What for? He's driving us
right where we wanna go.
Let's agree that Deakin is no idiot.
Why is he taking us there?
Let's get 'er done.
My job was to arrange
a train. I'm no gunman.
That's true, O'Brien.
But a noose would fit your neck
just as neatly as it would fit ours.
Hey, sonny boy.
Give me the wrench there.
The nut on the brake handle's loose.
Give me the wrench.
You know how to run this thing?
I think so.
You suspected everybody else.
Why not me?
Marshal Pearce was our
number one suspect.
You didn't want him on the train.
That put you in the clear.
What's ahead of us at the fort?
What's wrong there?
Calhoun's not in custody.
He's probably with White Hand,
and they're in control of the fort.
My God, what for?
Humboldt's a shipping point for all gold
and silver from California and Nevada.
That's why everybody's
involved, except the girl.
The Indians want the rifles
and ammunition back there.
I figure they were gonna put the gold
and silver in the coffins and ship it back.
There's a gun lined up on
you gents. Now stop the train.
- You hurt?
- Only my dignity.
Breakheart Pass coming up.
Where are the soldiers?
Where are they, Deakin?
- Here they come.
- Look.
Hang on.
That son of a bitch.
Why'd he stop now?
This is where we get off.
- You know anything about dynamite?
- Of course.
Set this to blow the rails, but don't
light the fuse until I get back.
Why the hell are they shooting?
Tell an Indian things'll be one way and
they're not, he'll think you crossed him.
- They know you, Marshal. Show yourself.
- Like hell.
- You son of a bitch. What's going on?
- A man's aboard. He's got the engine.
You dumb pilgrims.
Ain't nobody in that engine.
Get the troopers at the fort,
but watch out for Calhoun.
- When these blow, he'll ride out here.
- Right.
If we get the pressure back up, I can
take her on in. Let's stoke her up.
That's the train. Let's ride.
Tell the Indians to form a work party and
replace that track with one from behind.
Take the claw, put it in
like this, and pull down.
Over here. Put it here,
like that, and pull it down.
All right, take it away.
Where's Fairchild?
The Palace car.
Maybe you know what's
going on around here.
Keep 'em working, O'Brien.
Let me go.
Let her go.
The hell I will.
I reckon we've come
down to it, Deakin.
You have a choice.
You could throw that gun down.
I don't think I can do that.
Are you all right?
Your father's waiting
for you out there.