7 Men from Now (1956) Script

Don't mean to be busting in on you... but I couldn't help seeing your fire from the ridge.

What are you... You heard the gent.

He just stopped by to get in out of the rain.

Ain't that right? That's right.

Come on in.

Thanks.

I'd be obliged for a cup of that coffee.

Help yourself. Thanks.

It's a mighty wet night for a man to be out.

Sure is.

You must have rode a long way.

I walked.

Ain't you got no horse?

Did have.

Chiricahua jumped me. About 10 miles back.

They stole him? They ate him.

Don't I know you from somewhere, mister?

Ever been in Silver Springs?

Can't say as I have.

I come from there.

I hear there was a killing in Silver.

Yeah, I heard.

The rain's slacking off, Clint. We better get moving before...

What's your hurry?

No close town around.

That killing... they ever catch up to them fellows that done it?

Two of them.


Giddap.

Here.

Good morning. Yes, isn't it?

Looks like you could use a little help. A lot of help, mister.

These poor animals are about worn out. Not to mention us.

Oh, the name's Greer, John Greer. And this is Annie, my wife.

Ma'am.

Well, think we can get it out, Mister... Stride, Ben Stride.

Sun's going to dry this mud before long.

And, is that good?

Like as not, it'll hard up like a rock. I see.

Look, Mr. Stride, all I own is in this wagon.

I can't say that I'd like to make this mudhole my home.

I sure would appreciate it if you'd get up there and make these horses pull.

Get up there yourself.


Anytime you're ready, Mr. Greer.

Giddap! Giddap, there!

Giddap, there. Come on, giddap!

Giddap! Giddap, there!


Well, I'd say that's the way to get a wagon out of the mud.

I'd get to water as soon as I could and wash your animals down... before that mud cakes on them.

I'll do that, Mr. Stride.

I can't thank you enough. Can we, Annie?

Glad to be of help.

Good day.

Oh, Mr. Stride?

I don't know exactly how to say this, but... well, if there's another mudhole in Arizona, we'll get stuck in it, and...

Well, I'd feel a whole lot better if you'd ride along with us.

I'm headed south.

Well, so are we. Looks like we got company, Annie.


Mr. Stride. Ma'am.

I want you to know how much we appreciate this... your riding with us. Glad to be of help, if I can.

Oh, you can!

That isn't the first trouble we've had.

We've had broken wheels, broken spokes, broken hubs, and...

Goodness knows what would have happened if you hadn't come along.

We're from the East, you know.

I figured you were.

I just wanted to let you know how much we appreciate this... your riding along with us.

Well, as I was saying...

I'll never forget the look in Annie's eyes when I told her what I wanted to do.

I guess she thought I was crazy.

"You can't talk your way from Kansas City to California", she said.

And the most outdoors I've ever seen was our own backyard.

She didn't try to stop me. Nope. Not Annie.

It sure is wild country. Well, I like wild things.

I guess that's why I've never been able to settle down to one job.

It'll be different this time, though... if we ever make it.

I never knew any place could be so far.

Yeah, they say there's no end to what a good salesman can make out there.

What with the shipping trade and all.

Did you ever hear that, Mr. Stride?

Yes. Yes, I have.

Better wash his withers down again.

They go raw easy with mud on them. You're the boss.

Of course, Annie was right about my not being able to talk my way... across the country.

Our money ran dry two weeks ago.

I've had to take odd jobs along the way to stake us.

But we'll make it. California, that's where we're going.

Figure you'll get there heading south?

I plan to swing west to get at Flora Vista.

That way I can follow the Sonora borderline all the way in.

At least, that's what a fellow told me back in Silver Springs.

There. That clean enough, Mr. Stride?

Mr. Stride, that clean enough?

Oh, yeah. Yeah, that's fine. Good.

Come on, boy.

Annie. Better hurry up. Time we were moving.

Come on, boy.


I think we can make it here.


They're headed for Flora Vista, all right.


Got a gun, Greer? Yes.

Get it.


Afternoon, gentlemen. Ma'am. Afternoon.

I'm Lt. Collins of the Second Squadron of the Fifth.

What can we do for you, Lieutenant?

That depends. On what?

We've been dispatched from Fort Crittenden... to make a wide sweep south... in an attempt to contact any and all Chiricahua in the area.

Reports indicate they may be massing along the border.

Can't be more than 50 of them left in the whole territory.

According to our scouts, there's well over 100.

That including the squaws, Lieutenant?

