This is the story of Sonora Webster, a teenage runaway during the Depression. Her life's ambition is to travel to Atlantic City, where "all your dreams come true." After leaving home she accepts a job from Dr. Carver and his girl-and-horse high diving act. Starting out as a stable hand her goal is to become a real diving girl.
Dr. Carver's son, Al, helps her in her quest by helping her tame a wild horse she's named Lightning. Their early morning practices lead not only to Sonora being put into training as a diving girl, but also for Al's emotions for Sonora to begin to surface. Al leaves after an argument with his father and the diver girl, Marie, is injured in a practice. Sonora finally takes her place and becomes a real diving girl. The act is thriving but fairgrounds are suffering hard times and the show is closed. Al comes back with the surprise revelation of getting the act booked in Atlantic City. Dr. Carver passes away en route to New Jersey and Al takes over. He asks Sonora to marry him before her first jump in her dream city. She accepts but then has an accident in the dive that leaves her permanently blind. Al will not let her do the show and brings Marie back to take her place. Sonora does not want to sit on the sidelines anymore and takes matters into her own hands. Practicing all day to finally make it back up the ladder, she has Marie locked in her trailer while she makes the jump to prove to everyone and herself that she can do it and without the audience ever knowing that she is blind.
Gabrielle Anwar, Cliff Robertson, Michael Schoeffling, Dylan Kussman