Lightning Jack Kane, a long-sighted Australian outlaw in the American west, lives with his horse, Mate. After the rest of his gang is killed in a robbery gone wrong, Jack survives only to read of the events in the newspaper that he was nothing next to others. Annoyed at not being recognized as an outlaw, Jack attempts a robbery by himself and ends up taking young mute Ben Doyle as a hostage. He later discovers that, tired of never having been treated with the respect due to his disability and his race, Ben wishes to join him.
Jack attempts to teach Ben how to fire a gun and rob banks, with his first attempt at “on-the-job” training ending with Ben shooting himself in the foot. Across the course of the training, they pay occasional visits to saloons where Jack shows Ben the truth about adult life, including helping him to lose his virginity. However, the true nature of the saloon visits is for Jack to make contact with showgirl Lana Castel, who, unbeknownst to Jack, is madly in love with him.
When Ben’s training is complete, the two learn of a bank that is said to have the entire town armed and ready to protect it. Jack sees this as the test he has been waiting for, and together they hatch a plan to rob it. Everything seems to be going smoothly and they are set to begin until Jack discovers that a rival gang of outlaws is also planning to rob the bank. He is prepared to give up when Ben has a plan of his own.
Ben silently tips off the townspeople, who quickly swarm the bank with the rival outlaws inside. The gang is arrested and the entire town celebrates, allowing Jack and Ben to slip unnoticed into the bank and swiftly strip it clean. Before leaving, Jack jumps into the celebrations, ensuring that his grinning face is seen at the top of the town photo. By the time the true robbery is discovered, the two – and Lana – are gone, with a bounty of thousands on their heads and all of America searching for them – the life that Jack had always wanted.