Belle Starr (1941) Movie Script

Get up there.
Grandpa, grandpa,
look what I done found me.
Whoa, Nelly.
Well now, ain't that
the beatenest?
I'll bet that belonged
to miss Belle Starr herself.
It looks just like her too.
Who's this miss Belle?
Miss Belle was
a mighty fine white lady
that lived in this big house
a long time ago
when I was no bigger
than what you is, scarcely.
Where her at now?
- She's gone.
- Dead?
That's what most folks say
don't know no better.
But miss Belle, she ain't
never going to die
'cause around here
in old Missouri
miss Belle is what the white
folks call a "leggend."
A leggend?
What's that, grandpa?
That's just the prettiest
part of the truth, honey,
the real bestest part.
Get up, Nelly.
What do y'all want?
I want to see miss Belle.
She asked me to come
and see her.
Tell her I said I'm here.
Miss Belle can't see nobody.
She's laying down.
Don't give me any
of your black lip.
Go on, do what I said.
I ain't gonna wake up
that girl for nobody.
She's all wore out as it is
trying to run
this whole place by herself
with no menfolks to help...
It's all right, mammy Lou. I asked Mr.
Tench to come over.
Don't pay no attention
to that trash.
Just go on just like
you ain't never seen him.
Here he is, miss Belle,
sound as a dollar.
Bet you can't find a scratch
or a pimple on him.
How much?
Well now, I figure,
seeing how scarce good horses
is around here,
about $500.
For a horse that's stringhalty,
got bowed tendons?
No, ma'am.
He's sound as a dollar.
Besides, I happen to know
you stole this horse.
Who, me?
He used to belong
to my brother Ed.
But we sold him to Amos Sistrom.
No, ma'am, you're thinking
of the wrong animal.
Then Sistrom sold him
to John Miller.
And you stole him from Miller.
I'll take my oath on a stack
of bibles this high...
But I'm not gonna turn you
over to the sheriff this time
because Miller's nothing
but a Yankee anyhow.
Give me a hand.
Miss Belle, I never stole
a horse in my life.
Honest, I ain't.
I've done a heap of things,
but this ain't one of them.
I raised this horse ever since
he's been a little bitty Colt.
All right.
Give him his $500, mammy Lou,
in confederate money.
Wait a minute, miss Belle. I
don't want no confederate money.
Miss Belle.
Wait a minute, miss Belle.
I don't want
no confederate money.
I got a whole truckload
of that stuff.
You know it ain't worth
two cents on the dollar.
Ed, Ed.
Oh, Belle, it's so good
to be with you again.
You're home at last.
Ed, you shouldn't be
here like this.
Somebody might see you.
That's all right.
Let them see me.
But the country's
full of Yankees.
If they catch you
in this uniform...
We don't have to worry
about Yankees now.
The war's over.
- We're licked.
- No.
- Lee surrendered.
- But he couldn't.
Joe Johnstons surrendered
too, even old Bedford Forrest.
All right.
Supposing they have.
They're not the whole South.
Missouri hasn't surrendered.
- Not yet, but it will.
- It won't.
It'll have to, or be destroyed.
It won't, I tell you. There
are still men in this state.
- Guerrillas?
- I don't care what you call them.
Didn't they hang those Yankee
murderers that killed father?
The men that killed father
weren't Yankees.
They were renegades
hiding behind their uniforms.
They were for the North,
weren't they?
Oh, sis,
I know what a shock
it is to you.
After all you've been through
staying here by yourself,
keeping the place going,
counting on us to win.
I feel just as badly as you do
that it had to end like this
on a country road.
But what can we do?
What can any of us do?
It hasn't ended for me.
And Missouri needs
just like any other rebel state.
And we are gonna
give it to them.
We're gonna run every one of
these confederate traitors
clear out of this country.
And we're gonna take
their lands away from them
and give every one of you
a nice, big farm
and a mule.
And we're gonna let you
walk on the sidewalk.
And on the front porch
you're gonna sit.
And anyone...
any white man
says anything to you,
Ed Shirley.
Well, don't you shake hands
with a Johnny reb?
If you don't mind
a yank's glove.
Belle, you remember that
funny-looking classmate of mine
who used to eat 18 of mammy
Lou's hotcakes for breakfast?
- Belle.
- How do you do, major?
This is wonderful
seeing you again, Belle.
- It's been...
- Five years.
Yes, five years this August.
Well, it was quite a surprise
when I found out you were here.
The last I heard your outfit was
dodging bullets with that fellow
down in Atlanta, you know,
the one who stole all those spoons.
General Sherman sent me
here on special duty.
Seems some of your people
don't admit the war's over.
And never will.
I must warn you, Tom.
Belle is one of those southerners
who's neither resigned
nor repented.
Well, why should she be?
After all, we both fought for
what we thought was right.
Nothing about that
to be ashamed of.
My only quarrel today
is with fellows like this
who are in it for only what
they can get out of it.
Only last night he raided
one of our supply trains,
seized our horses and colors
and sent me word
that he intended to keep up
the war until doomsday.
