Voila! Finally, the Rooster Cogburn
script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the John Wayne movie. This script is a transcript that was painstakingly
transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of Rooster Cogburn. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and I'll be eternally
tweaking it, so if you have any corrections, feel free to
drop me a line. You won't
hurt my feelings. Honest.
It's the law, Pecos.
We want you for train robbery
and murder of the engineer.
Get your hands on top of your heads.
Rooster J. Cogburn, step forward.
Are you Rooster J. Cogburn,
Deputy Marshal for Western Arkansas?
You know I am.
A deputy who shoots
and kills suspects in years,
is breaking the law,
not upholding it.
Let's get this straight, Judge.
Only of them died.
All were shot in the line of duty or
in self defense or attempting to flee.
You have served
this court for almost two lustrums.
You're a strong man
and a brave man, Rooster.
And you have, at times,
executed your duties faithfully.
But all too often you have
acted with excessive zeal and...
What's a lustrum, Judge?
- years. Don't interrupt me.
Pay attention to me.
This is not just a formal reprimand.
Investors go where the law protects
them, not shoots them.
Is that the kind of law
my deputy got yesterday?
I was proud to tell his wife
I shot his killers.
It seems you can't serve
this court without breaking heads
and spraying bullets. The West
has changed but you haven't.
I want your badge. - They don't know
these new-fangled laws out there.
They're still shooting
in the same direction, at me.
Your badge, Cogburn.
You let yourself go. Look at your
belly! You can't even close your coat.
You drink too much.
- I ain't had a drink since breakfast.
And I only wear this coat
in your court.
It was good enough when you needed me.
You've gone to seed, Rooster.
Lieutenant, road's out ahead.
Can we get around it?
- No, sir.
But there's a shallow down river
to take the wagon across.
Column right, ho.
Breed, we can't move nitro
over those logs.
It's just dead wood, sir.
It's easy to move.
Chipley, Grimm, dismount.
Start moving those logs.
Get the ropes. Help him.
The war is over.
The US Cavalry lost again.
Just like I told you.
Give me my money.
Don't you trust me? - Pay up, Hawk,
or try takin' the gold without me.
Don't tempt me.
Any fool can blow nitro.
The last fool who thought that
blowed himself up.
Alright, move. Fast.
We got four days' hard ridin'
and that gold shipment won't wait.
Gone to seed, have I?
Gone to seed!
A man does his job,
defends The Code,
and what does he get?
Disgrace and abuse.
- Judge say, you abuse justice.
I abuse justice? There ain't no
justice in the West no more.
Men with sand in their craw,
by duded-up Yankee lawyers
who won spellin' bees back home.
That ain't St. Louis beer.
- Kansas City.
Well, I don't like it.
Neither does Sterling.
Too sweet, ain't it, General?
Well, give me my jug.
- Judge Parker say lock it up.
Who's payin' the rent here,
him or me?
You can't lock up a man's whiskey.
I'll give you one minute to get my...
I'll get it for you.
Until you've heard what I say.
You have said enough, Judge.
None of it to my credit nor liking.
May I take a drink
with you and General Sterling?
If you don't mind such seedy company.
you were my best Marshal.
You could be again.
That account is long overdrawn,
let's let bygones be bygones.
I have an important assignment
for you. - You seem to forget, Judge.
You hung up my guns, remember?
I am retired, relieved, and rejoicing.
"l painted her, I painted her..."
Chen Lee, turn off the light.
No doubt you've heard
of Hawk's latest outrage.
The Army believe he took the nitro
for another robbery. Time's short.
You know the territory
and the scout that set up the ambush.
He run with Hawk now?
He's the best scout I ever had.
Good friend, too.
He never done a wrong thing
till he killed that Wells Fargo agent
and run away with the payroll.
We need a man with grit, Cogburn.
The government'll be mighty grateful.
For the return of the dynamite,
dollars. For Hawk, .
Now, that is information
more to my liking. - I thought so.
I want him alive.
I want him to answer to me, not you.
Then we'll see about your badge.
- I'll charge my retirement rate:
double salary, double expenses.
Can you afford me?
Rates noted and accepted.
A group of my deputies will act as
your posse. But it'll take a while.
Take a while? It'll take a miracle.
Them lily-livered lawbrokers
won't risk their necks, or you
wouldn't be here. - You'll need this.
Do the job,
and it's yours again, permanent.
Well, it goes against my grain.
I'll ride at first light.
That's right. In spite of the fact
that you locked up our whiskey.
Tell them deputies
to meet me at Bagby's.
If you can find any.
See who they have to come to
when they got a real job to do?
The old rat killer.
Probably got another lustrum in me.
What is lustrum?
years, you Chinaman.
You people come here and we help you.
You won't even learn our language.
Maybe you're right.
Here you are, sweet lady.
How're you doing little darling?
Go ahead. Hurry. As fast as you can.
Wolf. Watch. Go.
They're settlers passin' through.
- I know.
Welcome to Fort Ruby.
I am Reverend George Goodnight
and this is my daughter, Eula.
We offer you
the hospitality of our settlement.
We are God's servants here.
And we must ask you
not to sell ardent spirits or guns
to the Indians.
Civil law and God's law forbid it.
This is the law we go by, Sister.
So don't waste your preachin'
tryin' to convert us.
Please do not strip these people
of their dignity with liquor
and your worldly ways.
