Nun Sara (Shirley MacLaine) is on the run in Mexico and is saved from cowboys by Hogan (Clint Eastwood), who is preparing for a future mission to capture a French fort. The pair become good friends, but Sara never does tell him the true reason behind her being outlawed.
A hard but mediocre cop is assigned to escort a prostitute into custody from Las Vegas to Phoenix, so that she can testify in a mob trial. But a lot of people are literally betting that they won't make it into town alive.
A Michigan farmer and a prospector form a partnership in the California gold country. Their adventures include buying and sharing a wife, hijacking a stage, kidnaping six prostitutes, and turning their mining camp into a boomtown. Along the way there is plenty of drinking, gambling, and singing. They even find time to do some creative gold mining.Written by
David J. Kiseleski <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Lee Marvin essentially reprised his Oscar-winning Kid Shelleen character from Cat Ballou (1965) for his portrayal of Ben Rumson. Ironically, where critics had lauded the scenery chewing of his earlier performance, they crucified his work on the same grounds in this movie. See more »
Soon after Ben, Pardner, and Mad Jack open their secret "gold mine" underneath No Name City, a young farmer is recruited to help dig. To emphasize the need for secrecy, Mad Jack threatens to shove a stick of dynamite in the farmer's mouth if he blabs. The film is set in 1849 or 1850, before California becomes a state. Dynamite wasn't yet invented (it was patented by Alfred Nobel in 1867). See more »
Mad Jack Duncan:
[grabs Jacob Woodling by the beard]
Mad Jack Duncan:
What about it Mormons?
Jacob. We need every penny, Jacob. And I can't bear another day of those martyred looks. There. There it is again!
This isn't a martyred look, Sarah. This look is puuuure - hatred.
Quiet! Brigham Young has twenty seven wives and he hasn't had half the trouble with them that I've had with the two of you!
Then simplify your life, Jacob. Sell me.
But Elizabeth: you don't know what you'll get.
I know what I've had.
See more »
After the end credits and the Paramount logo, the screen goes black and a closing medley of the songs is heard for several minutes. See more »
On its release to what were then called "neighborhood theatres" (i.e. theatres which showed films that had ended their first runs downtown), the film's running time was shortened by having three songs eliminated, "I Still See Elisa", "The First Thing You Know", and "Gold Fever". This left both Lee Marvin and Clint Eastwood with only one solo song each. The film was restored to its original length for its first television showing, and has remained that way ever since. See more »
Joshua Logan's screen version of "Paint your wagon" works a treat, perhaps because the original stage version is so little known and apparently has been given something of a make-over by screen writer Paddy Chayefsky. The fact that the leads (Lee Marvin, Clint Eastwood and Jean Seberg) can't sing matters not a jot; they perform with charisma, (even Seberg is less wan than usual) and bring a touch of realism to the proceedings, their songs seeming to evolve naturally from the action. Other singing duties are performed by the splendid Harve Presnell and a rousing, mostly male, chorus for this is a musical western of a more robust kind than "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers". It's plot, which concerns mining for gold, polygamy and the building of a town, fairly races along. Logan handles the whole thing with great aplomb and brings to it some nice, naturalistic touches sadly lacking from his earlier musicals, "South Pacific" and "Camelot". Most critics didn't warm to it, though and it remains largely under-valued.
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