I'm afraid you're making
him sound
like a very courageous man.
Perhaps he is,
but Missouri is no place for
such so-called courage today,
as he will soon find out
if I ever lay hands on him.
And what will you do
when this great day comes?
I'll hang him
from the highest tree
and his friends with him.
Wouldn't that require
a great deal of rope?
Fortunately, we have
an ample supply.
Now if you'll excuse me,
I'd better be on my way.
How about coming to dinner with us, Tom?
Mammy Lou's still on hand.
I'd be delighted, Ed, anytime.
- Saturday night?
- Can't think of a better time.
- Good.
- Well, goodbye.
It's been a great pleasure
seeing you again, Belle.
- Goodbye, Ed.
- Goodbye, Tom.
Let's see...
It's the next one, isn't it?
Strange... I have a vague feeling
we've been here before.
They were playing
"good night, ladies."
It was the last dance.
And you were leaving
the next morning.
That was so long ago.
I had no idea
you even remembered.
Yet nothing seems
to have changed, does it?
Nothing that really
matters, I mean.
I know how you felt about
the Confederacy, Belle,
what the South meant to you.
They meant a lot to me too,
for that very reason,
even though I had on
this uniform.
But look, Belle,
in the moonlight
it's almost Grey.
So it is.
What's wrong, dear?
I just remembered something else
I can't help but associate
with this tree.
Father was tied to it
you'll have to excuse me, major.
I'm sorry.
Jake, see who it is.
I'll go, miss Belle.
Major, I believe I heard
you admiring this room.
I'm in love with the whole
house, colonel.
No one who hasn't actually
seen some of these old places
can have any idea how priceless
and beautiful they really are.
That's why it seems such a pity
so many of them
had to be burned.
Or don't you agree
with me, major?
Why, I agree that it's a pity anything
beautiful has to be destroyed.
Sometimes one has no choice.
Well, at least
it's fortunate for us
that you admire old houses.
In some of our states I understand
it's practically impossible
to find any left to admire.
I hope it will never
be necessary
to say the same thing
about Missouri.
By the way, did I ever tell you the
story about the old darky who...?
- Who is it?
- I don't know, ma'am.
It's somebody says
they's got to see you.
- Did you tell them we were at dinner?
- Yes, sir, but...
It's all right. Will you excuse me,
You wish to see me?
Well, I'll be doggone.
He wasn't lying.
You are pretty as a picture.
I beg your pardon?
The hair, the figure, the face,
I'm very sorry,
but I have guests.
Yes, I know. I saw major
Crail's orderly outside.
So if you'll kindly
tell me what you want...
I want to know why you're
entertaining major Crail,
a fire-eating southerner
like you...
I'm not entertaining him.
My brother asked him here.
Especially after your
defense of me
right to his face the other day.
I defended you?
With considerable
vehemence, I'm told.
But how could I?
I don't even know who you are.
Well, permit me. My name's Starr,
Sam Starr.
Sam Starr?
You'd better get out of
here, white man, and quick.
Please go.
Somebody might see you.
But I've just ridden
40 miles to see you.
Surely you ain't going
to send me away
the moment I get here. And
besides, I wouldn't think of going
without paying my respects
to major Crail.
You wouldn't dare.
I hear he's very
anxious to meet me.
You'd better get out of here and
quit aggravating miss Belle.
But I don't understand.
Why should you do
such a fool thing as this?
I like doing fool things,
don't you?
Don't pay him no
attention, miss Belle.
He's crazy as a bedbug.
Mammy Lou, set another place
for captain Starr.
Miss Belle.
Mm mm mm!
Thank you.
I knew any woman who thought it would
take a lot of rope to hang my friends
wouldn't deny an old soldier
a bite to eat.
I wish to present an unexpected
but nonetheless welcome guest.
- Mrs. Dunwoody.
- Mrs. Dunwoody.
- Mr. Dunwoody.
- Mr. Dunwoody.
- Mrs. Dubois.
- Mrs. Dubois.
Mr. Dubois.
- Colonel Thornton.
- Colonel.
My brother captain Shirley.
Major Crail of
the United States army.
Captain Sam Starr.
Won't you sit here, captain,
beside me?
I hope I shall always be
beside you, ma'am.
Why, captain,
what a pretty speech.
Major, perhaps captain Starr
can tell us
something about those awful men
you mentioned the other day...
guerrillas I believe
you called them.
I shall be glad to have any
information that he possesses.
You were referring to...
Certain unscrupulous men
who, while pretending
to keep up the war,
are bringing destruction
not only upon themselves
but upon the whole state.
I'm afraid I don't know
any such men, major.
But I'm sure that if they
do exist,
you'll see to it they meet
the end they deserve.
I think I can promise you that.
I do hope
you're hungry, captain.
No one else seems
to be eating a thing.
Hungry, ma'am?
I'm starved.
Well, as I was saying,
this old darky that I was
telling you about
lived on a plantation.
And one morning...
I'm sure we can persuade
Mrs. Thornton to play for us.
