Pale Rider is a 1985 American Western movie produced and directed by Clint Eastwood, who also stars. The title refers to the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, as the spirit of the rider of the light horse (Eastwood) represents Death. The film, which grossed over $41 million at the box office, became the highest-grossing Western of the 1980s. Now, know about Pale Rider.
Pale Rider: Movie Synopsis
In the Old West, outside of LaHood, California in Carbon Valley, mining baron Coy LaHood wages a war of intimidation against independent prospectors and their families, including Hull Barrett, who is courting Sarah Wheeler. Sarah’s teenage daughter Megan prays for deliverance from LaHood after a gang of his men attack a mining camp and kill her dog. Shortly after, a man on a light horse rides into Carbon Valley.
As Hull heads into town to pick up supplies, four of Lahood’s men beat him up with ax handles before the stranger defeats them with his own ax handle. Hull then invites his savior to dinner, and while the stranger is washing up, he notices what appear to be six bullet wounds on his back. When the stranger arrives at the dinner table, he wears a clerical collar and is then referred to as a “preacher”. Coy LaHood’s son, Joshua, tries to intimidate the Preacher with a giant worker named Club. However, Preacher incapacitates Club with a sledgehammer strike to the groin.
Coy returns from Sacramento, learns of the Preacher’s arrival, and unsuccessfully attempts to bribe and then threaten him. At Preacher’s suggestion, LaHood then offers the miners $1,000 per claim, provided they evacuate within 24 hours. LaHood says he plans to hire the services of a corrupt marshal named Stockburn to clean them up if they refuse. The miners eventually reject LaHood’s offer despite Preacher warning them about Stockburn.
Megan expresses her love for Preacher, but he gently rejects her. Megan angrily assumes that Preacher is really in love with Sarah. LaHood’s men dam the creek, forcing the miners to mine a dry bed. Megan goes to LaHood’s camp where Joshua shows her a sniper operation before trying to rape her. The preacher arrives on horseback, disarms Joshua, and shoots him in the arm.
Stockburn and his deputies arrive in LaHood. Coy gives him a rough description of the Preacher, which startles Stockburn because the man Coy describes is dead. Spider Conway, one of the miners and Coy’s former partner, discovers a large gold nugget in a dry creek bed and drives into town with his teenage sons, where drunken expletives are shouted at LaHood from the street.
Stockburn and his deputies shoot him, and Stockburn sends word that he wants the preacher to meet him in town the next morning. Sarah begs the Preacher not to go and tells him that she will marry Hull, despite her feelings for the Preacher.
The next day, Preacher and Hull blow up the LaHood mining site with dynamite. To prevent Hull from following him, the Preacher spooks Hull’s horse and rides into town alone. In the firefight that follows, he kills all but two of LaHood’s men, who escape, and then one by one, he kills all six of Stockburn’s deputies.
In the end, Preacher kills Stockburn, who recognizes him in disbelief, before being shot in the head. LaHood, watching from his office, aims his rifle at the Preacher, but is shot by Hull. The preacher nods to Hull and drives off towards the snowy mountains. Megan arrives and as she sees Preacher leaving, shouts her love and thanks. “Pale Rider.’