Comanche Station (1960) Movie Script

Suit yourself.
Get on your feet.
Do like I tell you.
Now get on that mule before
he decides to use that Winchester.
All right, lady, what's your name?
- Mrs Lowe. Nancy Lowe.
- From Lordsburg?
- Yes.
- I should have known.
Mind gathering some sticks, ma'am?
No, not at all.
Now, that's gonna be kinda hard to do,
sitting up there.
Mr Cody, you said
you should have known who I was.
What did you mean by that?
A month ago, Comanche jumped
your coach halfway to Lords,
butchered the whip and shotgun
and took you alive.
I suppose most everybody around here
knows about that.
Then my husband didn't send you for me?
No, ma'am.
- Well, how...
- Talked to a tame Indian up Casa Verde way.
Said the Comanche were holding
a white woman. Holding her for trade.
- So you came after me?
- Yes, ma'am.
- Why?
- Seemed like a good idea.
You could have been killed.
Yes, ma'am. Come morning, we'll swing south.
Two days will put us into Lordsburg.
Good night, Mrs Lowe.
If you'd had a woman taken by the Comanche,
and you got her back,
how would you feel, knowing...
If I loved her, it wouldn't matter.
- Wouldn't it?
- No, ma'am. It wouldn't matter at all.
Comanche Station.
Station man likely rode the eastbound
to Case Verde.
Doubled back on the Lordsburg run.
I'll grain and water the animals.
Mr Cody, I could take the stage
on to Lordsburg from here.
I've been enough trouble.
I started taking you back to Lords,
and that I full intend to do.
Much obliged, Cody.
We needed that extra gun.
Dobie! Get up on that rise.
Make sure them devils don't lay out in the
weeds and wait till dark to come killing.
Yes, sir.
You the station man's woman?
This here is Mrs Lowe.
Well, now, how about that?
Hey, Frank, this here is Mrs Lowe.
We've been looking this country
clear over for you.
- You've been looking for me?
- Yes, ma'am.
Just about every man in the territory's
been out beating the brush.
You've got a worth, Mrs Lowe.
Ain't that right, Frank?
Might've figured you'd beat me to it, Cody.
Frank, better catch up to your partner,
and you and him drag them dead Indians
up on that hill with you.
Do like he says.
- Lane.
- Hello.
- Those bucks, they had paint on.
- So?
Couldn't be you're carrying
Comanche hair on those mules, could it?
We ain't scalp hunters, Cody. You know that.
Do I?
You'd do anything for bounty.
Look, me and the boys rode in
to Ransom Canyon, same as you did.
Thought Mrs Lowe here
was still up for trade.
They come at us and we run.
It was worth a try, though.
Ain't every day a man gets a chance
to make that amount of money.
Don't you know how much
your husband's offering
the man brings you back, Mrs Lowe?
Didn't he tell you?
Five thousand dollars.
Can't say as I blame him.
Pure shame you beat me to her, Cody.
Yes, sir, pure.
I've heard about men like you.
Comancheros, I think they call them.
Well, it won't be necessary for you
to take me on to Lordsburg.
And I'll see to it
my husband pays you your bounty.
- Now, hold on to him, boys.
- We got him.
All right, here goes.
That liniment will do it.
Get him, Dobie.
DOBIE: Oh, get away from me, you mule!
LANE: Come on! Come on, Dobie, grab him!
DOBIE: I'm trying!
LANE: That's it, Dobie,
don't be scared of him.
Hold him, Dobie!
He don't seem hurt too bad.
The bulletjust creased his hide.
Nothing like jackass liniment.
That'll cure anything.
Been a long time, Cody.
- Last time I seen you was...
- Fort McKavett.
That's right.
The day you busted me out of the army.
I never could figure why.
Killing Indians,
that's what we were there for.
Was it?
Seems like we've been over this before.
I heard you'd given up the critter soldiers.
I kind of figured you'd stay with it,
being a major and all.
Command was wiped out at McKavett.
Yeah, I know.
- Least they can't blame me for that.
- Can't they?
I was doing my job!
You overran a village of tame Indians.
- I didn't know.
- You're a liar.
That's what you said
at my court-martial, didn't you?
Had my way, they'd have hung you.
You said that, too.
"Overland Stage.
"The Lordsburg run leaves...
"Overland Stage, the Lordsburg run leaves
"Casa Verde, sunrise.
"Team change, Comanche Station, sunset."
Uh... "Weather...
"Weather permitting."
