California (1947 film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||John Farrow|
|Produced by||John Farrow
Seton I. Miller
|Screenplay by||Frank Butler
Seton I. Miller (uncredited)
|Story by||Boris Ingster|
|Music by||Victor Young|
|Edited by||Eda Warren|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Box office||$3.9 million (US rentals)|
A deserter who had been an Army lieutenant, Jonathan Trumbo is hired to guide a wagon train bound for California during the California Gold Rush. When a woman named Lily Bishop is accused of cheating at poker in a saloon, farmer Michael Fabian invites her to join the wagon train over Trumbo's strenuous objections. Trumbo, too, accuses of her of cheating at cards after losing to Lily, an insult she promises not to forget.
Lily leaves with Booth Pennock, a ruffian who injures Trumbo with a whip before departing. Lily ends up in Pharaoh City, running a saloon. The town is controlled by Pharaoh Coffin, a former slave trader who opposes the law and order of California approving statehood. Trumbo turns up and gets involved in a saloon brawl. Lily orders him never to set foot there again, but Trumbo wins the place in a poker game.
She mistakenly takes Pharaoh to be an honest man and moves onto his hacienda. Coffin's men beat up Trumbo, who is rescued on the trail by Mexicans and vows revenge. When his wounds heal, Trumbo returns and becomes a spokesman for statehood advocacy. Coffin's hired men kill Fabian for similar beliefs, causing Lily to finally see Coffin for the crazed villain he is. Trumbo forms a posse and corners Coffin, who is descending into madness. Lily shoots him. Trumbo, in love with Lily, promises to return to the Army to atone for his desertion, hoping someday to return to her.
- Barbara Stanwyck as Lily Bishop
- Ray Milland as Jonathan Trumbo
- Barry Fitzgerald as Michael Fabian
- George Coulouris as Pharaoh Coffin
- Albert Dekker as Pike
- Anthony Quinn as Hernandez
- Gavin Muir as Booth Pennock