Plunder Road (1957) Script

7 minutes late.

Heavy on the foot, Frankie.

We didn't figure on any rain.

6 packages of gum.

That ought to be enough.

Why doesn't this stinking rain stop?

Maybe they forgot about this soup back here.

Frankie, slow it down...

If they ever hit a bump, we're all angels.

If the wires get wet, maybe it won't spark.

Boy, that little guy sure is scared.

Picked up two minutes.

It's going to work.

Honk at them.

Let's go!

Before we start congratulating ourselves, let's remember...

...we've still got 900 miles to go.

900 miles, through every cop between here and the coast...

...and you laugh it up like a couple of clowns.


We're coming into Montello.


Now leaving the fair city of Montello.

We've got 35 minutes to make Wendover.

Now let's go. We've got 4 hours.

Now, remember:

Stay on the main highway no matter what.

No shortcuts, no back roads.

Our best cover is to move right along with the rest of the traffic.

2TR-70, 2TR-70, come in.

Shut that thing off, will you?

Use that police wavelength only when you're absolutely in the clear.

Otherwise, keep your radios set at 1600.

We leave here at 30-minute intervals. Gas up at Baker, Alamo, and Redlands.

Stop to eat every 8 hours. Just sandwiches.

Change drivers every 4 hours.

And never go over 10 miles beyond the speed limit.

If the cops search your truck...

...keep talking to them.

It's 7:30.

Alright, let's go.

2TR-70, roger.

Over 100 miles out and not even a whisper yet.

That Eddie's a genius, huh?

That's a college education for you.

You know, it's his first job.

When Frankie told me, I thought he was nuts.

I wasn't hooking up with an amateur.

A job like that.

That's no amateur.

Too bad my wife couldn't hold out.

She waited for me for 23 years while I'm in and out of stir... it was a revolving door.

2 months ago, she dies.


I got a boy back east.

Nothing but the best for him from now on out.

He's going to the biggest and best college in Rio.


1-Sam-42 or 1-Sam-46, come in.

4-L-21, no want.

Let me tell you about Rio.

In the first place, there's over a million and a half people down there. you can get lost in a town that size, right?

Me and the kid'll take a boat, and by the time we get there...

...everything will have cooled off.

Then I'll get Harold...

...I'll get Harold one of those sports jobs.

They got a lot of beautiful streets down there. they don't use cement on the sidewalks.

They got millions of little squares, all painted different colors, and...

They call them, uh, mosaics. Yeah, that's it.

And they've got a lot of hills, where you can buy a house...

...and nobody knows anything about it.

And every day you can drive down to the bay...

...and the beach of Copaca-- Copacabana.

They've got the whitest sands in the world there.

White sea...plenty of room to move around.

That's the place, I'm telling you.

You've been there, huh?


We hope you have enjoyed our... Alright, Willy.

And now stay tuned for John Oliver... - Let's go.

...and the news, which follows immediately.

John Oliver, with the 8 A.M. News. tops the news today.

In the most daring train robbery of all time...

At approximately 4 A.M. this morning, an unknown number of men dressed in...

...plastic coveralls, and with ghostly white stockings covering their faces...

...stopped and looted a special train, carrying over 10 million dollars in... to the San Francisco depository.

Discovery of the robbery and broadcasting of the alarm was...

...delayed because of the remote locale of the train hold-up... the area during the night and early morning hours.

Police, who have issued a 10-state alarm...

...described it as the biggest train robbery in American history...

...and by the apparent speed with which it was executed, the best-planned.

The men were dressed in plastic coveralls and with ghos--

12-L-1 to the station...

What, are you crazy or something?

Don't worry about anything that's behind us.

And now, back to the local news.

The nation was saddened today by the news from Pensacola, Florida...

You know, 48's not too old.

You know, I think I'll get married again.

Uh, 418-99, stand by for the correction.


I want to meet one of those young ones.

I mean, you know, one that's had a little experience.