We beg you.
This is for your collecting plate.
Now, will you leave us be?
We're gonna camp here,
rest our horses
and take our pleasures,
with no more preachin'
from God's servants.
A brand from the burning.
- What's that you say?
Our work, sir,
is to pluck brands from the burning.
If you don't want to be plucked,
then at least show us courtesy.
I do believe you're better
at cluckin' than at pluckin'.
You're an unpleasant sort of fellow.
I'm the boldest sinner on the
Arkansas River. People remember me.
Only evil can come of your presence.
Temptation is the Devil's spawn.
You callin' the Devil, Mister?
- You do the Devil's work.
I'd shoot a man of the cloth
or a lady. So don't provoke me.
I'm not afraid. I wear God's armor.
I do not fear what man can do to me.
I do not fear a skunk.
I simply do not care for his odor.
I'm warnin' you.
You have ridden the Hoot-Owl Trail
and tasted the fruits of evil.
But justice will
catch up with you to demand payment.
The Lord is my Shepherd,
I shall not want.
He maketh me
to lie down in green pastures.
He leadeth me beside still waters.
He restoreth my soul.
He leadeth me in the paths
of righteousness in His name.
Yea, though I walk through
the valley of death, I fear no evil,
for Thou art with me.
I've had enough Sunday school.
Out of my sight, both of you.
Thy rod and thy staff,
they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me
in the presence of mine enemies.
My cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy
shall follow me in all my days.
And I will dwell in the house...
She put the fear of God
into you, Hawk?
- Bagby. - Good to have you back.
- You might say. Big game.
The Hawk. You seen him?
- He went through here yesterday.
With a wagonload of heavy cargo.
Had nine men with him.
Which way'd they go?
- Fort Ruby way.
The Winding Stair Mountains.
Took the trail out of Webber's Falls.
Fort Ruby? Last time
I heard of that it was just a memory.
There's still a settlement.
Run by a Yankee preacher
and his daughter.
Judge Parker's promised me a posse.
When it gets here, if it gets here,
send it on after me.
I ain't waitin'.
Why don't you have
some of Winona's catfish stew?
I'd love to,
Winona, but the trail's hot.
If I had my druthers, I'd pull a cork
and jaw with you. So long.
See you later.
Give him a drink. He's thirsty.
- There's gonna be trouble.
He's thirsty. You want it, do you?
I want him to drink every drop.
Come on, make him drink it.
Jerry, hitch up the wagon.
Out. Out into the fields.
Jerry, get it hitched.
Quick, now. Let's go.
To the fields. Quickly.
And lie down.
Hide. Lie down.
You are all nothing but beasts.
- Let go of my horses.
I warned you.
Move that wagon out.
For Thine is the kingdom
and the power
and the glory forever. Amen.
Our fathers lie together, Wolf.
Two decent men trying to help
and understand each other.
And whosoever shall lose
his life for my sake shall find it.
Goodbye, dear friend.
Go ahead, shoot.
We're not armed.
Seems there's been
enough shootin' here, Ma'am.
I'm of a different brand
than them that did it.
Rooster J. Cogburn, US Marshal.
You're too late, lawman.
Too late to stop 'em. But not
to hang 'em. What happened?
Last night a company of gunmen
ravaged the settlement,
killed my father and many Indians.
- I'm sorry.
Wolf's family was killed.
They will pay for it, son.
I promise you that.
For those that take the sword
must perish with the sword.
Matthew. : .
Oh. Yes, Ma'am.
I figure the leader is a lean,
He looked like that.
- That was Hawk, alright.
I'm trackin' him for the government
in Washington City.
He stole some guns and nitro
from 'em. Plans to rob a bank.
And will you stop him?
- That's my intent.
My orders are to arrest him,
take him back to Fort Smith for trial.
That's one hanging I will attend.
But there are nine of them.
I got my Navy Colt,
and a packet full of cartridges.
And a prayer on your lips, I hope.
You will have need of it.
And the government
promised me a posse,
which I figure will be
long on promise and short on posse.
Go with God, Marshal.
- God, you and the boy, Ma'am.
I'm taking you to Bagby's
trading post. You'll be safe there.
Gather your belongings.
- We're not going anywhere.
I must stay
and continue my father's work.
I will be both preacher and teacher.
I admire your sand, Sister,
but you should know
this is no place for a woman alone.
I will look after myself,
and I have done so all my life.
I won't allow it.
- You have no say in the matter, sir.
I have a lot to say. As Marshal,
I am responsible the citizens' safety.
You will pack
and come quietly, or I'll arrest you
and take you anyway.
To whom do you think
you are talking, Marshal?
You is "to whom" I'm talking.
You are bigger than I am,
but physically, that is all.
In this situation, that is enough.
- You mean you will use brute force?
That is exactly what I mean.
Oh, yes. I will go.
But not because of your threats.
Saddle our horses, Wolf. We'll look
for grangers to help us rebuild.
You have a lot of brass, Marshal.
You will have need
of it before we're through.
She sings a loud tune.
To make sure
the Good Lord hears me.
Yeah. Go saddle the horses, son.
You pushed your luck too far.
Now we got Injuns after us, too.
We gotta risk it. We're going through.
- Hold it.
When I signal, follow.
When I throw the stuff,
Bring it on down.
