The Patriot

The Patriot

A 2000 film starring Mel Gibson, depicting an American who enters the American Revolutionary War when his sons are threatened. Directed by Roland Emmerich and written by Robert Rodat.

What would you do if they destroyed your home, threatened your family. Where would you draw the line?
Before they were soldiers, they were family. Before they were legends, they were heroes. Before there was a nation, there was a fight for freedom.
Some things are worth fighting for.

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
Now we come to the matter of specific targeting of officers during engagements. You must know that in civilized warfare, officers in the field must not be accorded inappropriate levels of hostile attention.

Benjamin Martin:
To your opinion, what are appropriate levels of hostile attention?

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
Colonel, imagine the utter chaos that would follow from leaderless armies having at each other. There must be gentlemen to command, lead, and- and, where necessary, restrain their men.

Benjamin Martin:
Restrain them from, say, targeting civilians. Women, children and such.

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
That's a separate issue.

Benjamin Martin:
No, no. I consider them linked. And as long as your soldiers attack civilians, I will order the shooting of officers at every engagement. And my men are excellent marksmen.

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
Very well. Let us move on to...

Benjamin Martin:
Prisoner exchange.

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:

Benjamin Martin:
You have eighteen of my men. I want them back.

[Visibly confused, General Cornwallis turns to General O'Hara, who whispers to him.]

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
I-I hold eighteen criminals under sentence of death, but I hold no prisoners of war.

Benjamin Martin:
If that's your position, eighteen of your officers will have to die. Nineteen, if you hang me with them.

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
My officers?

[Martin gets up, taking a field telescope off the General's desk. He looks out the window behind him, and hands the device to Cornwallis.]

Benjamin Martin:
Top of the ridge, to your left. Just below the tree line.

[General Cornwallis looks, and locates what appears to be a group of British officers held at gunpoint by Colonial militia.]

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
Their names and ranks?

Benjamin Martin:
They refuse to give me their names, but the ranks are nine lieutenants, five captains, three majors, and one very fat colonel who called me a "cheeky fellow."

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
You know this is not the conduct of a gentleman.

Benjamin Martin:
If the conduct of your officers is the measure of a gentleman, I'll take that as a compliment. [Pauses] Get my men.

Lieutenant General Cornwallis:
[To O'Hara] Arrange the exchange.

Brigadier General O'Hara:
My lord.

Share your thoughts on The Patriot's quotes with the community:

  • tomj.93272
    One of my most favorite movies
    LikeReply1 year ago
  • Pegotty Cooper
    Pegotty Cooper
    Missing the most important quote about hoping that all the loss was worth the sacrifice. Thought it would be a good quote for these times.
    LikeReply3 years ago

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