Oh, you know, say, about 30?

Hey, with you doing all them stunts in the movies... must have married a swell-looking girl, huh?

I never was married.

Huh! No kidding.

You never was? - No.

Huh. How come?

I don't know.

Say, Frankie... - Yeah?

How many races you driven in, hmm?



I've always been fascinated with auto racing.

You must have started pretty young.


Only 16.

The officials didn't know that, though.

In Jersey you have to be 18, even for midgets.

It was always big cars for me, though.

I even talked a guy into letting me test his methanol special.

Oh, man.

You should have seen those other punks on that track choke in my exhaust.

102.7 average, 5 laps.

102.7, huh?

Sounds good enough for Indianapolis.


That wouldn't even get you to the preliminaries up there.

3 years ago I had to make 139.2, just to qualify.

I could have won that year.

Those crummy officials.

You jumped the yellow light, didn't you?

That crack-up was almost into the infield.

I didn't even think they were going to flash the yellow.

So instead of holding position...

...I figured it'd be best if I got past the wreck, fast.

And they bar me for life.

Well, if they hadn't, I wouldn't have the best wheel man in the business...

...and you wouldn't be a millionaire.


Are the crane truck and the van taken care of?

Oh, yeah.


That's a good spot. The trees are so thick you can't even see them.

Alright, it's 8:30. You warm up the truck, I'll open the doors.

Ah, it's 8:30 already, huh?


The truck.

You OK?

Sure. Sure, I'm OK.

Alright, let's go.

We now take you to Salt Lake City, where KCBO correspondent John Oliver... covering the most amazing robbery of all time.

Here is a special bulletin on the gold train robbery:

Police are asking all citizens to be on the lookout for 2 vehicles... a large moving van, the other a crane truck...

...reported to be the vehicles used by the ghost-faced bandits.

Anyone seeing vehicles of this description traveling in company...

...or forked together, please notify your local police at once.

Unit 7. Trucks investigated. Not wanted vehicles. Return to station. KLK out.

Alright, roger. Stand by.

What's the trouble, officer? Oh, it's just routine.

What are you carrying? - Furniture.

My own. - Let's take a look.

So you like gum? - Well, they say it keeps you from smoking.

How long you been on the road? - Let's see...left Salt Lake about 8 hours ago.

8 hours from Salt Lake. You're really moving.

Hey, Tom, come up here a minute!

Hey, uh...


Would you kinda take it careful, fellas?

If I get so much as a scratch on that stuff, my wife will kill me!

Well, you know how women are.

You're OK, buddy.

Take it easy, pal. - Yeah, you too.

Hey, does that gum-chewing really help cut down your smoking?

Oh, I don't smoke. I just want to make sure I don't start.

12-33, stand by.

13-A-43, clear.

TSI-11, clear...

Hey, wait a minute. Hold on there! Halt!

Hold up there!




TL-75, stand by.

Why don't they say something?

What do you want to hear, your name?

No. You know what I mean.

Nothing about those guards knocked out by the gas, or the two guys we slugged.

They weren't hit too hard, were they?

How do you suppose the police know about the trucks and the mask?

Yeah, but things happen sometimes.

609, can you handle the call? No traffic unit available.


I know one thing...

I'll be glad when we get past one of these roadblocks.

This is it.

With that look on your face, you might as well tell them the whole story.

You won't get this service every day.

That's OK. We'll sit. Sorry, buddy. Everybody out.

Let's check the seal. - Yeah, yeah.

What's all that for?

I just follow orders, fella.

That guy looks like he's trying to make his own road.

A fella could get hurt that way.

OK, Dave? - All secure.

What happened to him? - He got hurt.

You're OK.

Say, um, I've been having a little engine trouble.

Would it goof anything if I pulled over and had a look at it?

Pull over there. About 25, 30 yards.

Thanks a lot.

Let's move.

So, they give me 10 lousy years.

Good behavior, I'm out in 6.