I'd say I earned my money today.
what I paid you for, that's all.
- Yeah, it's me...
and what's left of Fort Ruby.
Take care of 'em, Bagby.
You know Miss Goodnight?
Are you alright, Miss Goodnight?
- I'm fine, thank you. Hello, Winona.
Them deputies show up yet?
- Not a sign of 'em.
I'll bet my drunken cat they
ain't comin'. I ain't waitin' for 'em.
Bagby, that is a strong-minded woman.
Be careful, or she'll end up owning
your store and you workin' for her.
Keep the faith, Ma'am.
See you at the hangin'.
Wolf, come with me.
Wolf, on my horse.
Bye-bye. Thank you.
Mr. Bagby, I'm purchasing this
Winchester, the scabbard and shells.
Thank you for your hospitality.
But, Miss Goodnight...
- Goodbye, sir. God bless you.
Alright, what is it?
We're riding with you.
- You're riding nowhere with me.
We won't slow you down, sir.
- Right, 'cause you ain't comin'.
We'll have to ride hard
to overtake them. - We ain't goin'.
I ride hard and alone.
I eat light and sleep on the ground.
Understood. We should reach
Cheyenne Springs by sundown.
Breed. Hurry up.
Hawk don't trust a hired gun
at his back. - Just at his side.
Not there, neither. Breed's
not on our side. Breed's a whore.
Hawk paid for his services. He'd sell
us to the law if they paid better.
Let's get movin'.
We're fightin' time.
just wait a minute, please.
I feel that you are angry with me.
You are an almighty trial.
This is man's work, and dangerous.
For whatsoever a man soweth,
that shall he also reap.
I will make sure of what
my father's murderers reap.
You will make sure of nothing, sister.
You do your crocheting or fingernail
fixin', but stay out of my way.
Just a minute, I'm not through.
It came to me at Bagby's
that I must help pursue these men.
I cannot shirk it. You're
a peace officer. I'm sure that
you understand duty.
I dreamed that life was beauty.
I woke and found that life was duty.
I don't suppose you know
the poems of Ella Sturgis Hooper?
No, ma'am, and I ain't interested
in hearing 'em. Forget your duty.
Your own General Lee
found it the most beautiful word.
What do you know about Lee?
That he was a good Christian
and was whipped by Yankees.
If they ever give 'em the vote,
God help us.
Keep her over here. Slow.
Speed it up.
We're sure takin'
a chance with this nitro.
With broke backs.
I'd rather go down shootin'.
The nitro. Support that nitro.
- Get it under there.
Leroy, get back here.
Get to prying here. We'll hold it.
Get under it. Easy, easy.
Wheel just popped. Put it back on.
We'll be out of here in minutes.
The axle's broke, Hawk.
- Then fix it. Don't waste time.
The axle's broke, Hawk.
It'll take till morning to fix it.
Nothin' is keeping that gold from me.
Nothin', you hear? Nothin'!
I'll ride with Breed to Goldstrike,
he'll size up the bank, I'll plan.
If this nitro ain't in town by Friday,
the game's over. - Hawk,
I'm gonna ride along with you.
Gotta get to a Doc, before it's quits.
Ride along, but don't hold me back.
I ain't got time for no cripple.
We won't let you down, boss.
- Don't. I ain't a good loser.
Wolf, I got a hunch
we're just a little way from trouble.
Get up there
and take a care look-see around.
I'll try and keep
her ladyship occupied. - Yes, sir.
we are here together and it is
our obligation to be on good terms.
If we avoid remarks on the Civil War,
there'll be no open hostility.
Sister, why don't you step down.
We'll give the horses' backs a rest.
Get a little stretch.
Why are you called Rooster?
I never heard a man called that.
I guess in the old days,
I was cocky,
kind of a struttin' bird.
- And have not changed much, as I see.
My tail feathers
may droop a bit, and my wattles show,
but I can still out-crow anything
in the barnyard. - No doubt.
But can you outdo them?
If I couldn't, I wouldn't have
much to crow about, would l?
It all depends on the barnyard.
Is Rooster your Christian name?
I was baptized Reuben.
But I ask you not to repeat that.
Why not? It's a name to be proud of.
Reuben led a great tribe in Israel.
Well, it hit rock bottom with me.
I'm bound to ask you this. Is your
name in the Lamb's Book of Life?
Sister, are you licensed to preach?
What church do you belong to?
They let women preach in it?
I'm not an exhorter, Mr. Cogburn.
Service to others is my witness.
I'm a teacher,
and a journeyman nurse.
Ayah, I can pull teeth.
I'm sorry that you don't like me.
I just don't like the way you talk.
How should I talk?
Talking of such things is my business.
It isn't that, it's the way you talk.
"Ayah, ayah." What is that business?
Oh, it's my Yankee speech
that you find offensive? - I do.
I must try to remedy that.
Paul tells us
that we must be all things to all men.
I'll have to learn
some vulgar southern expressions.
I'll learn to be lazy and slovenly.
I'll tell you something else
that Paul said:
"Let your women be silent in church."
How do you know that passage?
Judge Parker is partial to it.
You're not the only one with a Bible.
He's got a big one.
Make two or three of yours.
It's not the size that's important,
but your knowledge of its contents.
"Repent ye therefore
and be converted."
You have somethin' to say
from that book for every occasion.
Ayah. It was my primer. In Boston
children learn to read from it.
