Paths of Glory

Paths of Glory quotes

35 total quotes (ID: 956)

Colonel Dax
General Broulard
General Paul Mireau
Others


Ferol: What do I have to die for, Father?...I'm scared, I'm scared!


Judge: This is a general courtmartial and we shall therefore dispense with unnecessary formalities. These men are charged with cowardice in the face of the enemy and will be tried for that offense... The indictment is lengthy and there's no point in reading it. The indictment is that the accused showed cowardice in the face of the enemy during the attack on the Ant Hill.

Lt. Roget: "It's impossible, sir. All the men are falling back.

Narrator: War began between Germany and France on August 3, 1914. Five weeks later, the German army had smashed its way to within 18 miles of Paris. There the battered French miraculously rallied their forces at the Marne River, and in a series of unexpected counterattacks, drove the Germans back. The Front was stabilized and shortly afterward developed into a continuous line of heavily fortified trenches zigzagging their way five hundred miles from the English Channel to the Swiss frontier. By 1916, after two grisly years of trench warfare, the battle lines had changed very little. Successful attacks were measured in hundreds of yards - and paid for in lives by hundreds of thousands.

Saint-Auban: And I submit that the attack was a stain on the flag of France, a blot on the honor of every man, woman, and child in the French nation. It is to us that the sad, distressing, repellent duty falls, gentlemen. I ask this court to find the accused guilty...

Broulard: Come, come, Colonel Dax. Don't overdo the surprise. You've been after the job from the start. We all know that, my boy.
Dax: I may be many things, sir. But I am not your boy.
Broulard: It would be a pity to lose your promotion before you get it - a promotion you have so very carefully planned for.
[Dax refuses the promotion, telling him what he can do with it]
Broulard: Colonel Dax, you will apologize at once or you shall be placed under arrest!
Dax: I apologize for not being entirely honest with you. I apologize for not revealing my true feelings. I apologize, sir, for not telling you sooner that you're a degenerate, sadistic old man. AND YOU CAN GO TO HELL BEFORE I APOLOGIZE TO YOU NOW OR EVER AGAIN.
Broulard: Colonel Dax, you're a disappointment to me. You've spoiled the keenness of your mind by wallowing in sentimentality. You really did want to save those men, and you were not angling for Mireau's command. You are an idealist - and I pity you as I would the village idiot. We're fighting a war, Dax, a war that we've got to win. Those men didn't fight, so they were shot. You bring charges against General Mireau, so I insist that he answer them. Wherein have I done wrong?
Dax: Because you don't know the answer to that question, I pity you.

Dax: They're not cowards, so if some of them didn't leave the trenches, it must have been because it was impossible.
Mireau: They were ordered to attack. It was their duty to obey that order. We can't leave it up to the men to decide when an order is possible or not. If it was impossible, the only proof of that would be their dead bodies lying in the bottom of the trenches. They are scum, Colonel, the whole rotten regiment; a pack of sneaking, whining, tail-dragging curs.
Dax: Do you really believe that, sir?
Mireau: Yes, I do. That's exactly what I believe. And what's more, it's an incontestable fact.
Dax: Then why not shoot the entire regiment? I'm perfectly serious...If it's an example you want, then take me...One man will do as well as a hundred. The logical choice is the officer most responsible for the attack.

Dax: Why didn't you leave the trenches?
Paris: Major Vignon was shot, and he fell back on top of me, sir, and knocked me cold.
Dax: And were you lying unconscious in the trenches during the entire attack?
Paris: Yes, sir.
Judge: Have you any witnesses to that?
Paris: No, sir. I guess everybody was too busy to notice me. There were so many others lying dead anyway.
Judge: But you have no witnesses?
Paris: No, sir. I only have a rather large cut on my head, sir.
Judge: That could have been self-inflicted later.

Mireau: [ordering artillary fire on his own men] The troops are mutinying, refusing to advance!
[Rousseau refuses the order twice, before demanding to see it in writing]
Rousseau: Supposing you're killed. Then where will I be?
Mireau: You'll be in front of a firing squad tomorrow morning, that's where you'll be. Hand over your command and report yourself under arrest to my headquarters.

Mireau: I am responsible for the lives of 8,000 men. What is my ambition against that? What is my reputation in comparison to that? My men come first of all, George. And those men know it, too.
Broulard: I know that they do.
Mireau: You see, George, those men know that I would never let them down.
Broulard: That goes without saying.
Mireau: The life of one of those soldiers means more to me than all the stars and decorations and honors in France.

Mireau: I never got in the habit of sitting. I like to be on my feet. Keep on the move...I can't understand these arm-chair officers, fellas trying to fight a war from behind a desk, waving papers at the enemy, worrying about whether a mouse is gonna run up their pants leg.
Dax: I don't know, General. If I had the choice between mice and Mausers, I think I'd take the mice every time.

Mireau: I'm awfully glad you could be there, George. This sort of thing is always rather grim but this one had a kind of splendor to it, don't you think?
Broulard: I have never seen an affair of this sort handled any better.
Mireau: The men died wonderfully! There's always that chance that one of them will do something that will leave everyone with a bad taste. This time, you couldn't ask for better.

Mireau: There is no such thing as shell shock!
Soldier: Yes, I have a wife...I'm never going to see her again. I'm going to be killed.
[Mireau slaps the soldier]
Mireau: Sergeant, I want you to arrange for the immediate transfer of this baby out of my regiment. I won't have any of our brave men contaminated by him.

Paris: See that ****roach? Tomorrow morning we'll be dead and it'll be alive. It will have more contact with my wife and child than I will. I'll be nothing, and it'll be alive.
Ferol: [crushes the ****roach] Now you've got the edge on him.

Priest: Have faith in your Creator - Death comes to us all.
Arnaud: That's really deep! Death comes to us all. [holds up his whiskey bottle] This is my religion.