I take it you don't think the Indians are dangerous.

They're worse than that. They're hungry.

Nothing as deadly as a half-starved Chiricahua.

Well, then, we agree.

Do we?

We're heading for Flora Vista, Lieutenant.

Do you think we can make it without running into trouble?

Well, that, I can't say.

However, I strongly recommend that you swing this wagon around... and head on back the way you came.

Unfortunately, the military has no jurisdiction over civilians.

But if you have any regard for the safety of the lady...

I'd think twice before continuing on south.

Good day, ma'am, sir.

Forward, ho.

Seems like it gets harder and harder to get to California.

Seems that way.

You're going on south, aren't you, Mr. Stride?

Far as I can.

Well, why can't we stick together?

I realize there's a risk involved, but... Look, Mr. Greer.

You can swing west here as well as at the border.

A day will put you on the side of the Gila River.

All you have to do then is keep it to your right and follow it on in.

Shouldn't ought to take you more than four days out of your way.

I've been obliged to know you.

Stride...

I'm not going to head west and I'm not turning back.

It's your wagon.

Come on, boy. Can't let them go alone.

Let's go.


Kind of a lonesome spot for a ranch, isn't it, Mr. Stride?

It's a relay station for the Overland Line.

No use sitting here, let's get... Hold it!

Let the team stand. I'll go have a look.


Old-timer?

Me?

Guess it's gotta be, don't it. Nobody else here.

Where are they? It's hard to say.

Headed up towards the north, maybe.

Then again, they might even have turned west.

But, like I say... it's hard to say.

What run them off? Chiricahua.

Soldier boys come riding through three days ago.

Claimed the Injuns was fixin' to kick up their heels.

Then we seen war fire in them hills to the south.

So they all just up and took off like a scalded dog.

Guess they figured jobs is easier to come by than hair.

I'm the only one stayed behind.

Injuns don't bother with me.

I ain't worth too awful much.

You say they pulled out about three days ago?

Yeah. Bartender, he left, too.

Well, I'll be seeing you. We gotta be moving.

You ought to do the same, mister.

Unless you hanker for a haircut from a Chiricahua barber.

Come on, Claire.

Well, adiós.

That's Spanish.

Hello, Stride.

I've been looking to find you, Masters.

I figured you would be.

Soon as I heard what happened in Silver, I figured you would.

Ain't that right, Clete? Yep.

I half thought you might know something... about what happened in Silver.

Maybe.

If you're thinking I roll with them gents, you dead wrong.

I helped bury a few men in my time but I ain't never sunk that low.

I hope not, Masters.

I'd hate to have to kill you. I'd hate to have you try.

Everything all right, Mr. Stride? We'll be staying here for the night.

I'll see to watering the stock and bedding them down.

Get your possibles and move inside. A hot meal will do us all good.

Can I give you a hand? Just do like I tell you.

I wonder what's the matter with him.

Sheriff's got things on his mind.

Ain't that right, Clete? Yep.

Ma'am.

Sheriff.

I'll tell you, this has got to be cooking.

Real cooking.

Ain't that right, Clete?

I said, "Ain't that right?"

Yeah, sure. That's right.

Have to excuse Clete, here, ma'am. He's kind of short on manners.

More coffee? Well, yes, ma'am.

Don't mind if I do. Don't mind at all.

More coffee, John?

John?

More coffee?

No, thanks, Annie.

You say you're from Silver Springs, Mr. Masters.

Mostly. He was born there.

Who said? You said!

I was young when I come there, Clete, but I wasn't born there.

My folks had me in a shack up in Lerno, ma'am.

They moved to Silver the summer I was first able to walk.

And Mr. Stride, is he from Silver, too?

The sheriff, ma'am?

Yes, ma'am. He was the law there for 12 years.

Was?

Yeah, they held an election back last fall. Sheriff, he run... but he wasn't much at kissing babies.

When they come to counting up... he didn't have nothing but a spot on his shirt where the badge used to hang.

Of course, that won't make no never mind... when he catches up to them that done it.

The killing back in Silver.

Didn't he tell you? No.

I reckon he wouldn't, at that.

You say there was a killing, Mr. Masters?

Silver express office was held up.

Fargo box was stole. Lot of shooting.

Somebody was bound to get hurt.

Somebody was bound to get hurt.

Just too bad it had to be her.

Her?

Yeah, they killed her. The Sheriff's wife.

Coffee? Thank you.