I figured you for a Yankee,
but you look more like a prairie bird.
Boney and tough.
As the only girl
in a family of boys,
I grew up more strong and independent
than a woman should be.
Amen, Sister. Amen.
Marshal, you're praying.
That's the first step
on the road to salvation.
This ain't no
church social nor revival meeting.
So don't try to convert me, Sister,
or I'll end up with a empty sack.
a wagon and riders.
Ayah, that's the wagon.
I recognize that wagon.
Just the way I figured.
You pay heed to every word I say,
until this thing is over.
Wolf, you to take the horses
and hide them.
Signal from up there when they come.
When I yell "posse" shoot in the air,
make a lot of noise.
Don't shoot at them,
you might hit the nitro.
You got that straight?
Let me show you, there.
You pull that back,
point it up in the air, squeeze it.
Do you understand?
- Yes, I think I understand.
Get up behind
that broken log. - Right.
Don't forget, that thing's loaded.
- No, no, I'll remember.
What's going on? Get these logs
out of the road. - I wouldn't do that.
Rooster J. Cogburn, US Marshal.
My posse has got you surrounded.
Keep your hand away from the rifles.
Anybody can say he's a Marshal.
Where's all your men?
You know who I am,
you riff-raff, and what I'll do.
I'm arrestin' you all and takin' you
and the wagon to Fort Smith.
Clamp your hands on your heads
and get off the horses.
He ain't got nobody with him.
He's bluffin' - Hope so.
You're all talk.
We ain't afraid of you.
Next one goes into that nitro.
OK, dismount, boys.
That's more like it.
Damn your murderin' hides.
Meet your maker.
He's got a posse.
- Let's get out of here.
You alright, Sister?
Wolf, give me a hand with the logs.
- Yes, sir.
Marshal, thank God you're safe.
Wolf, that was a great shot.
- But I didn't shoot.
You shot him across that nitro?
You could have killed us all.
If I hadn't shot him,
you'd be dead instead of him.
Were you trying to talk him to death?
If that worked,
you wouldn't need that rifle.
I'll to say a few words over the dead.
Good or bad, they're God's own.
They look like they're past carin',
but go ahead.
Lord have mercy on us for what we did.
"l am the resurrection
and the life," sayeth the Lord.
"He that believeth in me,
though dead, yet shall he live.
And whosoever liveth and believeth
in me shall never die.
The Lord gave and He taketh away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord.
We brought nothing
into this world
and it is certain
that we can take nothing out.
Unto Almighty God
I commend these souls."
Hurry it up, Sister,
or we'll be joinin' them.
"For thine is the Kingdom,
the power and glory forever. Amen.
Earth to earth,
ashes to ashes and dust to dust."
Dust to dust. Get on the wagon.
My father's murderer
was not among them.
There's a Federal bank at Goldstrike.
Hawk's there settin' up the stealin'.
I'm gonna bait me a rat-trap.
And this is the cheese.
you do not end up as the cheese.
Sister, your confidence in me
I' gonna take this wagon
to Sulfur Bottom and wait for them.
Spring my trap on my own ground.
That's not what's worryin' me.
You gotta help me protect her, son.
- Yes, we'll protect her. - Good boy.
How'd a blue-blooded lady like you
ever learn to shoot like that?
My first beau taught me
how to shoot and equitation.
- Ayah. You know. Horseback riding.
I've been doin' that for lustrums.
Ayah. I see.
my first beau was
a dashing young man. A bit simple.
I think my manner scared him off.
He taught me to shoot well,
don't you agree?
How old are you?
Shall we say,
it has already struck midnight.
How much do you weigh?
- My word!
I don't mind scrawny women.
My first wife was nothing but bones.
I didn't know you were married.
- Yeah, she left me.
Rather like Jack Spratt and wife,
only in reverse.
The Spratts had
a very good arrangement, I must say.
Do you get paid for every conversion?
- No, it doesn't work like that.
- No fees.
And you haven't got your own money?
- Very little. - I thought that.
Are you scouting for a rich widow?
I guess you can't cook either.
'Course, that's just a guess.
It appears I don't measure up.
That's a mercy.
You got more backbone
than femaleness, that's a fact.
I would say that is a fact.
Out here in the territories,
we prize a dead shot
more than a lady's charms.
Then I've come to the right place.
So, men out West don't mind if
a woman out-shoots, out-smarts them?
If they're quiet about it.
We value a spirited woman
almost as much as a spirited horse.
Almost as much, eh?
Yes, Ma'am. Almost as much.
Not quite. But almost.
I don't think I can make it.
Leave him. We ain't got time for
diggin'. Let the buzzards have him.
Marshal Cogburn, I'm curious.
What is it that you're doing?
I'm busy tryin' to follow
Uncle Sam's regulations.
That gentleman'll have his fee sheets
just and correct, or he won't pay.
You're recording expenditures?
Somethin' like that. Without a deputy
to help, it's the Devil's own work.
Without any schoolin', you're up
against it in this country, Sister.
Perhaps I can help you.
- Well, I'd be obliged.
Now, these forms are ruled
with places for entries.
But your handwriting wanders
into places it should not go.
I'll rub out your chicken tracks
and work them over.
What's this entry? "Important words
with blue, dollars."
That's the soldier boy
that tipped me on Hawk and his gang.
