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Don Ricardo Returns is a 1946 film that tells a story of love and betrayal set in the wild California frontier of 1835. After being shanghaied by his evil cousin and spending two years at sea, the rakish Spaniard Don Ricardo (Fred Colby) returns home to claim his inheritance, the Rancho San Luis Rey. He arrives only to find that his treacherous cousin, Don Jose (Anthony Warde), has declared him legally dead in a plot to steal his rightful property. Ricardo vows to reclaim what is rightfully his, enlisting the aid of both his sweetheart Dorthea (Lita Baron) and the local mission priests to do so. With most of the world believing him to be dead, Don Ricardo disguises himself as a local peon until he can find a way to trap his wicked cousin into incriminating himself, in order to reclaim the life that had been stolen from him -- and gain revenge for past wrongs.