Sergeant York (film)

The Lord sure does move in mysterious ways.
I'm a believin' that this here life we're living is something the Lord done give us, and we got to be a-living it as best we can — and I'm figuring that killing other folks is no part of what he was intending us to be a-doing here.
I figured them guns was killin' hundreds, maybe thousands, and there weren't nothin' anybody could do, but to stop them guns. And that's what I done.

Sergeant York is a 1941 biographical film about the life of Alvin C. York, the most-decorated American soldier of World War I, directed by Howard Hawks. The screenplay was adapted by Harry Chandlee, Abem Finkel, John Huston, Howard Koch, and Sam Cowan (uncredited) from the diary of Alvin York as edited by Tom Skeyhill. The American Film Institute ranked the film 57th in its 100 most inspirational American movies. It also rated Alvin York 35th in its list of the top 50 heroes in American cinema. In 2008 it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

QuotesEdit

Pastor Rosier Pile: See that rock, Alvin? You've been plowin' around that rock a heap o' years.
Alvin: Sure have!
Pastor Rosier Pile: Did you ever think when you start plowin' yer furrows crooked, it's mighty hard to get 'em straight again?
Alvin: I never thought on it much.
Pastor Rosier Pile: It's that-a-way, I reckon, with other things 'sides plowin'. Satan's got ya by the shirt tail, Alvin!

Alvin: The way I figure, there ain't no use for a fellow going out looking for religion. It's well… it's just got to come to a fellow.
Pastor Rosier Pile: It'll come my boy, you'll see. Maybe slow-like the way daylight comes, and maybe in flash like a bolt of lightning.
Alvin: When?
Pastor Rosier Pile: When you ain't even expecting it.
Alvin: Well, I hope so.

Gracie Williams: Folks say you're no good, 'ceptin' for fighting and hell-raising.

Ike Botkin: Ain't nobody ever cut 5 centers, lessen' it were Dan'l Boone.

Alvin: I ain't a-goin' to war. War's killin', and the book's agin' killin! So war is agin' the book!

Sgt. Early [at the target range]: Remember, guys, you're usin' real live ammunition! A bullet hasn't got any brains! It'll hit whatever you're aimin' at, so don't start murdering each other!

Sergeant: Where did ya learn to shoot York?
Alvin: Well I ain't never learned Sergeant! Folks back home used to say I could shoot a rifle before I was weaned, but they was exaggeratin' some.

Alvin: I don't want to be no corporal.
Captain Danforth: Why not?
Major Buxton: Wait a minute, captain, let him talk.
Alvin: Well, you see…
Major Buxton: Is it because of your religious convictions, York?
Alvin: Yes, sir, that's it. You see, I believe in the Bible, and I'm a believin' that this here life we're living is something the Lord done give us, and we got to be a-living it as best we can — and I'm figuring that killing other folks is no part of what he was intending us to be a-doing here.

Major Buxton: York, What do you suppose Boone that was looking for when he went out into the wilderness?
Alvin: Well, I never thought much on it.
Major Buxton: Was he looking for new lands?
Alvin: Might be.
Major Buxton: Maybe, maybe for something more, something that a man just can't see with his eyes, or hold in his hands. Something that some men don't even know they have until they've lost it.
Alvin: Yes, sir?
Major Buxton: To be free. Now that's quite a word, "Freedom" — I think that's what he wanted. I think that's what sent Boone into your Tennessee country.
Alvin: That… that what this here book's about?
Major Buxton: Yep. That's the story of a whole people's struggle for freedom, from the very beginning until nowfor we're still struggling. It's quite a story York, how they all got together and set up a government, whereby all men were pledged to defend the rights of each man, and each man to defend the the rights of all men. We call that a government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

Alvin [quoting the Bible, in resolving to remain in the U.S. Army, and to fight in the Great War]: Therefore, render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's.

Alvin: Well I'm as much agin' killin' as ever, sir. But it was this way, Colonel. When I started out, I felt just like you said, but when I hear them machine guns a-goin', and all them fellas are droppin' around me... I figured them guns was killin' hundreds, maybe thousands, and there weren't nothin' anybody could do, but to stop them guns. And that's what I done.
Maj. Buxton: Do you mean to tell me that you did it to save lives?
Alvin: Yes sir, that was why.
Maj. Buxton [amazed]: Well, York, what you've just told me is the most extraordinary thing of all.

Alvin: What we done in France, we had to do. And some as done it, didn't come back, and that kind of thing ain't for buying and selling.

Alvin: The Lord sure does move in mysterious ways.

Quotes about Sergeant YorkEdit

  • In 1941, on the eve of the United States' entry into the Second World War, York consented to having his diary adapted to film, personally selecting Gary Cooper to portray him as a condition for the filming. The film would be universally acclaimed as one of the best film biographies of all time, earning an Oscar for Best Actor for Cooper and an Oscar nomination for Best Picture. It was a straightforward adaptation of the diary with very little Hollywood embellishment; the only embellishment which York acknowledged was that the film showed his born-again Christianity as due to being struck by lightning on his way to a confrontation with a rival, whereas it was actually simply his meeting his future wife and falling in love.

External linksEdit

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Last modified on 12 March 2014, at 18:00