Is that a coyote?

I hope so.

Mr. Masters told us about...

Well, he told us about your wife.

Would you like to talk about her?

I know it's none of my business... but it might make it easier.

You're right, Mrs. Greer. It's none of your business... and it won't make it any easier.

Good night.

Mrs. Greer?

There's one thing Masters in there didn't tell you.

The reason my wife is dead.

Six months ago...

I lost my job as the Sheriff of Silver Springs.

Three of those months, I tried to get work.

Work that was fitting an ex-sheriff, but I didn't find any.

The town allowed as I could be the Deputy... but my pride wouldn't let me, so my wife had to take a job.

A clerk, checking freight for Fargo.

She was working at that job the night she was killed.

Good night, Mrs. Greer.

Mighty fancy lady, that Mrs. Greer.

Think they'd get tired of crawling around out there playing coyote.

Sheriff... folks back in Silver said you high-ended it out of town... without knowing how much them gents rode off with.

$20.000 in gold.

Fargo box near full of the stuff.

Of course, I know that ain't the reason you're riding them down, but...

Well, that's sort of why I'm gonna tag along with you.

You see, me and Clete figure that when they left Silver they scattered.

Seven of them.

Two fresh-dug holes where your tracks begin.

That leaves five still alive.

And one of them's got that strongbox.

So?

So.

If they're headed for Flora Vista...

That means they're fixing to trade the gold across the border... and ride away rich.

That is... unless, of course, you catch up to them.

And if I do?

Then, all that stands between me and $20.000... is you.

Good night, Sheriff.

Masters.

Yeah?

You know who they are, don't you?

Maybe.

One thing for sure, though.

They know you.

You see, that's the trouble with being a sheriff.

The only time you get to know a man by his face... is when you shut a cell door on it... like you did mine.

More coffee? No, thanks, Mrs. Greer.

More coffee, John? No, thanks, Annie.

Hold it!


That was using your head, Stride.

I think we could have handled them, though.

I was just going for my rifle. I was scared.

We all were scared.

We better get moving. That horse isn't going to hold them off long.


It just don't seem right to me. What don't?

Why a full woman like that would settle for half a man.

Why don't you ask her why?

Maybe I will, Clete. Maybe I will.


You stay with the wagon, Clete.


I'll get your horse.


He was fixing to cut you down.

You know him?

No. He sure knew you...

Sheriff.

Mrs. Greer...

I suppose she want to read over this gent.

All she said was to see he's covered in a proper grave.

It's a waste of time, anyhow.

If a man ain't ready when he gets this far... a couple of holies said over his grave ain't gonna help him none.

Anyhow, he ain't dug too deep.

Clete. Yep?

How old do you figure she is? Who?

Annie Greer.

Now, how would I know?

Twenty-five, twenty-six, would you say?

Want me to bury your boots, too?

She's a real looker, ain't she?

She ain't ugly.

A man could grow mighty fond of a woman like that.

Looks like one already has.

Now, what would ever make you say a thing like that, Clete?


That should be enough.

Here, let me do this. Thank you.

Most men object to doing a woman's work.

I hardly blame them, though.

They're right about our work never being done.

Sure don't look like a man with killing on his mind.

Say, you're quite a hand at this.

A woman would be fortunate to have you around.

Would she, ma'am?

You shouldn't blame yourself for what happened.

A man ought to be able to take care of his woman.

Like my man?

Do you think I love him any less because of the way he is?

Yes, ma'am.

You're making a big mistake, Mrs. Greer.

Them clothes of yours. They'll never dry.

Storm's coming.


Hey, wake up.

Come on, take over. I'm gonna go get me a cup of coffee.

Well, right cozy in here, ain't it?

Come on in. Thanks.

Coffee?

Don't mind if I do.

I'm afraid it's not as hot as it could be.

Just so as it's black.

Storm seems to be letting up some. Yes, ma'am.

Stars'll be showing, time it's your turn to take the guard.

Mr. Masters, you know this part of the country.

Every rock.

Well, how far would you say we are from Flora Vista?

With an early start come morning... you should be able to noon there with near no trouble at all.

Thank you.

Sure is good coffee, ma'am.

Mr. Greer... how come you ever to marry such a handsome woman?

Well, I...

We fell in love, Mr. Masters.

Love?

That's a mighty fancy word.

That's the trouble with the likes of you and me, Sheriff.

We never take time out for the fancy things in life.

We leave that to the fellows that run sort of gentle, soft.

