Renaissance Man (1994)
Pvt. Donnie Benitez: [Sgt Cass has just ordered Benitez to recite Shakespeare] "He that shall live this day, and see old age, Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbors, And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian:' Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars. And say 'These wounds I had on Crispin's day.' Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot, But he'll remember with advantages What feats he did that day:
[the rest of the platoon gathers around]
Pvt. Donnie Benitez: then shall our names, Familiar in his mouth as household words Harry the king, Bedford and Exeter, Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester, Be in their flowing cups freshly remember'd. And this story shall the good man teach his son; And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, From this day to the ending of the world, But we in it shall be remember'd;
[Looking at the Double Ds]
Pvt. Donnie Benitez: We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; For he to-day that sheds his blood with me Shall be my brother.
[Looking back at the rest of the platoon]
Pvt. Donnie Benitez: And gentlemen in England now a-bed Shall think themselves accursed they were not here, And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks who fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day". That enough Drill Sergeant?
Sergeant Cass: [Quietly] Yes, Benitez. Good.
[Talking about Shakespeare to the class]
Bill Rago: He wrote plays. Plays...? You know, like TV without the box.
Bill Rago: All I know is, the choices we make dictate the life we lead. "To thine own self be true."
[reading about why they joined the Army]
Pvt. Tommy Lee Haywood: There's these woods behind our trailer park. This old guy lives in the woods there. Everybody in town swore he was crazy. He showed me how to hunt, and how to be real quiet, and how to listen. He said he had seen everythin' in the world he wanted to see, and he ain't never wanted to leave those woods. Well, me and my daddy got laid off at the paper mill, and whilst I spent about five months watchin' TV with my brothers, I kept thinkin' of what the old man said. Finally, I decided that I did want to see more of the world, and what was behind that trailer park. And that's why I joined up.
Private Miranda Myers: I liked livin' with my aunt, Mavis, in Chicago the best. But last summer, my mother, Ruthie, came back and we drove to Atlanta. She said, "We don't have to stay long," but then she met a man, and they take off. I waited around for a while, waitin' for her to come back, but everybody keep sayin', "Just go on home." I don't know where that is. So I take the bus to Cleaveland and spend two days starin' at the poster behind the driver sayin', "Be all you can be." So I think about that for a week, and think I gotta be somewhere, so here I am.
Pvt. Jamaal Mongomerey: In my crib, there ain't never been a time where we eat, sleep, or nothin'. Y'know, everybody just run around crazy. Half the time, I don't even know who we are. I must be the only person in the world who joined the army so he'd know exactly what time he'd be eating lunch.
Pvt. Roosevelt Nathaniel Hobbs: I wanted to learn a new trade.
Bill Rago: It says here that you're from Detroit. What part?
Pvt. Roosevelt Nathaniel Hobbs: The part you drive through doing 85.
Bill Rago: Been there.
Pvt. Roosevelt Nathaniel Hobbs: [voice over, while Bill is reading a letter from him] Dear Mr. Rago, Thanks for all your letters. And I don't know what you and Captain Murdoch wrote to the warden but it sure worked. Because I might be getting out of here soon. Just wanted you to know, I'm reading Othello. Imagine that. Mr. Shakespeare writing about a black man way back then, and a soldier too. Prison librarian says I'm the first to check out Shakespeare in 16 years. She asked me if I was interested in signing up for some college classes. I told her if they had a few teachers like you, I just might. Well, Mr. Rago, like Hamlet says, the rest is silence. Sincerely, Nathanial T Hobbs.
Soldiers: [chanting] Hamlet's mother, she's the queen / Buys it in the final scene / Drinks a glass of funky wine / Now she's Satan's Valentine.
Private Miranda Myers: I'd rather be a Double D than a swinger from the ugly tree, you fat pig.
Bill Rago: Hi. I'm Bill Rago. I've never taught before and you've never thought before. So good luck to all of us.
[another recruit is trying to bang a rhythm on his desk]
Private Miranda Myers: Give him time, give him time. He's a white boy.
[Melvin is reading a passage from HAMLET in a monotone voice]
Bill Rago: Melvin, read the rest of it when you come out of the coma.
Pvt. Jamaal Mongomerey: Bill, are you gonna translate this?
Bill Rago: Why? It's in English.
Soldier 1: You seen my green socks?
Soldier 2: We all got green socks.
Bill Rago: [about reading their essay] All right, who wants to start?
Bill Rago: Nobody?
Bill Rago: I thought this was the volunteer army...
Bill Rago: Write... why you're here.
Pvt. Donnie Benitez: This is where they told us to be.
Bill Rago: No, no. Write about the magical twist of fate that prompted you to gravitate towards this institute of imbeciles.
Pvt. Jamaal Mongomerey: [confused] What?
Bill Rago: [very nonchalantly] Write why you joined the Army.
Bill Rago: Now what's a Double D?
Pvt. Jamaal Montgomery: The whole fort calls us Double Ds.
Pvt. Donnie Benitez: Yeah - dumb as dog shit.
Bill Rago: Hamlet's mama, she's a queen.
Soldiers: Hamlet's mama, she's a queen.
Bill Rago: Buys it in the final scene.
Soldiers: Buys it in the final scene.
Bill Rago: Drinks a glass of funky wine.
Soldiers: Drinks a glass of funky wine.
Bill Rago: Now she's Satan's valentine.
Soldiers: Now she's Satan's valentine.
Bill Rago: Excuse me. Excuse me. I'm looking for the Army Education Center.
Bill Rago: Captain Tom Murdoch.
MP Directing Traffic: Captain Murdoch's not at the A.E.C. Captain Murdoch's at the A.R.C
Bill Rago: [fumbling to write down directions] A.R.C., A.E.C.
MP Directing Traffic: [Walks up to Rago] You lookin' for Captain Murdoch?
Bill Rago: Yeah.
MP Directing Traffic: The A.E.C. is building 2310. You want building 4475.
Bill Rago: 447...
MP Directing Traffic: Look, here's what you do. You go right here. Take another right at the P.X. Go half a click 'til you see the D.P.T.M. Center. Then take a left.
Bill Rago: [writing furiously] P.M., P.X.
MP Directing Traffic: If you hit the R.F.P.C., you've gone too far.
[returns to post]
Bill Rago: [reviewing notes] D.P.T.M., R.F.P.C.
Bill Rago: Can I buy a vowel?
Florist: Hey, excuse me, sir. I'm lookin' for the base chapel
Bill Rago: Base chapel?
Bill Rago: Go back around the curve 'til you reach the P.X. Ya hang a right. Ya come to that line A.P.C.s, ya turn left. Go half a click, ya come to the R.F.P.C. building. It's right around the back. Got it?
Florist: [confused] Yeah.
[Rago tells Leroy about Leon Battista Alberti, the archetypal "Renaissance Man."]
Bill Rago: But you know what I remember most about him?
Pvt. Jackson Leroy: No.
Bill Rago: They said that he could stand, with his feet together like this, and spring straight over a man's head.
Pvt. Jackson Leroy: [laughs] Really?
Bill Rago: If Leon Battista Alberti couldn't have done that, I wouldn't have remembered a thing about him.
Pvt. Jackson Leroy: So, wait... he was sort of like a smart jock, wasn't he?
Bill Rago: That's right.
Pvt. Jackson Leroy: Now there's an oxymoron, isn't it?
Bill Rago: You got it.