Private Benjamin

Synopsis: When her husband dies on their wedding night, Judy decides to join the United States Army. She realizes that she has never been independent in her entire life. What looks like a bad decision at first, turns out not so bad at all. That is, until her superior officer makes sexual advances on her. She has been transferred to NATO headquarters in Europe and (re)meets the Frenchman Henri Tremont. Judy and Henri decide to marry, but will they?
Genre: Comedy, War
Director(s): Howard Zieff
Production: Warner Bros. Pictures
  Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 3 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
109 min

When Judy Benjamin was 8, she told her

best friend her life's desire.

"All I want," Judy whispered,

"is a big house...

...nice clothes, a maid and a

professional man for a husband."

Today, all of Judy's dreams come true.

With this ring be thou consecrated

unto me as my wife.

According to the law of Moses

and faith of Israel.

According to the law of Moses

and faith of Israel.

And you, Judy,

say to Yale these words.

Take the ring.

This ring is a symbol

that you are my husband.

This ring is a symbol

that you are my husband.

And a sign of my love and devotion.

And a sign of my love and devotion.

In the presence of these witnesses... spoke words

and performed the rites...

...which unite your lives.

I therefore declare you,

Yale and Judy...

...husband and wife.

Step on it.

Mazel tov!


But I only have eyes

For you

Judy Goodman

Do you have a date?

No, I told your Uncle Phil

I'd meet him to look at his lease.

- You're not going to work now?

- No, I'm not going to work.

He thinks he's getting evicted.

Let me just talk to him.


- Thanks for marrying me.

- You're welcome.

Get me a Perrier with a twist?

- Arnie!

- So you did it, huh?

I can't believe you married Goodman...

...when you could've had me.

I could have lived with you, Arnie.

Big difference.


Look who I found!

Mr. Waxman, the upholsterer.

I didn't recognize you

without nails in your mouth.

I brought a little something

I think you're going to love.

Mr. Waxman, you finished the ottoman!

Yale will be thrilled.

Wait a minute!

Is this mushroom piping?

Looks beige-y to me, Ma.

This isn't the right color, is it?


...what happened to the mushroom?

That's as close as you're going

to get to mushroom in Philadelphia.

Mr. Waxman, we've been

through this a zillion times.

I told you I'm doing Yale's study

in mushroom.

I'm sure you could've found

a yard of mushroom fabric.

You want it, I'll get it.

This is your night!


Mr. Waxman, I wanted upholstered balls.

Upholstered balls?

- Come on, Peanut.

- Where're we going?

- My feet hurt.

- Your feet will be fine.

I just want to talk to you.

What? Want a divorce already?

Darling, I have a very bad headache.

No wonder, you've danced all night.

I'll get some Tylenol from Mom.

Sweetheart...'s not a Tylenol headache.

- Honey!

- Please?

- Honey, not here!

- Please, why not? Come on!

Why? Because everybody

I know is ten feet away.

- They're having a good time. Please?

- No, I'll ruin my dress.

- Your dress is fine. Come on!

- Honey, please? I don't want to.

Kiss me first.

I love you so much.

Hi, Yale.

Judy's always been

a good girl. Always!

She made a mistake

with the first husband.

That's ancient history. The smartest

thing she ever did was to marry you.

That's nice, Teddy.

It's very important

for a father to know...

...his daughter's going to be

well taken care of. Don't laugh!

You'll know what I mean

when your daughter gets married.

Anyway, that's number one.

Number two!

We'll still have Sunday breakfasts?

- Of course, Daddy.

- Good.

You can get the whitefish

on your way over.

I want to give you two

a little something from mother and me...

...a little extra happiness.

I guess it's not

carpeting for the living room.

That's for the future, not

Lord and Taylor, you little jerk!

Teddy, you're amazing!

It's my pleasure.

Just use it in good health.

Thanks, Mom.

I'll show my mother,

she'll go crazy!

I can't believe it!

Jude, get me a cigarette.

Coming back inside, Daddy?

I just want to see the recap

of tonight's game.

Should I wait for you here?


Get me a match, doll.

Jerry, if you call her you'll

screw it up. That's my job, all right?

No, to call her.

How long you married? Anything more

than 15 years, you lose the house.

It's not my rule,

that's just the way it is.

Keep the boat, it's a male item.

Prenups is the only way

to get around this and it's too late.

Give her the microwave,

it's a built-in!

It comes with the house.

What'll you do with one oven?

It's late now.

30 a.m. Monday...

...we'll play racquetball. We'll

figure it out then. Can you wait?

We'll be in Jamaica

30 Monday.

I'll be on my honeymoon Monday.

I'll call you from Jamaica.

I don't know, from the hotel.

No, you'll be halved at worst.

You're okay.

Prenups, babe!

- That'll never happen to us.

- I know.

- Did this bathroom turn out gorgeous?

- This ass is gorgeous.

Come here.

- What?

- Wait, honey.

Wait just one second.

- Lift your back leg.

- I don't have a back leg.

It's our wedding night. It's not

real romantic making love in the sink.

- It's romantic making love anywhere.

- I know. I love you.

- Let's go into the bedroom.

- We're going into the bedroom next.

Just here. Good, sweetie!

Honey, good!

You're on my hair,

get off my hair.

How's that?

- Oh, honey!

- What?

- Oh, sweetie!

- What?

I'm coming!

Why don't we go and get in bed?

Oh, God, full of compassion,

thou who dwellest on high.

Grant perfect rest unto

the soul of Yale Goodman...

...who has departed from this world.

Lord of mercy, bring him

into Thy presence...

...and let his soul be bound up

in the bond of eternal life.


I can't try to console you... saying there is

any justice in this world.

Just be thankful for the friendship...

Rate this script:5.0 / 1 vote

Nancy Meyers

Nancy Jane Meyers (born December 8, 1949) is an American film director, producer and screenwriter. She is the writer, producer and director of several big-screen successes, including The Parent Trap (1998), What Women Want (2000), Something's Gotta Give (2003), The Holiday (2006), It's Complicated (2009) and The Intern (2015). more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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