I didn't know you could read, Dobie.
Well, I ain't much with books
and newspapers, but plain words,
you know, like signs and wrappers
and such, I do pretty good.
Which one's Comanche?
Right there.
You planning on taking the coach
to Lords, are you, Mrs Lowe?
Yes, I am.
Wouldn't suppose
you'd hold kind to that, Cody.
The lady here says she's going
to take the coach to Lords.
I'm not a prisoner any more, Mr Lane.
Aren't you?
- Lane.
- Hello.
There's plenty of light left.
If you were to leave now, you could cover
a good amount of ground before night.
We say anything about
going anywhere, did we?
- I didn't.
- No close town around.
Now that's a fact.
Nothing but empty between here and Lords.
No, I think we'll stay around for a while.
Me, I get a kick out of watching
that coach come in,
waving to the people.
Don't you, boys?
That is unless you have
any objections, Mr Cody.
I don't really see that
it's any of his business.
Now, you took the words
right out of my mouth.
- Mr Lane.
- Yes, ma'am?
That stage should have
been here by now, shouldn't it?
The driver likely saw war signs,
laid over the night at Casa Verde.
I see.
Your husband's a fortunate man,
getting you back.
I guess you'll always wonder, though,
why he didn't come after you himself.
I don't mean to low-grade him, mind you.
After all, he did put up
five thousand dollars.
That's love of a sort, I suppose, but..."
Were you mine,
I'd come looking to find you
even if I had to die in the doing.
Good night, Mr Lane.
That stage don't get here come morning,
me and the boys'll be obliged
to see you to Lordsburg.
She's something, ain't she?
Did you mean that, Ben,
about us taking her on into Lords?
Why not?
Cody won't like that.
Country's crawling with Comanche.
He's gonna need all the help he can get.
He ain't about to give up
that five thousand.
That's right.
We could kill him.
Did that, that woman would witness
against us. Ain't that a fact, Ben, huh?
If she was alive.
They said that Mr Lowe fella...
They said he'd be willing to pay
even if a man brought his wife in dead.
Why would he do a fool thing like that?
Claims just knowing for sure
would ease his loss.
- Well, that's crazy.
- That's the way he looks at it.
You mean, the woman?
Five thousand.
That's a lot of money.
I heard what Lane said about
your husband. He's wrong.
Rode out to find you,
he'd have likely got you both killed.
- Is that all, Mr Cody?
- No, ma'am. That, er...
That money offered to get you back, I...
I suppose you're going to tell me that
you didn't know anything about that.
I didn't know.
I don't believe you.
I didn't think you would.
Were you awake?
Frank, you ever get the feeling
we ain't along?
With Ben.
Well, the way he treats us.
You know, "Do this, do that."
He says, "Jump," and we say, "Which way?"
So, we might as well not even have a head.
Well, if you want to ride, Dobie,
you can go. Ben's not gonna stop you.
You come along, too, would you?
You mean break with Ben?
No, I guess not, huh?
Well, it's nothing personal, it's just that
a man sorta gets used to a thing.
Sure hope I amount to something.
My pa, he used to say,
Dome, no matter what you do
"or who you do it to,
"be sure you amount to something."
Well, what did he mean by that?
Oh, a lot of things.
Like what?
Well, like Cody.
- Cody?
- He does.
He does what?
Amount to something.
How do you know?
Well, he was Army. Had braid on him.
Yeah, but not any more, he hasn't.
Oh, that don't matter. A man does one thing,
one thing in his life
he can look back on, go proud.
That's enough.
Anyway, that's what my pa used to say.
He talked all the time, didn't he?
He was a good man.
Sure is a shame.
Yeah, my Pa,
he never did amount to anything.
Good night, Frank.
What do you think, Ben?
I think we ought to get out of here.
- Cody.
- I see 'em.
- Dobie.
- Yes, sir?
Go catch up the animals.
We'd better get on to Lords
before they decide to scald us out.
We'll wait for the stage from Case Verde.
If that was coming,
it would have been here by now.
Frank's right.
They might have got cut off, forted up
at some swing stop along the way.
You sure you don't have scalps
on those mules?
You think I'd do something like that?
- I know you would.
- Look, Cody, I...
Ben! Man coming out here!
Stage turned back to Casa Verde.
Had to get back. Take care of my...
Take care of my animals.
Scalp-hunters raided a village up near Mesa.
Killed the women and small ones.
They caught 'em.
Caught 'em?