And he charged his government
for the information?
Not exactly. I can't remember
the details of every transaction.
"Travel rations for Miss Goodnight
and Indian boy, Wolf, dollars."
But we brought our own food.
They don't know that.
- They may be smarter than you think.
From now on, you must
have approximate dates...
Alcohol on an empty stomach
kills more men than outlaws' bullets.
You don't say.
My stomach ain't empty.
It's full of corndodgers.
Balls of hot water cornbread,
made by Chen Lee, my friend.
Must be near in there.
- Why are they called corndodgers?
Dodgin' corn whiskey
in my innards, I guess.
You'd be better off dodging it too.
A drinking man is half a man.
You cannot give weight
to the words of a drunkard.
Don't tell me you stand in judgment
of a man who pulls the cork sometimes?
I do. It's a weakness
that indicates a lack of character.
You know more about the Lord
and His Good Book than about men.
My good fortune. I know enough
about men to steer clear of them.
I had no hankerin' to have
one of my own.
And no desire to produce more.
- She's frightening.
I got me a pepperbox here.
This thing shoots times,
sometimes all at once.
It is called a Lady's Companion.
That's what it'll be when I'm gone.
In Fort Smith, there is
a sportin' lady named Big Faye.
She was shot twice with this thing,
but she dressed out at
so none of the bullets
found their way to the vitals.
But against ordinary people it gives
good service. Protect Sister with it.
Thank you, sir.
I shall guard Miss Eula with my life.
It'll likely be the other way around.
But you take good care of her.
She is somethin'.
You wait here for Dakota.
- I could use a drink myself.
I only drink with friends.
You're hitting more than missing.
Them I Ain't hittin',
I ain't aimin' at.
If you're not careful, Hawk's men
will hear and be looking for you.
If they ain't careful,
they'll find me.
chuck up two of them things.
Your equitation teacher do that?
Marshal Cogburn, we're ready to go.
in a meadow is not taking us anywhere.
And my father's murderers ride free.
I was just celebratin' a little.
Bein' alive, Sister.
You're shooting your own food.
Whiskey is making you silly.
Why do people wish to be silly?
Why do people wish to be sober?
Life ain't a easy game. Won't hurt
to make a fool of yourself sometimes.
But not more often than not.
you're in a sorry state.
You're unsteady, untidy,
rank with the sweat and spirits.
Did you forget cleanliness
and abstinence are next to Godliness?
No, I ain't forgotten
a woman's naggin' and schemin'.
You figure you can take
my bottle and give me soap.
Give me a Bible for my gun.
Well, it ain't gonna work.
I am what I am. That's what I am.
I'll tell him.
You made good time. Where's the wagon?
That's why we came so soon.
We lost the wagon.
A posse of Marshals ambushed us.
They got Nose and Emmett.
You'd run from a jackrabbit.
Rooster Cogburn ain't no jackrabbit.
Cogburn aced ya?
You'll never take him, Hawk.
Yeah. I rode scout for him years.
And I know.
You take my money,
and you wear my brand.
Get your butts in the saddle.
We'll make camp early.
This is a likely spot.
Is it safe to stop overnight, sir?
We got to rest the horses.
Anyway, I ain't worried
about them roadrunners.
They'll be in Goldstrike
lickin' their wounds,
consortin' with lewd women.
They'll start after us tomorrow.
Boy, am I thirsty.
I'm gonna fetch some water.
Washing water I'm a stranger to,
and will leave you two to draw.
Marshal Cogburn, I'm sorry
if I offended you with my remarks
regarding your personal habits.
I didn't realize
you were such a sensitive nature.
My hide is tougher than boot leather.
But no man likes to be called
high-smellin' and low-down.
Ayah, true. But unpleasant things
are best said right out.
A sharp knife
cuts quickest and hurts least.
And aught to be left in the scabbard.
You're a flash of lightning, Marshal.
- No. I just follow the thunder.
Well, I'll follow my own advice
and retire to the stream
to perform my ablution.
Be careful movin' out there.
Everything that grows
in this country'll either
bite, stab or stick you.
Will she be alright?
Any varmint that crosses
her path has met it's match.
You, too, Marshal?
She'll never get the best of me.
You can bet on that,
Do Indian women
want to change a man too?
Yes. Miss Goodnight would be
regarded as highly as a brave warrior.
No man wants to put his boots
under a warrior's bed.
I heard some
flappin' noise back in them trees.
Soon as we get camp set up,
let's go huntin'. Get us a turkey.
Surprise Miss Eula with a good meal.
I would like that very much, sir.
Here's where they waylaid us, Hawk.
There was Marshals all around.
They can't be far.
That wagon's too heavy to move fast.
And too risky to move by night.
Breed. How many?
Tracks are hard to read.
Sure as Hell ain't no posse.
What? Hear that, you stupid bastards?
He tricked you.
You listen to me, all of you.
I ain't goin' away without the nitro.
I'll kill Rooster for it,
and I'll kill each one of you,
you show yellow again.
Here, drink yourself some guts.
Hello. The camp.
We must've hiked miles tryin'
to get a shot at a turk... turkey.
pulls to the left as it fires,
and the site is off a little.
But it's a beauty.
Son, we been outclassed.
- We got a mixed bag, owl and 'possum.
Put them in the pot.
We'll have wilderness stew.
You shot 'em, skin 'em.
