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The Great Train Robbery

The Great Train Robbery(1941)

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FULL SYNOPSIS

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On the night that railroad detective Tom Logan is to guard a million-dollar shipment of gold aboard the Comanche Limited , he is late for work and arouses the suspicions of head detective Pierce. After questioning the Super and Tom's mother, Pierce learns that Tom's father was a train robber, and that his brother Duke is the shady owner of a roadhouse. Just as the Comanche is about to leave, a bloodied Tom arrives and jumps aboard. He is followed by Kay Stevens, an entertainer at Duke's roadhouse. Determined to have Kay removed from the train, the Super alerts the next station, Broken Bow, but the Comanche speeds past the stop signals. The Super then learns that the passengers were robbed and forced to walk back to Broken Bow. While the Super is talking to "Dad" Halliday, the stationmaster at Coyote Wells, the next stop, Dad hears the Comanche whistle as it passes. The Super, Pierce and Dad take a special engine along the line from Coyote Wells to the last stop, but they cannot find the train, even though there is only a single track between the last two stations. The men are joined by Barnsdale, the president of the line, and as they ponder the mystery and Tom's possible complicity, a flashback to before the train's disappearance reveals that Tom spent the evening with his mother celebrating her birthday at Duke's roadhouse. Duke is dismayed to learn that Tom will be guarding the gold, as he is the leader of the gang, and so he has his men waylay Tom after he leaves. Despite being driven off the road, Tom makes it to the Comanche on time. Kay, with whom both Tom and Duke are in love, has become suspicious of Duke's behavior and follows Tom. The gang takes over the train just past Broken Bow, and Tom is knocked out when he hesitates to shoot Duke. After the passengers disembark, the gang takes the train along an abandoned spur to the old San Cristobal mining tunnel, and while they start a landslide to cover the entrance to the tunnel, two of Duke's henchmen play a recording of the Comanche outside of Coyote Wells so that Dad will think it passed by on time. Tom, who manages to escape from the train, finds the tunnel with the aid of an old prospector named "Whiskers." Tom finds Kay, and after fighting with Duke, Tom and Kay crash the engine through the landslide out onto the track. Just then, the Super and the others pass by and head their engine over to the tunnel. Duke and his men attempt to escape with the gold but are stopped by Tom and the others. Pierce shoots Duke as he attempts to flee, and as Duke dies, he tells Pierce that Tom is not connected to the gang. His name cleared and the gold recovered, Tom plans to marry Kay.