Rio Bravo (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Produced by||Howard Hawks|
|Based on||"Rio Bravo"|
by B. H. McCampbell
|Distributed by||Warner Bros.|
|Box office||$5.75 million (US and Canada rentals)|
Rio Bravo is a 1959 American
In the town of Rio Bravo, Texas, sheriff's deputy Dude (
Joe heads to his brother's saloon, where a bloody Chance comes to arrest him for the murder of the bystander. Another patron draws his gun on Chance, but Dude shoots the gun out of the man's hand. Joe is locked up in the local jail. Chance is willing to deputize Dude, provided he can stay sober. Both remember how good with a gun Dude used to be.
Chance's friend Pat Wheeler (
A mysterious woman nicknamed Feathers (
Feathers leaves the poker game a winner. Chance follows her up to her room and confronts her as a card cheat, with his evidence three missing aces from the deck of cards being used in the game and a handbill indicating she is wanted for card cheating. Colorado intervenes, saying another participant in the game is the real cheat. They confront the card cheat and prove his guilt. Chance refuses to apologize to Feathers for doing his job, but is no longer in a hurry to make her leave town.
As Wheeler is walking back to the hotel, he is shot dead by a Burdette man hiding in the stable. Colorado offers to help, but is angrily turned away by Chance, who says, "You had a chance to get in this and you didn't want it." Chance and Dude flush out the shooter, who escapes into Nathan's saloon after Dude wounds him. Dude believes the man has muddy boots, but everyone in the bar has clean boots. Two of Burdette's men suggest Dude needs a drink and one throws a silver dollar into a spittoon. The bartender puts a beer on the bar, but Dude notices blood dripping into the glass from above. He turns, fires, and kills the shooter.
Chance goes back to the hotel to sleep. Without his knowledge, Feathers stands guard at the door to keep him safe, then returns to her room when he awakens. Chance discovers what she did and advises that she should leave on the next stagecoach.
Nathan Burdette (
Carlos says Feathers will not get on the stagecoach. She tells the sheriff she does not want to leave, then gives him a kiss. He indicates if he were not in such a fix at the jail, things between them might be different.
Colorado visits the jail to tell Chance the meaning of a song, "
The next morning, while Dude is standing guard at the town entryway, four Burdette men attack him from behind and tie him up in a stable. Others get the drop on Chance, whose rifle is just out of reach. From inside the hotel, acting on Colorado's instructions, Feathers throws a flower pot through a window a moment after Colorado steps out on the porch, distracting the Burdette men. Colorado quickly throws Chance's rifle to him and the two men shoot the three Burdette hands.
Chance decides to have his men hole up in the jail, as it will take several more days for the United States Marshal to arrive to take Joe to the Presidio. Dude's nerves are shot, but as he is about to take a drink, the sound of "The Cutthroat Song" played by Burdette's musicians steels his resolve. He and Chance go to the hotel to round up additional supplies, but Carlos and Consuelo are captured by Burdette's men, who trick Chance into charging and falling over a rope tied at the bottom of the stairs. Dude and Feathers are unable to help.
Chance is ordered to take the men to the jail to let Joe go. He is reluctant to do so, but Dude implores Chance to cooperate, saying that Stumpy is alone and has no food or water to hold out very long. The remaining Burdette men at the hotel take Dude hostage and Nathan Burdette offers to trade him later for Joe.
Stumpy opens fire at the jail, holding off Burdette's men. Chance and Colorado then take Joe to make the trade for Dude at a warehouse, leaving Stumpy behind because of his bad leg. During the trade, walking in opposite directions, Dude tackles Joe and they scuffle while a gunfight erupts. Stumpy and Carlos turn up and help even the odds. Dude overpowers Joe. The lawmen throw dynamite sticks at the warehouse where Burdette and his men are holed up, shooting the sticks to detonate them. After a few explosions rock the warehouse, the criminals surrender.
All is quiet in town as Chance gets reacquainted with Feathers, who models a skimpy new costume she will be wearing in her new job singing at the hotel. After a pair of sheer tights comes floating from a window to the street, a delighted Stumpy retrieves it, but Dude cautions him to mind his own business.