Then we can dance.
It'll be like old times.
I'm afraid you'll have to
excuse me, miss Shirley.
You don't mean you're
going to have to leave
so early?
Unfortunately I must.
My hat, please,
and also captain Starrs hat.
Captain Starrs going with me.
But I wouldn't think
of letting you both go.
Besides, captain Starrs
promised to tell us
about the battle of Jonestown.
Haven't you, captain?
I should like to
very much, ma'am,
but it appears I have
no choice in the matter.
You don't mean you're
really going with him?
What else can I do?
So that's why you came
here in the first place...
to give yourself up.
Well, that's fine.
I'm delighted.
Good night, Tom.
I'm so glad we could be
of service to you.
And I hope you'll come
again soon.
Captain Shirley,
colonel, ladies.
After you, captain.
Good night.
Your gun, please, captain.
Oh, of course.
Do you have a horse?
Your orderly was kind enough
to take care of him.
Orderly, the horses.
I thought you told me that
uniform would fit you to a "t".
Well, them Yankees are fatter
underneath than they look.
See that major Crail
is comfortable
till I get back.
Major, what might
your religion be?
A northern Methodist
or a Southern?
- Northern.
- I was afraid of that.
I'm a "sons and daughters
of the heavenly hope" myself.
Just keep your eyes
to the front, brother.
I would like for you to come to
one of our meetings sometime.
We got a preacher can sure
make you smell brimstone.
Captain Starr.
Major Crail sends
his compliments, ma'am,
and says he's sorry
he can't rejoin us.
What happened?
Where is he?
He had to attend to some
urgent business, I believe.
Am I forgiven?
By the sound of that music
doesn't look like
Sam is gonna be
too much in a hurry
to come back.
No, thanks.
By gum, look yonder.
They got that Yankee major
as sure as you're shooting.
Son, you stay here.
Don't let them out of your
sight till I get back.
What about our horse you was
fixing on stealing back, pa?
Never mind about that.
Do as I tell you.
Besides, ain't I told you stealing
what's yours ain't stealing?
Good night, captain Starr.
It's been a wonderful evening.
I don't know why
it ever had to end.
I hate to go, ma'am,
but in my business,
the morning air sometimes
is not very healthy.
You mean you're afraid Tom
Crail might come back again.
You never can tell
after the way he looked
at you all through supper.
I didn't notice
anyone looking at me
one way or another.
I was looking at you.
So was your brother.
In fact,
quite a few people
were looking at you
one way or another.
40 miles is an awful
long ride, captain.
And I wouldn't want you to be out
in the morning air on my account.
So good night.
Good night.
Was it worth
a 40-mile ride?
It was worth
a 400-mile ride.
Will you come again?
If you think I'll be welcome.
There's always a place
at our table for one more.
Thank you, miss Shirley,
and good night.
Good night, captain.
If you should happen
to run into major Crail,
tell him I think he's awful mean
running away like that
on business.
Well, major, the way
Sam's laughing,
looks like some of your folks
are going to get raided
Before breakfast.
Sorry to have kept
you waiting, major.
A nice-looking horse
you got here, major.
Look out, Sam.
Here they come.
Ain't no sense in you wearing
yourself into a frazzle, miss Belle.
You know them Yankees
ain't caught captain Starr.
But surely Ed's heard
something by now.
He's been gone
at least two hours.
Come here.
Come and sit on mammy's lap
like you used to.
Oh, my baby.
Mammy Lou,
why do things like this
always happen to me?
'Cause you're so
full of the devil,
miss Belle, that's why.
You down there, what do you mean
chunking rocks at a lady's
window when they's asleep?
Well, I'm one of
captain Starrs men.
He's been shot.
Where is he?
You'd better stay
out of here, baby.
I'll do whatever's
got to be done.
Oh, fiddlesticks.
I know he's got hips.
You ain't supposed to.
Give me that water.
I won't. It's every woman's duty
to take care of the wounded.
Duty ain't got
nothing to do with it
when folks are shot
where captain Starr is.
What the devil do you
think you're going to do?
See how badly you're hurt.
Let me out of here.
There's nothing wrong.
But you can't go around
bleeding to death.
Then get Blue Duck a wad of
cotton and let us alone.
Grab his hands.
You knew better than
bringing me here, you fool.
Don't pay attention to him.
Mammy, you hold his leg.
Get away from me.
Ain't no use, ma'am.
He's plumb set against it.
Acts just like a preacher
we had one time.
He got filled full of
buckshot the same way.
Took four of us deacons
to hold him.
He come out of it all right,
next Sunday preached us
one of the finest sermons
you'd ever want to listen
to... on the end of man.
Come in.
Captain Starrs been shot.
And he won't let us
do a thing for him.
But, Belle, he can't
stay here in your room.
That's what I've been
trying to tell her.
But he's hurt. And they'd never
even think of looking for him here.
Get that Ethiopian
elephant off me.
Let me up.
Everybody be quiet. I'll see
if I can get rid of them.
Tom, what are these men
doing here?
