skip navigation
Valley of the Sun

Valley of the Sun(1942)

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here

Remind Me

TCMDb Archive MaterialsView all archives (0)


powered by AFI

In 1868, in Arizona, frontier scout Jonathan Ware is court-martialed for allowing three innocent Indians to escape from an Army jail. After Jonathan is sentenced to a five-year prison term, a friendly sergeant who understands the scout's concern for the injustices suffered by the Indians allows him to escape. Jonathan then hitches a ride on a stagecoach carrying Indian agent Jim Sawyer and a justice of the peace, who is accompanying the agent to the town of Desert Center to marry Sawyer and Christine Larson, the proprietor of the Busy Bee Café. When Sawyer discovers his non-paying passenger, he throws Jonathan off the stage, and the scout hitches a ride to town with an Indian. At the Busy Bee Café, Chris is awaiting the arrival of the coach when Willie, her simple-minded but kindhearted friend, warns her that Sawyer doesn't love her. Willie's instincts are correct, for in reality, Sawyer is a dishonorable man who has been cheating the Indians of their cattle. After the stage arrives, Sawyer and Chris dress for the wedding ceremony. Attired in his wedding finery, Sawyer goes to the café, and when he finds Jonathan there, a fistfight erupts in which the bridegroom is soundly beaten. Warrick, an English settler who detests the corrupt Sawyer, offers Jonathan refuge at his house, but when Sawyer's men track the scout there, they beat him up and throw him out of town. Finding Jonathan unconscious in the desert, Willie takes him to Chris for medical aid. Jonathan is attracted to Chris, and upon recovering, he joins forces with Willie and Warrick to stop the wedding. Crawling into the attic above the chapel, the three drop red ants on the bridegroom until he runs, scratching, out of the chapel. When Willie abducts the judge to prevent the wedding, Chris and Sawyer take the stage to Tucson, where they plan to marry. Along the trail, Jonathan, who has decided to travel to Washington to plead the case of the Indian, and the judge board the stage. With the judge on board, Chris and Sawyer decide to marry in the coach, but their nuptials are interrupted by an Indian attack. Recognizing his friend Jonathan, Chief Cochise takes the four passengers to his camp, where a meeting of the tribes is being held. To protect Chris, Jonathan tells the Indians that she is his wife. When Geronimo recognizes Sawyer as the man who has been stealing cattle from the Indians, he demands his life. After promising to return the cattle, Jonathan challenges Geronimo to a contest for Sawyer's life. When Jonathan wins the contest, the Indians set their four prisoners free, and while riding along a mountain trail, they see several cavalry officers riding the trail below. Sawyer calls to the men, but by the time the soldiers arrive, Jonathan has disappeared and Lieutenant Burke informs them that there is a bounty on the scout. Back in town, Chris, who has fallen in love with Jonathan, calls off her wedding. When a jealous Sawyer discovers Jonathan visiting Chris at the café, he calls the soldiers to arrest the scout. Soon after, Cochise visits Sawyer to demand the return of the cattle, but the agent reneges on his promise and takes Cochise prisoner instead. That night, Jonathan and his captors are camped along the trail when Chris, Willie, the judge and Warrick surprise his guards and free him. Determined to make Sawyer keep his word, Jonathan threatens to turn him over to the Indians unless he returns the cattle. As they are driving the herd toward the Indian camp, Jonathan sees war smoke signals and Sawyer admits to holding Cochise prisoner. The Indian war party is converging on the town just as Jonathan and Sawyer gallop in and free Cochise, halting the attack. After witnessing Jonathan's good deeds, the lieutenant lets him go free. Jonathan and Chris then marry and are bound for their honeymoon via stagecoach when Sawyer, in a hurry to leave the state, boards the coach. After knocking the intruder unconscious, Jonathan kisses his bride.