More coffee?

Been that way ever since ever, I guess.

Of course, that ain't saying that women don't warm up to the likes of us.

Why, no, sir.

Why, I knew me a little old gal one time, looked a whole lot like you, Mrs. Greer.

She'd been married maybe five, six years.

Husband, he kind of short on spine.

And one day, along come this big, good-looking gent... started warming up to her.

First thing you know, why, this little old gal, she just up and...

Drink your coffee, Masters.

Ain't you interested in what she up and did, Sheriff?

You... you say she looked like me?

Not near as pretty, ma'am.

Her eyes, they didn't show a deep blue like yours.

Can't recollect her hair too well... but couldn't have been near as soft or as black as yours.

And the way she walked... nothing like you.

You move like you're all over alive.

And you say words quiet, soft.

Kind of making a man wish that you was talking to him and nobody else.

Yeah, she looked a lot like you, ma'am. But not near as pretty.

Well, I guess it's about time we were turning in.

Well, don't you want to hear the rest of the story, Mr. Greer?

You might could learn something from it.

I don't understand.

Don't you?

He said he didn't.

You know what, Sheriff? I just happened to think of something.

Danged if you don't remind me... of that big, good-looking gent I was talking about.

You know, the one that run off with the other fellow's woman?

Seems that ain't nobody don't remind you of somebody tonight, Masters.

Seems that way, don't it?

Sure you don't wanna hear the rest of the story?

Suit yourself.

Much obliged for the coffee, ma'am. Good night.

Good night, Sheriff.

Masters.

Yeah? Leave him alone.

I don't know what you're talking about. Just do as I tell you.

Maybe you better mind your own business.

Unless, of course, Mrs. Greer in there is your business.

Good night, Sheriff.

I said, good night.


Get up.

It might be better all around if you'd move along, Masters.

Maybe you're right.

Let's saddle up, Clete.

Here... you'll be needing that.

Come on down. I'll relieve you at midnight.


Mr. Stride?

Yes, ma'am?

Those...

Those men you're after... they'll be waiting for you in Flora Vista, won't they?

That depends.

Please, be careful.

Yes, ma'am. I plan to.

Good night.

Good night, Mrs. Greer.


Pour us a drink, Clete.


Where is everybody?

Hello, Masters.

Why, hello, Bodeen.

I kind of figured I'd find you around here.

Clete, this is Payte Bodeen from Silver Springs.

Clete.

You're kind of a long way from home, ain't you?

No more than you.

I can go back.

Ladies.

This here is going to be a private conversation, Nelly.

Well, sure, Payte. Sure.

You boys join me in a drink?

That's what we've come for.

Cheers.

Strange, ain't it?

Running onto each other like this.

Is it? Yeah.

Man don't ride south in this country unless he got a reason.

You got a reason, Masters? What do you think?

I hear they had themselves a holdup back in Silver.

Yeah, we heard that.

It'll go hard with them that done it, if they catch up to them.

Yeah, it sure will.

Payte!

Howdy, Payte.

Everything all right?

Everything's just fine.

Have a drink. Can use it.

Been running from Chiricahua for two days.

Lucky to be here at all.

You boys waiting for somebody?

They ain't coming.

Ground's gonna be full of men, time Stride gets through.

Stride?

Since when's he toting a badge again?

He ain't. Oh, didn't you know? It was his wife they killed... in that express office back in Silver.

Much obliged for the drink. Come on, Clete.

Masters. Yeah?

Stride turned a key on you once, didn't he?

Twice.

Man put me in jail...

I'd get even with him, if I could.

I don't follow you.

Them holdup fellows. They got off with $20.000 in gold.

I heard.

So, it figures... if they knew where to find the gent that was after them, before he found them... they'd stand a whole lot better chance of getting to spend it.

If I was them...

I'd be willing to offer a fair amount for information like that.

When would a man get this fair amount... supposing of course, that you were them?

When the wagon gets here with the gold.

Wagon?

Fellow's bringing it in from Silver for us.

Name's Greer.

John Greer.

Well, Mr. Stride, good luck. Same to you.

And, thanks. Thanks a lot.

Mr. Stride?

I didn't want you to leave without your clean shirt.

I washed it for you. Thank you.

Will we be seeing you in Flora Vista? I'll be there.

I wish you'd let us go in with you. You know I can't do that.

They'll kill you, won't they? They'll try.

Then why... Look, Mrs. Greer...