Mammy Lou, have you been
killing chickens today?
No, sir, I ain't killed no
chickens in about two months now.
No pigs? Nothing?
November is hog-killing
time, not may.
Then how do you account for these
blood stains on your lawn?
- Blood stains?
- On our lawn?
Are you hiding someone
in this house?
Of course not.
Well, in that case,
there can be no objection
if we see for ourselves.
Sergeant, search the house.
Now wait a minute, Tom. There's
no necessity for that.
We've already told you
there was no one here.
I hope for everybody's sake
you're right, Ed.
Get out of this house,
all of you!
Don't think that I can't
use this, or that I won't.
It's all right, Belle.
Let him look.
Better put up that gun, Belle.
You're only getting yourself
into deeper trouble.
Miss Belle, baby...
I warn you not to come
another step.
You don't know this girl, major.
She really meant it
when she said she'd shoot.
It was awfully foolish of you
to go to all this trouble.
And major Crail might think
you had something to do
with my being here.
You fool, do you
want to be hanged?
Well, a lot of folks
think I was born to be.
Major, this is getting
to be quite a habit.
Take him out.
I hope he's got an extra
saddle blanket, sergeant.
You yanks don't care
where you shoot a man.
I'm sorry, Ed, but I'll have
to place you under arrest too.
No, wait a minute.
Ed didn't have anything
to do with this.
It's all right, Belle.
He wasn't even here when
captain Starr came back.
He didn't want to let him stay.
I made him.
Sorry, Belle, I have no choice.
Ed is the head of this household
and he's responsible
for what goes on in it.
But captain Starr was wounded.
You wouldn't refuse to help even
a dog under those circumstances.
Dressing a wound
and hiding a fugitive
are two different things.
As a soldier, Ed knew that.
That's right, honey.
Take him out.
You, his friend,
pretending to be so glad
to see us again.
I knew it was a lie.
I knew we should never have
let you set foot in here.
My personal feelings have
nothing to do with this, Belle.
I have orders from
the war department
to arrest every person
giving aid to...
then why don't you arrest me?
And to burn every house
in which he's known
to have been hiding.
Tom, you don't mean that.
My men will help you
remove anything
you wish to save, Belle.
I'd give anything in the world
to be out of this,
but it's my job.
If I don't do it,
somebody else will.
I'll give you
all the time you want.
All right.
Go ahead.
Burn it!
Burn everything in it.
But you'll burn me with it!
You have your orders.
Miss Belle, miss Belle, baby.
Oh, miss Belle, come on,
you've got to get out.
No. No.
Stop it.
Stop it.
Belle, Belle, please
go out of the house.
- Belle baby.
- Let me go.
I'd rather burn,
I won't.
I won't.
Honey, honey, won't you
do it for mammy Lou?
I don't care!
Please, darling.
I want to burn!
Let me go!
I want to burn!
Where are captain Starrs men?
Up in the hills.
Do you know how to get
in touch with them?
Yes'm, I reckon so.
- Let's go.
- Miss Belle.
You and Jake go over
to colonel Thornton's.
Tell him I said you were to stay
there until you hear from me.
Who was that?
You don't have to worry, ma'am.
That's just one of the boys'
way of saying howdy.
You sure they'll recognize
you in that uniform?
Great garden in the
sunrise... I clean forgot.
If that's you, Blue Duck,
show yourself.
If it ain't,
start a-running.
That's my wife,
a great woman.
It's me, Sarah.
It's Blue Duck.
Come on, young'un.
It's me, Sarah.
They got Sam.
- Shot him?
- Somewhat.
They arrested him
and my brother too.
They oughtn't to have done that.
Folks just naturally
ain't going to like it.
When can you get
the men together?
I've got to talk to them.
Who is she?
A friend of Sam's and mine.
Name's Belle Shirley.
Well, ma'am, I reckon
if I was to light that
brush pile there on the hill
and keep it burning,
they might be here
no later than 7:00.
Well, then light it.
You'd better get
that suit off, pa.
Somebody might mistake
you for a skunk.
bringing in the sheaves
bringing in the sheaves
we shall come rejoicing
bringing in the sheaves
sowing in the morning
sowing seeds of kindness
sowing in the noontide
and the dewy Eve.
Miss Belle Shirley
to see you, sir.
Belle Shirley?
Show her in.
I came here to see my brother.
I was told I'd have
to have your permission.
- Is that true?
- Belle, I...
well, may I see
my brother or not?
I'll be glad to take you to him.
I want you to know
that I'm doing
everything I can
to clear your brother
of the charges
against him, Belle.
And captain Starr?
There's nothing anyone
can do for captain Starr.
You should know that
as well as I do, Belle.
- Belle.
- Ed.
Unlock the door.
How are you, captain?
Just fine and dandy, miss Belle.
The government can't seem
to do enough for us.
Just look at this supper.
I bet general Grant never
ate better than that.
Can we be by ourselves
for a few minutes,
or is that against orders too?
It's all right, Belle.
You can sit right here.
