Finian's Rainbow

Year: 1968

Studio: Warner Brothers - Seven Arts


Director: Francis Ford Coppola


Brief Synopsis:

Finian has come with his daughter, Sharon, to America from Ireland to find his fortune. He has brought a magic crock of gold with him and he and Sharon share adventures with a leprechaun, a racist Senator and the poor local people. Sharon falls in love with one of the local men and, in the end, thanks to the crock of gold and its magic powers, everything works out well for all except Finian, who returns to Ireland.

Detailed Synopsis:

Finian McLonergan (Fred Astaire) and his daughter, Sharon (Petula Clark), come from Ireland to America because Finian heard a legend that if one planted a pot of gold near Ft. Knox, he could become a rich man. Finian doesn't tell Sharon of his crazy plan and he doesn't let her know that he stole a pot of gold from some leprechauns in Glocca Morra, Ireland.

Finian and Sharon come across a plantation of poor sharecroppers and they help them pay off the taxes on the plantation in exchange for a small plot of land where Finian plans to bury his crock of gold. The leader of the plantation, Woody Mahoney (Don Francks), agrees to Finian's deal.

Finian goes out in the middle of the night with his crock of gold and a jug of liquor, looking for the perfect burying place for the gold. Og (Tommy Steele), a leprechaun from Glocca Morra, is following Finian but Finian is too drunk to see Og until he reveals himself fully to Finian. Og tells Finian that if the crock of gold is not returned to the leprechauns, they will all become mortal. Finian, however, is unmoved by Og's tale of woe and he refuses to return the gold until he has made his fortune from it.

Sharon goes looking for Finian but, instead meets Woody and they find that they are attracted to each other. Eventually, they fall in love and decide to get married.

Og, as he becomes more and more mortal, discovers women and, at first, falls for Sharon. But later, he meets Woody's sister, Susan, and he falls in love with her. Susan is unable to speak so she communicates through dance.

The state senator for the area in which the plantation is located is a miserable bigot. He wants to buy Woody's land and end the integrated living of the sharecroppers. He comes with the local sheriff to claim the land and Sharon gets angry and shouts, "I wish you were Black." What Sharon doesn't know, however, is that she is standing over the buried crock of gold and it has magical powers that will grant three wishes before it will turn into an ordinary pot. The senator immediately turns black and he has to escape quickly from his own dog, who has become violent towards him.

The sheriff declares that Sharon is a witch and he gives her 24 hours to find the senator and turn him back into a white man. At first, no one understands why Sharon's curse worked, but later Finian and Og realize that Sharon must have been standing over the crock when she said it. Unfortunately, no one remembers exactly where she was standing and Finian can't remember where he buried the gold. But, even if he could remember, it wouldn't help because Susan moved it after discovering it during a terrible rainstorm.

Og wants to help Sharon and he tries to explain the situation to Susan. In his frustration, he tells her, "I wish you could speak," and suddenly Susan starts speaking. Og realizes that he must be standing over the crock and he finds it and takes it to Finian. Even though Og knows there is only one wish left and that is the last chance to save the leprechauns, including him, from becoming mortal, he saves Sharon by letting her use the last wish to turn the senator, who has returned to the plantation, back into a white man.