Yeah. Two no-goods from Verde,
killed them both.
That didn't stop the Comanche, though.
Been butchering the territory
one end to the other.
You'd better head and clear out.
Go on to Lordsburg before...
My horse.
Gotta take care of my horse...
We'll take care of him.
Frank, give Dobie a hand.
We're all going to Lords.
It's amazing what an Indian will give up
for a Winchester rifle
and a bolt of red calico.
Mrs Lowe, she's sure a handsome woman.
See one like that,
a man gets to thinking about
taking a wife and settling down.
Well, I admit, I never had much luck
when it comes to women.
Oh, I've run with a few.
Nothing you could call serious.
Except maybe that little gal down in Sonora.
She said right out she loved me.
Wanted to marry me.
Told everybody. Everybody but her husband.
Oh, he came within that of
doing me with a scattergun.
That taught me a lesson, though.
Always check the brand to make sure
you ain't driving another man's stock.
- Lane.
- Hello.
Back there at the station,
what I said about your mules
carrying Comanche hair, I...
Forget it.
Everybody's entitled to a mistake.
Now, you take that there Mr Lowe.
Offering all that money to get
his wife back, that's a mistake.
That amount of money has a way
of making a man go all greed inside.
Such as?
Makes them get to thinking of
doing things he might not otherwise do.
You know, it's a long way to Lordsburg.
It wouldn't surprise me
if somebody didn't
try to take that woman away from you.
Like you, for instance?
Like me, in particular.
Wait here.
Come on across.
- Come on.
- Dobie, straighten out those horses.
Come on, come on, let's get going.
We'll follow the river as far as we can.
That'll put us a full day out of the way.
If you're in a hurry, you can travel
open country. Nobody's stopping you.
We'll ride along with you.
Figured you would.
Better slip into this.
Couple more miles,
you'll be plumb out of that.
Mr Cody?
I think I owe you an apology.
No matter the reason, you did save my life.
Hadn't been me,
it would've been somebody else.
Lane told me you've brought more
whites out of Comanche country
than any other man in this territory.
Why, Mr Cody?
They traded you for five dollars worth
of goods and a Winchester, Mrs Lowe.
Figure it out for yourself.
We'll be staying here long enough
to grain the animals.
And if you've a mind to wash, there's a
hole back around the bend of the river.
Sure is a waste.
Having to do the woman.
If she was only ugly, it wouldn't be
so bad, but pretty like she is,
it's an out and out waste.
Maybe we won't have to.
I don't see any other way.
We could string along with Cody
till after he gets the money,
- and then we could...
- It won't work.
Why not?
Well, because that'd be just asking
for a hang rope.
We're gonna have to do him in anyway.
And everybody's going to
think the Comanches got him.
I never thought of that.
I still don't like it.
My folks brought me up
to be kind to a woman.
You know, "Yes, ma'am. No, ma'am."
Open doors for 'em, give 'em my chair.
Not go around killing 'em.
Well, you think I like it
any better than you do?
- No, I guess not.
- You wanna go to work, do you?
- Work?
- Making an honest living?
Oh, no, I don't think I could do that.
- I'd cowboy some.
- Well, what will that get you?
You work yourself to death for somebody,
and likely they have to
take up a collection to bury you.
- Ain't that pretty?
- Yeah.
Frank, take a ride up river
and see if they crossed ahead of us.
If they cut our track, it's gonna put us
between a rock and a hard place.
You can say that.
- How long is that woman gonna take?
- Sit down. She'll be back in a minute.
Frank! Frank!
CODY: We're getting out of here.
- You're not going to leave him like that?
- CODY: Yes, ma'am.
That ain't right, Mr Cody.
Not talking about right,
talking about staying alive.
I'll turn those stage horses loose.
They can take care of themselves
from now on.
Mr Cody, you can't leave here
until we give that man a proper grave.
You want to end up again
belonging to a Comanche buck?
CODY: We'll rest here.
We'll turn Frank's horse loose.
He'll eat his way to Lordsburg.
Yes, sir.
A saddle and a shirt. That's all Frank had.
- Sure ain't much.
- Sure ain't.
- Wasn't his fault, though.
- No?
He never knew anything but the wild side.
Man can cross over any time he's a mind.
It ain't that easy.
It ain't that easy at all.
- How old are you, Dobie?
- I don't know. Young.
Family know you're running loose
in this country, do they?
No, sir.
Fever got 'em.
Nobody to answer to,
so you threw in with the likes of Lane.