It's mighty nice of you, major.
Sending your band over
to cheer me up
in my last moments, so to speak.
A fellow can't help
appreciating a thing like that,
especially when he's about to
come to the end of his rope.
in the sheaves
bringing in the sheaves
bringing in
the sheaves...
lock it.
Come and get
your supper, captain.
It's getting cold.
- What are you...?
- Shh.
- Start reaching.
- I'm reaching.
- Blue Duck, hurry up.
- What are you up to now?
You didn't think I was gonna sit by and
let them get away with it, did you?
- Hurry up. Hurry up.
- Belle, you can't do this.
It's insane.
You watch me.
Hurry up.
Stop it. Stop it.
What are you trying to do?
We aim to say
a few words to the lord
for Sam Starr, brother,
before you hang him.
Get that thing out of my ear.
You can't go in there now.
He's busy.
Not too busy to repent, brother.
We always hold all-night meetings
before a hanging, brother,
just in case the lamb
wants to return to the fold.
Get up.
Get up.
Get going, Blue Duck.
Come on, get up.
Come on.
Come on.
bringing in the sheaves
bringing in the sheaves
bringing in the sheaves
we shall come rejoicing
bringing in
the sheaves.
bringing in
the sheaves...
Well, when am I to be sworn in?
- Into what?
- Your army.
Sorry, I haven't
a petticoat brigade.
Well, then form one.
Haven't I enough troubles?
But surely you owe me that much
after I saved your life.
What could you do? You've probably
never fired a shot in your life.
You could teach me.
Come here, closer.
So that you can put
your arms around me?
Well, if you want to learn,
the first thing you gotta know
is how to make a smooth, quick draw.
In this neck of the woods
a man's age is measured
by the number of split seconds
he can take off his draw
like this.
See how I filed off
that front sight?
That's so it won't catch
in my holster.
And don't stop to aim.
You haven't time for that.
Shoot by sense of direction. Think
you can remember that much?
I'll try.
See those leaves over there?
Let's see how close
you can come to one of them.
You mean, you want me to try
and put a hole through it?
Like this?
Or shall I just cut it off... this?
Well, I guess you'll catch on.
Shall I raise my right
hand and kneel?
Now wait a minute, Sam Starr.
There's nothing in the
regulations about this.
I mean it, Belle. I've meant it
from the first minute I saw you.
I bet you told that to every
girl between here and St. Louis.
Saying it and meaning it
are two different things.
When I want to be kissed,
I'll let you know.
In the meantime, keep your
filthy hands off me.
Where are you off to?
- Home.
- Home?
Where else should we be going?
But, Ed, we can't
go down there now.
They'll only throw you back
in jail again, and me too.
That's no worse than hiding out
here in the hills like gophers.
But we don't have to hide out.
We can work with captain Starr,
go where he goes.
Is this your idea?
I haven't opened my mouth.
Do you realize you're suggesting
that you become a common bandit?
Captain Starr is not a bandit.
He's a soldier.
No matter what you say
or what he says,
he's an outlaw
with a price on his head.
I've thought this all out.
It's no use trying to excuse
him or to excuse ourselves.
We've acted like idiots.
Now all we can do is to go
back and take our medicine.
That's not true.
Sam's fighting for the South
and everything it stands for.
Aren't you?
Of course.
You see?
Haven't you caused
enough trouble already?
Why don't you
tell her the truth...
that you love
this sort of thing,
that fighting's in your blood,
it's what you live for.
If it wasn't for the South,
it would be for something
else, anything else.
Don't you really mean that
I'm not the kind of man
you want your sister
to have anything to do with,
that I'm not a gentleman,
like major Crail, for instance?
You can correct me
if I'm wrong, captain.
Or say that he's everything
that you believe him to be...
you've still got to remember
that you're a woman, Belle.
You're my sister.
There isn't anything
I wouldn't do for you
except stand by and see you
throw your life away.
Now please come home with me
before it's too late.
I can't, Ed.
I'll never go back,
not as long as there's
a Yankee in this state.
It's not just 'cause
they killed father,
burned our home,
threw you in jail.
It's bigger than that.
It's what they're doing to people
like us all over the South,
what they'll do to Missouri
too if we don't stop them.
You won't stop them this way.
You'll only make things worse.
Would you rather crawl to them?
If necessary, yes.
You're my brother, Ed.
I love you.
I love you more than anything.
But if you ever do,
I hope I never see you again.
Now go on, go on home.
And when you see Tom Crail,
you can tell him
there's one Shirley
that isn't afraid of him
or the whole North.
It looks as if you've got me
in your army, captain,
whether you want me or not.
What kind of a man
do you think I am?
What do you mean?
How long do you think I can
keep my mind on what I'm doing?
I still don't know
what you're talking about.
You told me when you wanted me
to kiss you you'd tell me so.
Well, I'll tell you
when I'm ready.
All right,
but I can't go on sitting around
doing nothing, just waiting
Well, they lit out,
took to the brush
as sure as gospel.
I reckon that'll teach
them blue bellies
to keep out of these here hills
on weekdays and Sundays.