That's where I read all about Rio.

No kidding.

You ought to come down there with us.

We take you now to John Oliver in Salt Lake City...

...for further news on the gold train robbery.

The first break in the fabulous gold robbery occurred about an hour and... a half ago, when a part of the $10 million...

Watch it! Watch it!

One of the bandits was shot and killed while attempting to run...

...through a police roadblock. What's the matter? You deaf?

I wonder how they found that out.

You suppose they know which way we're heading?

Well, if you'll clam up for a while, maybe we'll find out!

The claimed man was tentatively identified as Roland "Rolly" Adams.

Police have intensified their search for the apparently abandoned van...

...and crane truck...

I wonder how they found Rolly.

No wonder you got set up so many times. You think cops are dumb!

Skeets? - Look, just relax, will you? Keep your eyes on the road.

Maybe we should pull over and wait for Eddie.

Maybe he'll want to change the plans.

Maybe you'll keep quiet for a while, huh?

A huge dragnet for the white stocking- faced bandits has now spread... 23 states, with still no trace of the truck believed to be carrying...

...the remainder of the $10 million in gold.

The engineer and fireman of the train, injured during the raid...

...and the guards who were rendered unconscious by the gas fumes...

...have all been released from the hospital at Vandervere, Utah.

In an effort to trap the elusive gold bandits, police have tightened...

...the web by calling in reservists, thus allowing them to establish an...

...unprecedented number of roadblocks, covering...

...every highway and back road as far east as Ohio.

Authorities have asked all trucking companies to put as few vehicles on...

...the road as possible, in an attempt to narrow down the truck traffic.

We're right, aren't we?

If we wasn't, I'd have told you.

There it is.

where's the, uh...?

Right around the back, to the left.

Fill it up, will you?

Don't get many trucks nowadays since the new highway's in.

They, uh, caught those robbers yet?

No...I don't know.

They'll catch them.

How's that?

Can't help but catch them.

Fellas like that hardly have a chance nowadays...

...with radio and all that science against them.

You think so, huh? - Ah, sure.

Now back a few years ago, it was different. A man had a real chance.

Nowadays, everything's got a system that's pretty hard to beat.

I don't know.

I still think it's possible.

That's the way to talk. Don't let an old codger like me get you down.

Yes sir, I can remember when I was a young buck like you...

Oh, it'll take 25 or 30 gallons. It's almost empty.

Yes sir, there are all sorts of opportunity. there's too much opportunity!

Now, if when I'd have been your age, I'd have hitched onto one single thing...

...and stuck to it -- heh -- there's no telling where I'd be today.

Y'know, that's what I'm planning to do.

I figure that if a guy is going to make it, he's got to specialize.

He's got to find one thing and stick to it, no matter what.

That's the spirit.

How's the oil?

I'll check.

No sir, that...that don't mean nothing to me.

Had to.

the Canadian border is only 500 miles from here. New York is 2000.

Right. So the cops figured they'd head for the border.

I say they're smarter than that. I say they're headed for New York.

Well, you'll see.

What would you like?

A couple of ham sandwiches and two coffees to go. Black.

White or rye?


You come through any roadblocks yet?

Any what? - Roadblocks. You know, the gold robbery., not yet.

You know? I'd like to see them get away with it.

You've got to watch her, mister. She's got a criminal mind.

What would you do with all that loot, Hazel?

Go to London and Paris. Get the best of everything.

Me, I'd build me the fastest job on the road. About 4 inches off the ground...

...4 pots, chrome heads, 3/4-inch cam. That'd feed the cops a lot of smoke huh?

We now take you to Salt Lake City, where our special correspondent John Oliver... standing by with further information on the gold train robbery.

The grim shadow of murder may have fallen over the desperate flight of...

...the gold thieves tonight. Less than an hour ago, a passing motorist...

...discovered the body of an elderly gas station attendant, shot to death...

