Union officer Kerry Bradford escapes from Confederate Prison and is set to Virginia City in Nevada. Once there he finds that the former commander of his prison Vance Irby is planning to send $5 million in gold to save the Confederacy.
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During the American Civil War, Captain Kerry Bradford escapes from a notorious confederate prison. He and two of his men are sent to Virginia City where Confederate sympathizers are prepared to donate $5 million dollars to the cause of Southern independence. The war is going badly for the Confederacy and money may tip the war in their favor. On the stagecoach to Virginia City, Bradford meets and falls in love with Julia Hayne not realizing that she is one of the conspirators. When he gets to Virginia City, he also runs into Confederate Captain Vance Irby who has been sent to collect and safely deliver the gold. Irby manages to get out of the city but the Union cavalry is in hot pursue. When Bradfoed catches up with them, he not only has to fight Irby but also John Murrell, a bandit who has his own plans for the gold. He also Written by
The Union troops at the outpost were using "Trapdoor" Springfield rifles. 1863 Springfield rifles of Civil War vintage were not converted to trapdoor until 1865/1866. See more »
Don't reach for that. Put 'em up! I thought that little Deringer of yours looked a little too well used for a sample, Mr. Murrell. In any case, I didn't like your face. As a matter of fact, I still don't.
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At the end of Michael Curtiz's enormously successful Dodge City in 1939, Olivia DeHavilland decides she's married a professional lawman after all so Guinn Williams ends the film with a resounding, 'Virginia City here we come' as Errol Flynn will now take the job offer of marshal.
Too bad that they didn't make a sequel with those same characters. A year later when Virginia City was made it was a fanciful Civil War out west tale about a Confederate scheme at the last minute to smuggle several millions in gold bullion into the South for supplies to keep the war going. And what happens in the end strains credulity to say the least.
Carried over from the cast of Dodge City are Errol Flynn, Guinn Williams, Alan Hale, and Ward Bond. Olivia DeHavilland chose not to make the trip. At that point in her career she was fighting with Jack Warner to not keep playing crinolined heroines. So Miriam Hopkins was the leading lady here.
Other reviewers have said how lousy Miriam Hopkins was as a singing saloon chanteuse. In fairness to Miriam I have to point out that she's a Confederate spy singing a Union song, The Battle Cry of Freedom with about as much enthusiasm as she can muster. And she's also in that establishment the Sazerac saloon, not being paid for her voice.
Errol Flynn, a former prisoner at the Confederacy's Libby Prison, after an escape gets an assignment to check out rumors that Southern sympathizing mine owners are going to smuggle their find into the Confederacy. At the same time the former commandant of Libby, Randolph Scott, gets an assignment to bring the gold out.
Of course when they meet at the Sazerac all pretense to undercover is out the window. But Scott's got an ace up his sleeve in Miriam Hopkins who Flynn is kind of sweet on. She leads Errol astray and into the Confederate hands. Talk about true life casting, Errol being led astray by his hormones.
There's a third player in this game and that's Humphrey Bogart who plays the Mexican bandit leader Murrell with an accent like the Frito Bandito's. Bogey was also fighting for some better roles and in fact he got one the same year in High Sierra that would turn his career around. What possessed Jack Warner to cast him in this role, God only knows. Bogey's looks dumb in this part and he knows it. Why couldn't they just get someone like Gilbert Roland for the part?
There's quite a shootout in the desert over the gold. What happens to it is rather unbelievable, let's just say that Errol Flynn took a great deal upon himself and he was quite the lucky fellow to get the fate he got.
Virginia City is entertaining enough in a B western sort of way. But if I had three film icons like Errol Flynn, Randolph Scott, and Humphrey Bogart in my film, I'd sure have looked for a better property, pardner.
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