Come on, let's get out of here.
I reckon I'm ready now, captain.
I therefore pronounce you
husband and wife.
Friends, we've had
a heap of fun together,
but that's nothing to what it's
gonna be like from now on.
We've got Crail and
his blue bellies on the run
and I mean to keep them
that way.
That's a-saying it, Sam!
Every day
we're getting stronger,
folks coming in from all over.
They know me and they
know I mean business.
Three months ago they figured
all they had to do
was stick up a sign
warning folks not to have
anything to do with me,
and I was licked.
Look at them today,
willing to pay $10,000
to get their hands on me.
And that's just the beginning.
Before I'm through, I'm gonna
run things in this state.
You're doing it, Sam!
And here's the one
you can thank for it.
If it hadn't been for her,
wouldn't any of us be here.
But the thing is, we are here.
And all I got to say is I sure
am glad I ain't a Yankee.
look away, look away
look away, Dixie Land...
look away, look away
look away, Dixie Land
I wish I was in Dixie,
hooray hooray...
did anyone tell you you're
the best-dressed woman here?
And why shouldn't I be,
as the wife of the biggest
spender in all Missouri?
Well, with uncle Sam
such a liberal backer...
When you were talking,
you sounded different.
I don't know.
You still feel the same as I do
about what we're doing,
don't you?
I feel as you do
about everything.
I always will.
Oh, Sam,
I do love you.
We shall come rejoicing
bringing in the sheaves
sowing seeds
of kindness...
we shall come rejoicing
bringing in the sheaves.
You ride right on up there
to the sergeant, boys.
Take them things
off your eyes now.
- Howdy, Blue Duck.
- Howdy, Sarah.
- What you got there?
- A couple fellows want to see Sam.
Did you teach them
how to pray yet?
No, but I've got them
edging that way.
Get down now.
Here's captain Sam Starr.
What's your names?
Cole. I'm John.
That's my brother Jim.
Cole? You the Cole
brothers from Texas?
You know, I'm running
things here.
That's why we come.
Folks have been talking
about you all over.
What are they saying?
They say that you got the state of
Missouri right where you want it.
What do you think
of that, Belle?
Were you ever
in the confederate army?
- Yes, ma'am.
- For four years.
We was with Quantrill for a
spell, till they got him.
They ain't no command that we've ever
been with that done surrendered yet.
You hungry?
We could do with a mite.
Just a little
sidemeat or something.
See that these boys get fed
and bring them back.
I want to talk to them.
A mighty nice layout
you got here, captain.
It's improving.
Belle, what's wrong?
Cole brothers... I can't say
as I like their looks.
An army doesn't fight
on its looks.
You sound as if you'd heard
of them before. Where?
Oh, roundabout.
They got quite a name.
For what?
I don't know,
but they don't look like
the kind of people who give
a hoot about the South
and what we're fighting for.
You don't think I'd let them
come in if I wasn't sure?
No, but...
remember, you can't
always tell a patriot
by the kind of clothes he wears.
Look at you.
Stop at the next bend.
He ain't here, ma'am.
Where did he go?
He said he had some
business to finish
down the road a spell.
Said if you woke up
to tell you not to worry.
What sort of business?
I don't know.
Who did he go with?
Them Cole brothers and
some more of the boys.
Pshaw, you don't have
to worry, miss Belle.
He'll be back.
- Are you alone?
- Yes.
I want to talk to you.
How did you know
where to find me?
- Blue Duck told me.
- But nobody's supposed...
You needn't be afraid.
You're still my sister.
What is it you want?
Belle, do you know
what's happening,
what your men are doing?
Exactly what I told you we'd do,
show them Missouri's one place...
I mean the men who've come
in here to join you,
the scum of this country.
What do you know about the
men who've come in here?
I know they're the most
notorious gang
of cutthroats
in the South,
men who've never even
heard of the Confederacy,
who only want to grab what
they can for themselves
and use you and Sam as a shield.
Did your friend Tom Crail
send you up here to say that?
Nobody sent me.
I came because I know you
better than you know yourself.
I know you wouldn't knowingly
stand for the things
that the Cole brothers and men like
them are persuading Sam to do.
John and Jim Cole came
here to fight with us.
They do exactly what we tell
them to do and nothing more.
There isn't any crime
you can mention
they haven't committed.
And just being with you hasn't
changed them. They're no good.
Well, we're not running
a Sunday school.
As long as they obey orders.
Has Sam ordered them
to rob our own people?
Of course not.
You know as well as I do
we've never even touched a cent
that didn't belong
to the government.
Has he ordered them
to beat and shoot
innocent citizens
who get in their way?
No, but your friend
Tom Crail has
when he started taking
people's guns away from them
so they couldn't protect
themselves; throwing them in jail,
trying to make them betray us.
Wait, Belle.
I've got to make you wake up
to what you and Sam
are doing to this state,
troops everywhere,
radicals in congress
howling their heads off
for reconstruction,
murders, robberies, bitterness,
neighbor against neighbor.