...near Lynn, Nevada. Police ruled out robbery as a motive when...

...the victim's wallet and the money in the cash drawer were found untouched.

An unusually large sale was still registered on the gas pump...

...leading the authorities to suspect the assailant... have been the driver of a commercial vehicle.

Investigators are now working on the possibility that the killer may have...

...been one of the gold train robbers.

Stay tuned to this station for further details.

What would make them do a thing like that?


Dollar twenty.

Keep the change, honey.

Don't listen to him. He's always very generous with my money.

I know the type.

I know.

Driving back this way soon?

I'll drive.

Why would they pull a stupid stunt like that?

You know, Eddie...

...maybe we shouldn't head for L.A.

Maybe we should head straight for the border.

If you want to be scared, Frankie, go ahead.

But don't be stupid.

An idea couldn't get past the border right now.

How old is your kid?

Hmm? - How old is your kid?


17, huh? Mine should be about 11 around now.

I thought you said you wasn't married.

Never seen him.

A weighing station. - Yeah.

What's your load? - Coffee.

He's 4500 pounds overweight. Better check him.

We now take you to Salt Lake City and our special correspondent John Oliver.

Astute police work tonight brought about the capture...

...of two more members of the gang that held up the gold train.

Less than an hour ago, guards at the small weighing station at Dalton, CA...

...investigated the overweight load of a truck heading west...

...and found one third of the stolen gold hidden in a load of coffee.

Authorities are certain that the remainder of the gang...

...and the still-missing third are in another truck, still at large.

Alright, here's the weighing station. This is where they got...

Commando and Skeets. They'll really be on their toes, so watch your step.

I'll do the talking.

Flammables? - Chemicals.

Let's see your manifest.

One of you, come with me; I've got to break your seal.

That's against the law, isn't it?

What's the matter, pal?

I just drive this thing. I'm not trying to be cute.

But you know better than I do, I can't let anyone break that seal.

Buddy, we could impound this whole truck, if we had to.

Alright, you can have the whole truck, but not...

...until I get somebody's name, and that paper.

He's OK.



Your buddy is pretty conscientious.

Yeah, well, it's, uh, it's his responsibility, you know?

Some authorities believe the bandits may not be headed for the border, as...

...reported earlier, but might have gone into hiding somewhere in California.

These officials point out that the two trucks thus far captured...

...were both taken on roads which terminate in California.

No news of the phantom truck carrying $3.5 million in gold...

...continues to be the big news up to this hour. one truck and $3.5 million in gold...

...seems to have vanished into thin air.

I want to place a call to Los Angeles, please.

Mr. Benjamin's office.

OK, honey.

Yes, Fran?

Mr. Benjamin, I'm sorry, but I'm just not feeling well this morning.

Do you think you can get along without me today?

Well, it'll be a struggle, but you go on home. Anything I can do?

No, thank you, don't bother. I'll be alright in the morning.

I hope so. And don't fret about the office.

Thank you.

14 miles. Did you see that?

We'll make it.

What are you...?

An ambulance.

A stinking, lousy ambulance.


Oh, hello, Frankie. - Hi, Fran.

I've got some coffee inside.

Thanks, honey, but we've got to move. Fast. Frank, get that hatch open.


We want to talk to you.

Well, what about? Air pollution control.


Smog control. You'd better clean the oil lances on that furnace.

It's smoking worse than a tar factory. What's your name?

Randy Holland. Well, I didn't know a thing about it.

I'll have it fixed first thing in the morning.

Now, look, uh...

Do you have to do that, officer? I'll have it fixed, first thing.

I'm sorry, Mr. Holland. Can I have your signature, please?

You'll be notified when to appear to show proof of the improvement.

Thank you.

A smog ticket.

Come on, you'd better get some sleep.

Oh, I'm alright. - Right now! Come on.

Come on, Frankie.

What's the matter?

Let's forget the whole thing.


Let's forget the whole thing. Let's leave right now.