Did you ever come up against
Jesse James or Billy the Kid?
Naw, I never ran into them fellows.
Did I ever tell how Lucky Ned Pepper
and his gang chased me?
No. I'd like to hear about it.
- Ayah. Tell us.
That was somethin'.
They chased me till I got tired of it,
then I just whirled my horse, Bo,
around, took the reins in my teeth
and rid right at them villains.
I was shootin' my pistol with one hand
and my Winchester with the other.
Never took aim.
Just snap-shot and got 'em all.
Marshal, are you sure you're not
stretching the blanket a bit?
I was thinkin' you'd figure that way.
So I told it gospel.
Proof is, I'm here, their dead.
One sad thing that day.
Lost old Bo.
Marshal, would you like more to eat?
Naw, I don't think so.
I'm full, but one thing I could stand:
I'd pay dollars
for a pickled buffalo tongue.
I'd have thought you'd had
enough pickled tongue for one day.
No. But I've had enough tongue
that's barbed and indigestible.
I know. It often is.
Well, Sister, how do you stand
on the sin of tobacco?
Well, I know of no passage
to prove it,
but I'm certain
that the Good Lord smokes fine cigars.
Marshal, is your eye bothering you?
I could sooth it with a poultice.
No, thanks, Ma'am. It's past help.
- Was it a hunting accident, Marshal?
You might say that. Huntin' Yankees.
I lost it in the war, riding with
Bill Anderson and Captain Quantrill.
Times have sure changed.
Now I'm workin' for a damned Yankee.
But you're still hunting, sir.
I guess I like Marshalin' better'n
anything I've done since the war.
I like buffalo huntin',
but them big shaggies is almost gone.
I was skinnin' buffalo
at Yellow Horse Creek, Texas.
Pay was great, but I couldn't
stand that open country.
I'll bet there weren't
trees between there and Canada.
I love the freedom of the open
prairies. You love your freedom too.
Yeah, yeah. I went off it once.
But my wife and l
are travelin' different roads now.
She didn't like my friends,
she didn't like me when I was myself.
My drinkin' picked up,
she got a bellyful of it and left.
Now I'm livin' happily
with my cat, General Sterling Price,
and my friend Chen Lee,
the Chinaman. They let a man be.
Be what, Marshal?
Be his self. He don't have to change.
But change is progress. You're not
too old to change. Life is a school.
Well, teacher, don't start
pressin' your dress for my graduation.
'Cause I intend to stay
in my own low class, indefinitely.
May I have more 'possum stew?
- Opossum. An American marsupial.
Wolf, give me
some of that owl meat.
It might make me smart.
A wise old owl sat on an oak,
the more he heard, the less he spoke.
The less he spoke, the more he heard.
Now, wasn't that a wise old bird.
I guess there's
a lesson in that for me. For us both.
How many miles did we
ride today? - About .
It feels like more than that.
- Wait a minute. Maybe I can help.
That feels good.
I'll bet your backside
hurts worse than anything.
we can't do anything about that.
Well, I reckon not.
The layin' on of the hands.
How do you happen to know that?
What I know
might surprise you, Sister.
Nothing about you would surprise me.
Just a minute, Sister,
I'll put my lariat around your bed,
then the night crawlers
and snakes will respect it.
Is it true,
that they won't crawl over a rope?
I ain't gonna say it's true
or it ain't true. But it's comfortin'.
Thank you, Reuben.
The Good Book says, "Let not the sun
go down on thy wrath."
I'm glad it didn't.
- Wolf, give me a hand.
- Goodnight, Wolf.
This Gatling gun is a little heavy.
Set this up for your protection,
in case them cut-throats do come.
We'll still have an advantage.
A little chilly. I guess
we'd better stand guard tonight
over there across the creek.
You take the first watch,
and I'll spell you around midnight.
You got the pepperbox?
- Right here.
Don't use it unless you have to.
Any trouble, give that coyote howl
and high-tail it back here to camp.
That big flat rock on the side
is a good place for a look-out.
Has there ever been an Indian Marshal?
Not that I heard tell of.
- That's what I'd like to be.
A man like you.
You're not aimin'
your sites very high, son.
But if you'd like to follow in
my tracks, I'd be proud to help you.
Thank you, sir.
- Goodnight, sir.
Have you seen an enlarged picture
of a drunkard's liver?
Even in their sleep?
Goodnight, Miss Goodnight.
Where are ya, Wolf?
I got him, Rooster.
That you, Hawk?
- You know it is.
You're interested in the wagon?
- You let that boy go.
I will let him go,
when you give me back that wagon.
Breed, you there?
- I'm here, Rooster.
You alright? - I'm alright.
You're the one with a little trouble.
I want that wagon.
You ain't goin' nowhere with it.
Give it to me, or the Indian boy dies.
Then I'll blow up this wagon.
And hunt down every one of you
and cut you throat to throat.
Alright, I'll trade
that damn wagon for the boy,
if he ain't harmed.
show 'em the bait.
When they lower their guns,
rush 'em. Shoot to kill.
Alright, bring him across.
We'll stand aside.
Marshal, it's a trick.
They're gonna kill you.
Hold your fire.
Nice work, boy.
Here, Sister, give Wolf the rifle.
You may have the boy now, but
nobody moves till we get what's ours.
I got a pretty good position here,
and some mean deputies.