Me and Frank were riding together
up near DeValdie way.
Frank was alone, same as me.
We heard about this fella
who was looking for some young guns.
Been with him ever since.
You'll end up on a rope, Dobie.
You know that?
- Yes, sir.
- You could break with him.
I've thought about that.
I've thought about that a lot.
Frank said it.
"A man gets used to a thing."
Dobie, when we get to Lordsburg,
you can ride along with me a ways.
A man gets tired being all the time alone.
- You'd do that for me?
- Think it over, son.
LANE: Hold it. It's only me.
Get down to the river, Dobie.
- You see anything, sing out.
- Yes, sir.
- Ben?
- Hello.
We get to Lords, we ought to see
if we can hunt up some of Frank's kin.
They should be told.
Yeah, we'll do that.
I'm sure gonna miss...
miss him.
That Dobie kind of runs on
the gentle side, don't he?
Maybe too gentle.
For what?
This is a hard country, Cody.
Man's called on to do a lot of things.
Things that take spine.
Like Mrs Lowe's husband.
It took a lot of nerve to send another
man out to bring his woman back.
No, I mean it.
How does he know what's gonna happen,
throwing two together like that?
I knew me a fella once,
wife was taken in a raid.
A good-looking woman.
Kind of made you go lonely
just being around her.
Hearing her say words.
Seeing her move.
Come to think of it,
she's a lot like you, Mrs Lowe.
Anyway, he lost her and he sent
a gent out to find her and he did.
Of course, at first,
they didn't get on too good,
her thinking he'd traded her for a profit,
and him making out like
he don't care this way or that.
Now, all the time, they're getting closer
and they never even knew it.
About the second night out,
she got to thinking on it.
Got to feeling all grateful inside.
What with this fellow risking his hide
to save her while her own man stayed home,
doing who knows what.
- Well, the next thing you know...
- Lane.
I was only gonna say that that husband
never did get his woman back.
Now losing them to a Comanche,
that's one thing.
Losing them to a white,
that's something altogether else.
'Course, in this case, there's the money.
Sure would put a man to the test
having to decide between you and...
five thousand dollars, Mrs Lowe.
I'm sure glad it ain't me.
- Lane.
- Hello.
Any luck, we'll break out of Comanche
country sometime tomorrow.
- That happens, I want you gone.
- Now, you'd like that, wouldn't you?
Then you could have Mrs Lowe here
all to yourself.
MRS LOWE: Mr Cody.
- It wasn't necessary to do that for my sake.
- I didn't.
I couldn't sleep.
I'm glad.
Nothing as lonely as the night.
- Dobie?
- Yes, ma'am?
- How long have you known Cody?
- Since Comanche Station.
You didn't know him at all before that?
No, ma'am. Not face on. I'd heard about him.
How he's all the time alone, all the
time in Comanche country, looking.
Seems long ago
he lost his woman to the Indians.
Been hunting to find her ever since.
Every time he hears of a white woman
up for trade, he packs a mule and goes.
Don't matter where.
'Course, there's them
that tries to tell him his wife's dead.
But he goes right on looking.
You'd think he'd give up,
it being so long and all.
But he don't.
I guess he never will.
Sure must've been a love between them two.
Funny thing.
I guess Ben don't...
but I do... like Mr Cody.
Mrs Lowe, there's something
you ought to know.
Ben and me...
Well, sometimes he figures
we gotta do things that...
Things that just ain't...
What I'm trying to tell you is,
that no matter what happens
between here and Lords,
you stick close to Cody,
and just as close as you can.
Yes, Dobie. Yes, I will.
- Ben?
- Hello.
Maybe we ought to think again
about Cody and the woman.
Now, I know it's a lot of money, but...
You got any idea how long it would take us
to make that amount of money, Dobie?
- Three years?
- More.
Well, losing Frank and all,
that only puts us two against one.
Now, a man like Cody,
that ain't good odds, Ben.
- That ain't good odds at all.
- I know.
We can't come straight at him.
We wouldn't have a chance.
- We're gonna have to figure us a plan and...
- I have.
You have? When do we do it?
If they catch us in that open,
it's gonna make the hill higher to climb.
What do you think, Cody?
Stand your animals.
When I reach the other side of
the clearing, come on across.
What if you don't reach it?
- Circle high around.
- Cody?
Dobie, stay with the woman.
I thought I told you to circle high around.
I couldn't let them do you
without a chance, Cody.
You would've had the woman.