I'm obliged for your concern.

You must have loved her very much.

She was a good woman. Yes, she'd have to be.


Look.

It's Stride's horse.


Annie!


How is he?

I don't know how he is. He is still unconscious.

Anything I can do? No.

Annie... we ought to take him on into Flora Vista.

There's bound to be a doctor there... We can't do that, John.

But he's liable to die. Well, don't you think I know that?

Annie, we're taking him on in.

You listen to me, John Greer.

If it wasn't for Stride, we'd still be hub-high in mud... twenty miles out of Silver.

He had reason to leave us, good reason... but he didn't, because he knew we needed him.

But, Annie, you've got to... Those men in Flora Vista... are waiting for him. Waiting to shoot him down.

You take Stride's horse in and bring a doctor back.

Annie.

Annie, I can't do that.

I've got to take the wagon in when I go. It's something I have to do.

I just have to.

When we came through Silver, remember I told you I got a job?

Well, I did, only...

Well, it wasn't a real job.

I guess I knew it was wrong all along, but...

Well, you know we needed the money.

They said I was to ask no questions, just do as they told me.

I swear, I didn't know it was going to turn out like this.

John, what are you trying to say?

Annie, come here.

This is what I'm trying to say.

$500 they said they'd give me. All I had to do was haul it.

I picked it up in the tool shed behind the express office.

No... They're waiting for me now... in the saloon in Flora Vista. I'm due there today.

That's why I couldn't turn back.

And I can't take Stride's horse in. Throw it down, Mr. Greer.

If I go in without this, they'll kill me.

Throw it down.

Mrs. Greer, get up in the seat.

Just south of that canyon wall... the trail swings west. Stay on it, you'll get to California.

What about you?

It's the gold they're after. If you don't show up... they'll be along to get me.

But you can't do this.

Only thing I can do.

I've thought about it, it's the only chance I've got... them coming to me.

Those men, Stride...

I didn't know what they'd done.

You have to believe that.

If I thought it any different, I'd have killed you.

Now, get her out of here.

Stride.


Annie, there's bound to be a sheriff in Flora Vista.

We can't leave him back there.


They should've been back by now, Payte.

Maybe we'd better... Shut up.

Been me, I'd never send just two men out.

Man like Stride's awful tough to kill.

You talk a lot, Masters.

Couldn't be I touched you where it hurt, could it, Payte?

Sometimes he gets awful touchy.

Say out in words what you're thinking, Masters.

Payte?

You wanna know what I'm thinking?

I think you sent them boys out on purpose not to come back.

You think I'd do a thing like that?

I know you would.

Then it figures I'd do the same to you... if I get the chance.

You got it.

Wagon's coming!


Hello, Greer!

We were beginning to think you weren't coming.

Why don't you pull around back here? We'll help you unload.

There's nothing to unload.

Where is it? Stride's got it.

He says if you want it, you'll have to come and get it.

You know where he is?

About a half-hour north in a deep canyon.

He's sitting there, waiting.

I know the place, Payte.

You wait here, Annie. John.


I suppose you'll figure as I owe you something, Greer.

No. But there's something I owe Stride.

Get out of my way, Bodeen.

Go around.


I was wrong, Clete. He wasn't half a man.

Come on.


There it is.

Stride!

This here is Payte Bodeen!

We come to get the box!

Well, let's go get... Hold it.

Think you can get a rope over it? You know I can.

I'll circle around. We'll come at it from both sides.


Hold it!


What happened up there? Payte Bodeen...

I killed him.

Why? Why not?

Clete? Dead.

Sure is a shame, me and you having to face it out this way.

You could have stayed behind a rock.

I never could enjoy spending this $20.000...

I'd done you that way, Sheriff.

I don't suppose there's any way of getting at this box... aside from going over you.

I didn't figure there was.

I sure would hate to have to do this... what with Annie Greer being how she is.

How is she?

A widow.

Her husband, he talked himself to death... in front of the Sheriff's office in Flora Vista.

A man can do that.

Yeah.

Anytime you're ready, Sheriff.


I think you've made a wise decision, Mrs. Greer.

I understand California is a mighty pretty place.

And you?

I'll be taking that job as deputy in Silver.

If there ever comes then, when you're anywhere near...

I'll allow as I'll be there.

I'll remember that.

Goodbye, Mrs. Greer. Goodbye.

Driver. Ma'am?

Take my baggage off the coach. Ain't you going with us?

Not for a while, anyway.