Ragtime (1981) Poster



Younger Brother: What kind of music do you play?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: Anything they ask me to, and then I play ragtime.

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: I read music so good, white folks think I'm fakin' it.

Younger Brother: I design fireworks. That's my job.

[the black anarchists laugh in derision]

Younger Brother: . I can make bombs.

[They stop laughing and take him seriously]

P.C. O'Donnell: Nobody's intimidating me, Mister. You just don't know what you're getting yourself into, and I'm trying to keep your nose clean. Now, would you be a good boy and just get along.?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: I want my car cleaned!

P.C. O'Donnell: Clean it then, damn you! Clean it and go!

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: I want the man who did it to clean it!

P.C. O'Donnell: All right, all right, let me pit it this way. I can arrest you for blocking a public service exit, for creating a public nuisance, and about ten other things I ain't gonna mention. Now, am I making myself clear?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: Yes.

P.C. O'Donnell: Good.

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: Officer, I still want my car cleaned.

P.C. O'Donnell: Oh, for Christ's sake! Ain't you got any sense in your head? I'm trying to help you! You leave me no choice.

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: I'm sorry.

P.C. O'Donnell: You're under arrest!

Rheinlander Waldo: [refering to the anarchists in the library] Well, Mr. Elliot, why don't you go in and have a word with them?

Vernon Elliott: I beg your pardon?

Rheinlander Waldo: Just explain the value of the library, see what they want, that sort of thing.

Vernon Elliott: That hardly seems like the appropriate response, Mr. Waldo, and if you're making a joke at my expense, I assure you there's nothing amusing about my responsibilities as the curator of Mr. Morgan's library.

Rheinlander Waldo: Mr. Elliot, as long as those guys are in there, you're not curator of anything!

Booker T. Washington: [to Walker in the library] What you have done here has set our race back a distance I can't measure.

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: [while praying] Lord, why did you fill me with such rage?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: [praying] Lord, I'd hoped I'd have the courage to know what I should do now. You must see how sick at heart I've been... and how I've performed this thing with little appetite.


Coalhouse Walker Jr.: I'd hoped... you'd reveal to me along the way why you put such a rage in my heart.

[a brief pause]

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: Tell me what to do now!

[another beat]

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: Please.


Coalhouse Walker Jr.: God, tell me what to do.

Rheinlander Waldo: That library over there is worth millions and people keep telling me you're a piece of slime.

Evelyn Nesbit: This little piggy went wee weee wee wee all the way to the bank.

Sarah: [about Coalhouse] He say one thing, and then he say another thing. And he make it all sound so good. It ain't nuthin' but talk, Ma'am. It ain't nuthin' but talk!

Rheinlander Waldo: Where is J. P. Morgan?

Vernon Elliott: Oh, he's on an expedition down the Nile... in Egypt.

Rheinlander Waldo: Hmmm... Lucky him!

[Looks at the Captain]

Police Captain #1: Yes, sir!

Rheinlander Waldo: And contact some colored big shots to talk to us in case we need to negotiate.

Police Captain #1: Very good, sir. Anything else?

Rheinlander Waldo: Yeah, he said something about a car and a fire chief.

Police Captain #1: Conklin. Willie Conklin.

Rheinlander Waldo: Get him. I want to meet him.

Police Captain #2: Sir, that number doesn't answer. What do you want me to do?

Rheinlander Waldo: [after thinking about it for several moments] Get me some coffee and a roll.

[Coalhouse has just learned that his friends have safely escaped]

Father: [trepidatiously] Well, shouldn't we... uh... tell them... that we're... we're coming?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: [calmly] Yeah. You go on ahead. Tell 'em I'll be right out.

Father: [hesitates] Well...

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: Just go on. I'll be with you.

Father: [still hesitates] Don't...?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: [firmly] Go.

Father: [stammering] Don't you think it would be... a better idea if we...?

Coalhouse Walker Jr.: [exploding] GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE! Don't you understand ANYTHING, white man?

Father: [terrified, rushes out of the library]

See also

Trivia | Goofs | Crazy Credits | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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