Are you crazy?

After what we've been through?

Look, you're going to get everything you want.

But I've got everything I want.

I didn't want you to steal.

Eddie, a man's been killed.

It's 1 o'clock. We've got to be at the pier by 10. Turn on some news.

Come on, Frankie, wake up.

Come on, wake up. We've got all that plating to do.

Alright, let's put the chrome plate on it.

Easy, Frankie. Gold can't take much strain, you know.

It'll bend like a pretzel.

Everything all set, Frankie?

Yeah. I burned all the clothes and the furnace is shut off. - Fran?

All the doors and the back gate are locked...

...and the rent's paid until the end of the month.

Thanks, honey.

Uh, Eddie? - Yeah.

What are we going to do about these other cars?

We'll just have to leave them here.

Yeah, but if somebody busts in, you know what they're going to find?

One car registered to Mrs. Cora Riley and the other to Ann Martin.

Oh yeah, that's right.

You set to go? - Yeah.

Alright, start her up.

Better slow down a little. We don't want to get stopped by a traffic cop.

Relax, Frankie. We've got it made!

I'm not going to relax until we get on that freeway and out of L.A.

The boat doesn't leave until 11:00...

...but we do have to have the car on the loading dock by 10:15.

Ah, we'll make it with a half hour to spare. Right, Frankie?

Yeah, sure.

How's she handling?

Aw, a little sluggish. We'll make it alright.


There's the freeway now.

Well, another 40 minutes and we'll be in Pedro.

How do you feel now, Frankie?

How much is my half of this jalopy worth?

Where we're going, roughly...

...a million.

That's how I feel.

Like a million.

Good to hear you laughing again, honey.

I just hope it can last.

You leave that to me. worrying doesn't get you a thing.

Gray hair and wrinkles. Look.

No gray hair.

Like a baby's.

Passports. - What?

Oh...I've got them right here.

All 6 of them.

Any trouble?

No, Tony had them ready, along with the manifests.

There you are.

As soon as we get aboard ship...

...I'll destroy these 3.

Hey, look.


It's got to be a roadblock. Why else would it be piled up like this?

The morning rush.

The people who work for a living, Frankie.

We haven't moved a mile in 5 minutes. I've never seen so many cars.

I love every one of them.

Well, if they did have a roadblock here, we would have heard about it by now..

...wouldn't we, Eddie?

The police don't know who we are, or where we are, or what we're driving.

And the longer they stay confused...

And after we get aboard that ship, it's only a few weeks to Lisbon.

Police state that the harbor freeway outbound is heavily congested from...

...the interchange to the Washington Blvd. exit, due to a traffic accident.

Now, that's just great.

First they get you piled up like this, and then they tell you there's a wreck!

Don't you ever stop complaining?

Yeah, but if we knew about it, we could have taken the off-road!

We haven't moved a... - Moved a mile in the last 5 minutes. Yeah, I know.

Hey, look, we must be getting near the accident.

That was smart, lady!

Well, I'm terribly sorry. I guess I just wasn't paying any attention.

Yeah, well, you guessed right! Frankie.

Really, I said I was sorry.

I am insured, and I'll be happy to do anything I can...

10 mph and you can't stop. What are you, blind or something?

Alright, alright, no need to talk that way. - Well, it's alright, officer.

Let's forget the whole thing, you stay where you are, lady, it's my car...

...anyway, we'll get the cars unhooked, come on Frankie.

Let's get a hold of this thing. It's alright officer, we've got it.

Now let me give it a hand.

Step down on there, will you, sir?

You've got to get all your weight on there.

Look, uh...

If anything happens, you get lost in the crowd.

What? - Well, we've got to separate.

Oh Eddie, no. - Remember what I told the Whitman Hotel in San Pedro.

Look officer, you got lots better things to do than this. We can handle it.

Nah, we'll get it in a minute.

Hey, George. Look at that bumper.


We'd better check it.

Eddie, wait!