Isn't that all the more reason
we should stay here and fight?
Try to remember when
we were children, Belle,
the love we had for each other.
You think I'd lie to you now
or do anything to hurt you?
I used to worry
about us as individuals.
I don't anymore.
The Shirleys have petered out.
We don't matter.
We are finished.
But Missouri matters.
Come home with me now.
Let me take you to Tom Crail.
Give yourself up.
Take your punishment.
Or go away. Go to Texas.
Go anywhere.
Only let the world know
that you won't stand
for a lot of outlaws coming in here
ruining everything we've loved.
Now you listen to me, Ed.
I'm Sam Starrs wife.
I love him and he loves me.
I know he wouldn't...
he couldn't do the things
you say he did.
So please go
before he comes back
and makes you.
All right,
maybe Sam doesn't know.
Only promise me
one thing,
that you'll ask him.
And try to believe this,
no matter what's happened,
you'll always be
the same sister
I used to know and love.
Nothing can ever change that.
Who is that?
I don't know.
Kind of looks like
a stranger to me.
Mighty fine-looking clothes
to be wearing up here.
Oh, Ed, Ed.
Something's burning me.
I hurt so.
Yes, darling, I know, I know.
You called me "darling."
You and I
we're just like we used to be.
Aren't we?
Then it's all right.
I don't mind.
Pro... promise me
you'll tell Sam what I said.
Tell him I said
that I know you love Missouri,
that you wouldn't
do anything...
I can't die
till you promise.
I promise.
Reminds me of a story
I used to know
about an old darky...
Oh, Ed.
Belle, what is it?
What's happened?
Oh, Sam, Sam.
Belle darling,
what's the matter?
Ed's dead.
They... somebody shot him.
Who did it?
What does it matter who did it?
He's dead.
He came up here
to tell me that...
Sam, these men,
the Coles,
some of the others,
they're not doing
what Ed said, are they?
They're not thieves
and robbers, are they?
This is war, Belle.
In a war a lot of things
happen that we don't like,
but that's what war is.
You didn't answer me.
Listen, Belle,
we've got 250 men with us
and more coming in all the time.
Those men have to be
fed, clothed and paid.
You can't expect an army to fight
and not get something out of it.
And the only way we can get
it is, well, off the land.
But that's stealing.
If they felt about the
South the way we do,
why, they wouldn't do that.
They... Sam,
we've got to quit now,
this very minute.
We've got to go back,
give ourselves up.
No matter what happens,
we've got to show them that...
It's too late.
No, it isn't.
Ed said maybe
we could go to Texas.
There are a lot of southerners
out there like us.
Oh, Sam, that's what we'll do.
We'll go to Texas.
you will go, won't you?
You've got to.
Oh, Sam.
As soon as I finish
one more job.
What job?
Look at this.
There's one of these
sticking on every fence post
and hickory tree
between here
and St. Louis.
Yes, I know, but
you wouldn't want the governor to
think I'm not red-blooded, would you?
But Sam, you...
Listen, Belle, I know this Johnson.
I know all about him.
I know that if we ever
had him for 10 minutes,
we could dictate our own terms.
We could run every Yankee clear out
of the state, drive out every...
But, Sam, that's kidnapping.
In the army we call that
"taking prisoners."
You'd be insane
to go down there now.
Why, there'll be
troops everywhere.
They'd wipe you out.
Not the way we got it planned.
you know I want to fight
as much as you do.
I always have.
And I always said if I died,
all right, I'd die,
but not this way.
Whose idea was this?
Well, the Cole brothers
and the rest of...
I knew it.
It's not freedom they want,
it's ransom.
this is our last chance.
Does this mean more to you
than I do?
What do you mean by that?
I told you I was quitting.
Stop talking crazy.
You're my wife. You're
going to stay right here.
You're not going anywhere.
I couldn't wear this.
Not as long as I knew
we didn't think and feel alike.
My baby.
Baby, my baby.
Ed's dead.
Oh, miss Belle, you'd better
come inside and lay down.
Somebody might see you out here.
No no, I'm gonna give myself up.
Miss Belle.
Captain Starrs
gonna do something awful.
I've got to tell them.
It's the only way
I know how to help him.
But you can't give yourself up.
No telling what
they might do to you.
I don't care.
Get the buggy.
Go into town see major Crail.
Tell him I'll be
waiting for him here.
Oh, I can't do it. Don't ask
me to do it, miss Belle.
I just can't do it.
But you've got to.
There isn't a moment to lose.
Yes'm, I'll hurry.
- Son, son.
- Yes, pa?
Run right over
to the courthouse.
Tell that Yankee major Crail
I got to see him right away.
Tell him I said
it's mighty important.
But, pa, I thought they told
us to stay off the street.
Go on, do as I said.
Miss Belle!
Miss Belle, they're fixing
to get you and captain Sam.
It's a trap. The whole town is full
of soldiers with guns,
every window, door,
ready to shoot
the minute you and
captain Sam show up.
Where are you going?
