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Rainbow Over the Rockies

Rainbow Over the Rockies(1947)

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Crying Boy

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FULL SYNOPSIS

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When the cattle he is herding to Cheyenne run into an unexpected barbed wire fence, cowboy Jimmy Wakely goes to investigate and discovers that rancher Charlie Miller now owns the once open range land. Jimmy's opinionated boss and uncle, Frank Porter, an old friend of Charlie, refuses to listen to Charlie's advice to settle down on a ranch, and becomes enraged when Charlie denies him permission to cross the land. Jimmy tries to smooth things over with Charlie, offering to pay a toll for the cattle, but Charlie insists on forcing Frank to stop herding. While Jimmy, Charlie, Charlie's son Bill and his daughter Ellen are discussing the situation, Charlie's foreman, John Harvin, meets secretly with Frank's foreman, Dave Warren. Harvin convinces Warren to join him in a plot to rustle both cattlemen's herds by instigating a range war between them and then taking advantage of the resulting confusion to steal from them. As his first act, Warren tells Frank that Charlie deliberately put up the fence in order to extract a toll from him. Infuriated, Frank orders his men to tear down the fence and drive his cattle onto Charlie's land. When Charlie hears about Frank's actions, he announces that he is impounding Frank's herd and will be collecting a fee for their release. To stop the quickly escalating tension, Jimmy proposes that they allow Sheriff George Perry to settle the matter, but when the sheriff takes Charlie's side, Frank becomes even more determined to have his way. Jimmy, however, convinces his uncle to give him one last chance to resolve the conflict legally. To that end, Jimmy meets secretly with Ellen and, upon learning that the neighboring land is for sale, asks her to help him put a claim on it and swears her to secrecy. The next morning, Harvin accuses Jimmy of rustling some of Charlie's herd, and an enraged Charlie and Bill go to confront Jimmy. Although Ellen corroborates Jimmy's story that he was with her the previous night, they both refuse to reveal what they were doing together. Determined to expose the real rustlers, Jimmy and his sidekick Lasses search for horse tracks near where the cattle were stolen but find nothing. When they happen upon two men with illegal branding irons, however, they take them at gunpoint to Charlie. The men, who work for Charlie, claim that Jimmy and Lasses are trying to frame them, and Charlie takes his workers' side. Seeing no other recourse, Jimmy tells his uncle about his land purchase, and Frank happily orders his hands to construct a fence at Charlie's border, knowing that his rival cannot drive his herd to water without first securing permission from him. As predicted, the fence enrages Charlie and brings matters to an apparent impasse. After Jimmy deduces that the rustlers placed fake cattle hooves on their horses' feet to disguise their movements, he and Lasses capture two more of the thieves, who are riding horses with Charlie's brand on them. Not recognizing the men, Charlie once again denies any guilt, and Bill finally suggests that he and Jimmy settle the issue with a duel. Knowing that Harvin and the other rustlers are hiding nearby, Warren orders everyone except Jimmy and Bill to lay down their guns. After Jimmy shoots the gun out of Bill's hand, Harvin and his men begin firing on the defenseless cowboys. Jimmy and Bill manage to secure guns from a wagon, however, and a fierce gunfight ensues. Ellen soon arrives with the sheriff, and the rustlers are routed. Later, Jimmy sings a love song to Ellen as they sit together on the Miller and Porter "consolidated" ranch.