I never could've enjoyed spending that
five thousand if I'd done you that way.
I'll go fetch up your horse.
- Now, hold still.
- My leg's all right, Mrs Lowe.
- You got any whiskey?
- No, ma'am.
But Ben's got some of that jackass liniment.
Claims it'll cure anything.
It was a foolish thing to do,
riding out on that open alone.
- It's a wonder they didn't kill you.
- They tried.
Here it is.
But you ain't gonna make him drink it?
It's gonna hurt.
Followed that war party about a mile.
They won't be back.
- No?
- They picked up their dogs and squaws.
Means they've headed back into the hills.
They're done with killing. For now, anyway.
Then we should be in Lordsburg
by tomorrow with no trouble at all.
Yes, ma'am. No trouble at all.
We're just taking a look around
before we bed down for the night.
- So was I. Man can't be too careful.
- Yeah.
Which reminds me of a story.
Another fellow was bringing in
a wife for bounty.
Some no-goods fell in with him, rode along.
Plain what they were planning.
Just a matter of when.
- So he told 'em.
- Told 'em?
- They shouldn't try.
- But they didn't pay no heed.
Should have. He buried 'em.
That's a very sad story, Cody.
Didn't have to be.
This fella, how did he manage it,
doing all of them that way?
Comanche got one.
What happened to the other?
Let's just say he had a way with a gun.
Don't mind if I do. Don't mind at all.
Thank you, ma'am.
You cook good, Mrs Lowe.
A woman should cook good.
I'm a pretty good cook myself.
Mrs Lowe, I'm gonna miss you.
- Would you like some coffee?
- Thanks.
We'll be in Lordsburg
for sure tomorrow, won't we?
Yes, ma'am.
- Mr Cody, I'm frightened.
- Frightened?
I have a feeling
things will never be the same.
You'll forget.
You haven't.
- Dobie told me about your wife.
- Did he?
You must have loved her very much.
- Will you be staying on in Lordsburg?
- No, ma'am.
I was hoping you would.
Make things easier somehow.
Mrs Lowe, what Dobie told you,
it's been ten years ago, that happened.
Knowing you is the first in all that time
I've ever been able to forget,
even for a little while.
I'm obliged.
Get up.
Toss them on that blanket.
Now get on your animals and get out of here.
I lay eyes on you two
between here and Lords, I'll kill you.
- You got no call to do this, Cody.
- Don't I? Move.
- You know something, Ben?
- What's that?
I'm glad it's over.
Glad we didn't have to go through with it.
What would we have done
with all that money, anyway?
Different if we had a purpose.
You know, owned something of our own.
Something we could put it to,
like land or cattle or something like that.
But the way we are, I'm glad.
I bet you are, too, huh, Ben?
- Dobie.
- Yeah?
Remember me telling you I had a plan?
- Yeah.
- Well, I've still got it.
Well, this is it.
Laying out here with a long gun waiting
for Mr Cody to come riding into range.
But, Ben, we ain't got a long gun.
Ain't we?
The only way into Lordsburg, along
there, over them rocks, or past here.
All we gotta do is wait.
Better get them animals back out of sight.
- Ben.
- Hello.
I want no part of it.
Where do you think you're going?
When I thought it was over, Ben,
I felt good. I felt good inside.
I haven't felt like that in a long while.
You wouldn't be thinking of doubling back
to Cody and the woman, would you?
I've been obliged to know you, Ben.
CODY: Wait here.
Lane, he's got a gun.
I'm gonna work high around.
See if I can come in behind.
You see him, start shooting and don't stop.
CODY: Lane!
CODY: Drop the gun.
- Do that, I won't have a chance, Cody.
- As much as Dobie did.
- That was a fair fight.
- He was killed from behind.
- He was a fool.
- Depends on how you look at it.
Don't seem right we can't
work this outwith words, Cody.
Hadn't been for me,
you'd be in the ground in that canyon
back where the Comanche
jumped you, remember?
I remember.
I figured you would.
Drop the gun.
If I spin and do you,
I'll get the woman, Cody.
- I wouldn't try it.
- Got to.
- Come too far to turn back now.
- Don't do it, Ben.
It's a pure shame, ain't it?
How a man'll push himself for money.
Yes, sir. Pure.
Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!
Yes, John, I'm home.
Go help your father.
You never told me.
If you knew my man,
you'd understand he'd have to
have a reason not to come after me.
Yes, ma'am. I always figured there was.
Thank you, Mr Cody.
Hello, sweetheart.