I can't let him
be killed like this,
without even a chance.
I've got to let him know.
No no, miss Belle,
it's too late.
They'll get you too.
But he's my husband.
No matter what he's done,
he's my husband
and I love him.
I know.
I knowed that the very
minute you laid eyes on him.
Which way did they go?
They're circling around
so as to come in
on the other side of town.
Is Blue Duck with them?
He's gone on ahead.
Seems he's to shoot off
his gun for a signal
if everything ain't all right.
Thanks, Sarah.
Oh, you can't go into town
at a time like this.
It doesn't matter. I was
gonna give myself up anyhow.
Give up?
It's what Ed really
wanted me to do.
Besides, maybe then Sam
will quit too.
Tell him...
tell him he's got to.
Why, they might hang you.
Ain't no man ever lived
worth risking your neck for.
- Any sign of them?
- No, sir.
I went as far as the edge of the
river and didn't see a thing.
Very well. Go back to your post
and keep your men under cover
- until further orders.
- Yes, sir.
Might be a wild
goose chase, colonel.
Might be.
We put those posters where they
couldn't help seeing them.
And if I know Sam Starr, he
won't pass up an opportunity
to raise a rumpus of some sort,
shoot up the town or...
oh, I know he'll show up.
Well, even if he doesn't,
the governor won't complain.
He'll still make his speech.
last night she died
toll the bell
for lovely Nell
my sweet...
Halt. Where do you
think you're going?
Me? I ain't
going nowheres.
What are you doing
with that gun?
I was just fixing to go
possum hunting.
Oh, let the old fool go.
All right,
but keep off the roads.
Nellie was a lady...
That's Blue Duck.
Something's wrong.
Let's get out of here, captain.
Yes, sir, it's the low-downest
thing I ever heard of.
Makes me plumb sick
to my stomach.
Give me another whisky.
Join me for a drink, friend?
Any of you gentlemen
want a drink?
Give me a bit of that rye.
I'm all out of rye.
Tell major Crail captain Starr
presents his compliments
and would like
to speak with him.
You can go in now, sir.
I understand
you have a woman here
who is said to be Belle Starr.
Said to be?
You've seen this woman yourself?
But you haven't paid
the reward money.
Then I shouldn't
advise you to do so
until after the
identification is complete.
I'm sorry, captain.
As much as I wanted
to get Belle,
I never meant it
to be like this.
My wife's mammy's outside.
She'll tell you whether
this is Belle Starr or not.
May we see her?
Send Jasper Tench
into the back room.
This man has shot
the wrong woman, major.
- This is not my wife.
- Huh! That's a lie.
You're just saying that
so as I won't get the reward.
Ask her.
She'll tell you.
No, sir.
I ain't seen this lady
in my whole life before.
She's lying too.
They made it up.
They hate me.
You always hated me too,
just like all them Shirleys.
But you ain't gonna
get away with it.
I'll go to court.
I'll prove it's her.
I reckon I ought to know.
I shot her.
You know it's her.
I see'd you with her.
I know why you're doing this.
You was in love with her yourself,
just like everybody said.
That's why you ain't
caught her before.
You was in love with her.
That don't give you
no right to cheat me
after all I've done for you.
Get out.
Get out of here.
I won't. I want my money.
I'm glad I shot her.
I'm glad. No one'll ever
get the best of me.
You take your hands off.
You take your hands off me.
- I'll walk myself.
- Take your...
Major, if you don't mind,
I'd like to have
just one more look
to make sure.
I understand.
I'll be in my office.
It was all my fault.
If she'd started out
with the right kind of man...
No, sir.
No, sir, Mr. Sam.
You oughtn't to say
a thing like that.
Miss Belle wouldn't
have been happy
with nobody else excepting you.
I-I knowed her
ever since she was born.
I-I've hold her
in my arms.
I knowed her inside out.
why, you's the only man
that could have made her happy.
Why, the very last thing
she ever said to me was...
"I love him.
I don't care what he'd done.
I loves him."
so, Mr. Sam,
you oughtn't to say
a thing like that.
You're still positive
that woman is not Belle Starr?
I'm positive.
I knowed all the time
that miss Belle Starr
weren't in yonder.
Me too.
In the first place,
captain Starr
ain't gonna let nobody
shoot miss Belle.
And in the second place,
it ain't like she's
no plain, ordinary
human woman like everybody else.
- In the first place...
- She ain't?
Can an ordinary woman change
herself into a red fox
whenever she wants to?
Can she?
Miss Belle do that?
Sure she do it.
Ain't more than a half hour ago
she come lickety-splitting
down the road.
And when she seen me,
she turned herself
right in front of my eyes
and ran off laughing
fit to kill.
Excepting it ain't no
fox's laugh,..
It was miss Belle's.
Well, doggone.
She's what the white folks call
a legend.
A legend?
What is a legend?
A legend is something
that can change itself over into
a red fox when it wants to.
Well, brother, let me
tell you one thing,
do ever I meet
one of them red foxes,
I'm sure gonna take
my hat off in a hurry.