You're a liar, Rooster.
You ain't got no posse.
Well, I got a Gatling gun.
And I got it set up.
You've got minutes to run, or I'll
fill you full of holes like a sieve.
You ain't got
the know-how to use that gun.
Deputy, show 'em.
Ain't that the way it works, Hawk?
Now, high-tail it before I forget
my promise to bring you in alive.
That was good, Rooster.
But the odds will change at sun-up.
Spread out. When he moves it
in the morning, we'll make our play.
Wolf, did you see their horses?
- Yes, sir, up there.
Can you get back up there
and spook 'em? - I can, sir. - Good.
You're risking the boy's life.
I'm countin' on your relationship
with the Lord. Can you hitch a team?
Yes, I can.
I'll get there attention over there.
Hitch the team and saddle the horses.
Hawk, you there?
- Ready to deal, Rooster?
I'll give you a last chance
to give yourself up.
Wait till daylight.
We'll see who's ready to give up.
I'll get you a fair trial
and a fine hanging.
Might even get you
life at the Federal House in Detroit.
They'll teach you to read and write.
'Course the rest ain't so good.
Get the horses.
Good work, Wolf.
You bought us some time.
Wolf, gimme a hand.
You folks runnin' from somethin'
or to somethin'? - Both.
Are you goin' across?
- We aim to use your raft.
cents for a horse and rider, wagon
dollar, cents for extra weight.
Show of money before passage.
I'm Rooster J. Cogburn,
The men I'm stalking are hot
on my tail and I'm gonna need help.
Give this woman and boy sanctuary.
If I wanted women and children
I'd have my own.
They ain't nothin' but trouble.
Don't saddle me with your discards.
You ain't very hospitable.
I ain't got an ounce of goodwill.
I hate everybody.
I'm a cantankerous old man
and I know it.
I like myself better'n anyone else.
That's why I took this job.
Watch that nitro.
Tell me if you want to cross.
I can't stay out in this heat.
The sun is fryin' my brains.
I can only get this stuff
down to Sulfur Bottom by river.
What do I do with you two?
Too risky to leave you here.
Maybe I can land you
someplace before the shootin' starts.
- Are you goin' across?
We're goin' down river.
We're loanin' the raft.
That ain't loanin', that's stealin'.
Am I gonna have trouble? - Not a bit,
as long as you got that.
I'm securin' this for the law.
I ain't got much use for the law.
It ain't got use for me, neither.
Is there a law says you can't help us?
- Anything to get you out of here.
There you are.
Do you know anything about rafts?
There's rough water down river.
I can ride. Can't be much different.
You ain't no sailor. I can see that.
Water is like a woman:
sly and fickle.
You gotta watch it every minute.
You a sailor? - I was once.
Shanghai McCoy's my name.
Been around the Horn,
sailed the seas,
seen everything, done everything,
that's how I know people are rotten.
I've seen 'em all.
You're wrong, old man.
We're made in God's image,
and goodness is in us. Even in you.
I never took you for a Bible-thumper.
Hold it. She is what she is
'cause she wants to be.
That's the way you take her. Like me.
You're wastin' your time preachin'.
You too, Sister.
I'm a ship that can't be salvaged.
- "With God, all things are possible."
You're shippin' out
a strange crew, captain.
I'll match their mettle against most.
- I'm glad it's your ship, not mine.
Women can no more keep their mouths
shut than a yellow-tailed catfish.
Got to agree with you there.
We'll ride ahead
and take 'em at the narrows. Breed.
You and Luke river-trail 'em.
Join us at the narrows,
just ahead of 'em.
Hold your course.
Keep the rudder amidships
when you hit that white water.
shot them rapids on a raft before.
You just take care of my horses,
Commodore. I'll be back for 'em.
Don't crack up my vessel
on them rocks, you hear me?
It's so lovely here.
I wish we could
sail right on down to the sea.
Right now, Webber Falls
would be more to my liking.
We'll get there tomorrow.
With the Good Lord's help.
Would you really have killed
those men with the Gatling gun?
They believed I would. In a pinch
a convincin' lie's as good as a posse.
Tell me more about the outlaws
and how you bested them.
If you gentlemen will excuse me,
I'll go have a little sleep.
I've had enough of your
daring-do for one day.
You ever heard of Abilene Town?
I was there lookin' for
a bunco-steerer named -Jewel Slim.
That Abilene is the worst place
I have ever saw.
It is a sink of crime.
I was standin' on Horse Thief Corner
when Prairie Rose came down the street
with nothin' on but her six-guns.
She was stark naked
and painted... - Wolf!
Stop poling and get some rest.
You've got to spell Marshal Cogburn
tonight. - Yes, Ma'am.
What color was she painted, Reuben?
Breed, ain't no love lost
between you and Hawk, or him and me.
If you was willing
to quit him now and join up with me.
I think we could take the raft
and be rich men instead of dead ones.
What's your plan?
Come on, I'll show you.
We lay the rope under the water,
so they don't see it.
When they get up to it,
it'll stretch tight and stop 'em.
he'll want to cut the rope,
or stretch it up
and float the raft underneath.
That's when I get a good shot at him,
without a chance of blowing the nitro.
You kill the other two.
We'll land the cargo later.
What makes you think this will work?
- It'll work, partner.
Take this tiller, Wolf.
What's holdin' us up?
Rooster, cut it loose.
- Yeah. Saved my life once.
Now we're even.
- Grateful to you.
Hawk's waitin' for you down river.
Can't help you there.
Well, we'll be ready for him.
It's me, Hawk.
What the Hell you doin' here?
Dead. We shot it out with Rooster.
I said track him, not take him.
What happened? - Tried to stop
the raft with a rope across the river.
Rooster cut it and got away.
We gun-fought him, but...
he's just too good for us.
Let me see your gun.
You don't want my gun.
Oh, yes I do.
Breed here, he gun-fought
old Rooster with just one bullet.
You're a liar, Breed.
I owed him one.
I wish this thing had
a little more giddy-up to it.
I picked blackberries, Reuben.
Would you like some?
No, not for me. I have to be careful.
I can't just eat anything. Get colic.
'Course, my mouth is slickerin'
for one thing:
Chen Lee's corn bread, fried
in a big ladle of coon meat grease.
Yes. Well, when we get to Fort Smith,
I'd like to get Mr. Lee's recipe.
Will we get back, Reuben?
The odds are the same.
They ain't in our favor.
When you drop us off
at Webber's Falls, and go after them,
you will be careful, won't you?
Wolf and I care about you, very much.
I don't know much about thoroughbreds,
horses or women.
Them that I did know,
I never liked.
They're too nervous and spooky.
They scare me.
one high-bred filly that don't.
I don't know what you're talkin' about
half the time, but that don't matter.
Bein' around you pleases me.
Those are the nicest words
ever said to me. Thank you, Reuben.
I'll spell ya.
We got you now, Rooster.
Throw your guns in the water,
pull ashore, keep your hands high.
And don't try nothin', or you're dead.
That's a rattlesnake's warnin', Hawk.
Your schemin' ain't gonna help now.
Don't you rely on it,
Hawk. Don't rely on it.
That'll keep their heads down.
Don't hit the nitro.
Shoot wide. Force 'em into the bank.
Them rapids'll get him now.
No. I will.
The Lord is with us.
So's that current.
If He owes you any favors,
now's the time to collect.
Get out of the way, Wolf.
Alright, brace yourself.
God help us. - If He does,
I'll give up drinkin'.
It went over, we've lost the gun.
- What the Hell can I do about it?
Watch it there, Sister.
You alright, Sister?
- I don't know.
Am I alright?
How did we do it?
Your friend must've been on the job.
I guess he must've.
It's a showdown.
- We did the best we could.
Sister, I've finished every fight
We'll finish this one, maybe not
standing up, but we'll finish it.
Wolf, get those lines loose.
Have a care with that nitro.
Easy does it.
Ease them boxes into the water.
Remember, it's nitroglycerin.
They never made it, Hawk.
Yeah, but the nitro did.
Hold your fire
Marshal Cogburn is injured
Take your dynamite,
but give us safe passage.
Sure, lady, we'll do that.
We'll just take our load,
then we'll send you and your hero on.
Straight to Hell. Come on.
Payday. Come and get it, boys.
Well, we won the battle,
but I lost my job.
You see, Judge, the Lord
could have struck down the Midianites
and Amalekites easily.
But He didn't do that.
He raised up Gideon to smite them.
An ordinary man like the Marshal.
It's in the Book of Judges, Judge.
- I know where it is, Madam.
Very ingenious defense.
It takes one's breath away.
But I do not believe the Lord has
raised up Gideon at Fort Smith. No.
If he's raised up anything,
I fear it's Rooster.
A willful, strutting old bird,
who paid no attention to the US law.
But he did. I killed that
criminal trash. Not Marshal Cogburn.
He wanted him hung, according to law,
but I couldn't do that. - Silence.
My father's honor was at stake.
Will you take Reuben's word, or mine?
Well, in view of my past experience,
with Reuben, I'll take yours.
Get back on the rails.
This man may pull a cork now and then,
but he's as straight as a string.
He's the best Marshal you have,
worth more than you pay. - Reuben.
You are reinstated, and this court
is recessed and dismissed.
One thing I'd like to get straight.
We both know
the Lord brands lyin' a sin.
Do you think He'll smile on you
after them whoppers you told?
"And if thy words stray from truth
for the good of God's own,
if thy intent be pure,
thou shalt not be judged sinful."
What book? What chapter?
I confess, Reuben, it is my invention.
I just made it up.
Hallelujah and jubilee!
That is one quotation I'll remember.
And will you remember us, too?
Longer than that quotation, Miss Eula.
We found families
who will homestead at Fort Ruby
and help us re-settle it.
Will you see us off at Texas Road?
We join the wagon train there.
I will consider it a privilege, Ma'am.
this is where our trails part.
Maybe they'll cross again.
That's something I'd like to drink to.
After that vow you took on the river?
- "When a soul needs reviving,
thou shalt reach for help."
Book and chapter?
- Rooster Cogburn, .
Will you join me, Ma'am?
Maybe I will try just a little sip.
Watch your drinkin', Ma'am.
If you ever need
of a one-eyed peace officer.
Reuben, I have to say it:
living with you has been an adventure
any woman would relish for all time.
I look at you, with your
burnt-out face, your big belly,
your bear-like paws
and shining eyes.
You're a credit to the male sex
and I'm proud you're my friend.
Damned if she didn't get
the last word in again. Well...