Synopsis: An announcement that the venerable Bunker Hill Military Academy, a 141 year old institute, is to be torn down and replaced with condos sets off the young cadets led by their stodgy commander. Under the command of a student cadet major, the cadets seize the campus, refuse entry of the construction crews and ultimately confront the real military.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Harold Becker
Production: 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
Rotten Tomatoes:
126 min

... believeth all things,

hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Charity never faileth.

But whether there be prophecies,

they shall fail,

whether there be tongues,

they shall cease,

whether there be knowledge,

it shall vanish away.

For we know in part

and we prophesy in part,

but when that which is perfect is come,

then that which is in part shall be done away.

When I was a child, I spake as a child,

I understood as a child, I thought as a child.

But when I became a man,

I put away childish things.

For now we see through a glass darkly,

but then face to face.

Now I know in part, but then shall I know

even as also I am known.

And now abideth

faith, hope, charity, these three,

but the greatest of these is charity.

No call to arms has ever gone unheeded

by a graduate of Bunker Hill Academy.

In defence of our country and her principles,

many of our brothers

have nobly and selflessly

made the ultimate sacrifice.

To honour them, we will close

this baccalaureate service

as we close all services here,

by reading from the book of remembrance.

This will be the last reading

of the book for this year.

Williams, Robert S. Class of '60. Plei Ku.

Taps November 19, 1967.

Yancey, Scott A. Class of '45. Pork Chop Hill.

Taps April 26, 1953.

Young, Henry R. Class of '38. Omaha Beach.

Taps June 6, 1944.

Youngman, Clarence M. Class of '64. Plei Me.

Taps November 22, 1967.

Zimmerman, James J.

Class of '12. The Argonne.

Taps September 27, 1918.

Hey, yo, Jackie! Wait up!

McGonigle, Harry the Horse, class of '22.

Sing Sing Prison.

Give it a rest.

- Ferrilli, Rocky, class of '42.

- Give it a rest.

Lefty's Bar and Grill.

- Brian, Dungeons and Dragons tonight?

- Not tonight, Shawn.

Nice of you to ask.

Have a good day.

Billy, who are you

rooming with next summer?


- Carry on.

- Thank you, sir.

Larry, what troop are you in next year, D or F?

- Keep it down!

- I'm in F.

All right! I got into Company A!


Boy, I'm not gonna miss your socks...

- How's the T-shirt, Pigpen?

- Turn it out, Pigpen.


As you were, gentlemen.


Oh, God, thank you!

- Hey, Brian. You seen Shovel?

- Not since morning.

He got this summer care package

from his mother. One-way douche bag hid it.

The thing's the size of a Volkswagen.

Home-made fudge,

carrot cake, date nut bread.

I'm hot on the trail of that sucker.

When I see him, I'll...

Hey, Shovel!

Come here with that food!

Sorry, Hulk.

Want me to touch up your shoes, sir?

I mean, you won't want to go to the general's

with your shoes all grungy.

You know what

I'm gonna hate next year, Charlie?

- Breaking in a new plebe.

- Yeah.

Yes, sir.

Zen is no laughing matter.

- Yes, sir.

- Carry on.

Thank you, sir.

Four, five, six.

I can never hear that sequence of numbers

without feeling a rush in my blood.

The siege itself

was almost as bad as the assaults,

and the assaults were out of this world.

They kept coming at us, wave after wave.

Totally indifferent to casualties. The Chinese

always had plenty of bodies to spare.

They seemed to be fascinated

with our Springfield 1903.

The rifle our snipers used.

They called it the weapon of the silent death.

I wish I could remember that phrase

in Chinese. It was rather beautiful.

In battle, sir,

how do you keep from being scared?

You don't. My God, was I scared!

I must have lost about 20 pounds,

all of it brown!

But fear has a way

of providing you with a little bonus.

It gives you... the wolf.

The wolf?

It's a quotation from Theodore Roosevelt.

Let me see.

"All men who have felt the power

of the joy of battle

know what it's like

when the wolf rises in the heart."

He knew and I know

that man was meant to be a warrior.

We're all sons of our Viking fathers.

Try to eat a little something,

just to keep up appearances.

Otherwise I'll get an earache from Mrs Malloy.

It's delicious, sir.

I don't imagine I had much appetite

when I was appointed cadet major.

My God. Can't be 45 years ago.

Nobody's that old.

Wasn't General Black commander then, sir?

- General Black?

- Yes. Yes, General Black.

We cadets used to say

that his name described his heart.

But we respected the hell out of him.

He went the whole nine yards.

It didn't matter whether it was war

or growing roses or making men.

You know that picture of him

in the admin building?

When I was a plebe

it used to scare me walking under it.

That's why they hung it there.

The truth is you would have loved him

like a father. I know I did.

Speaking of fathers, Mr Moreland,

is your dad still at Fort Benning?

No, sir, he's at Fort Polk now.

Well, a good top sergeant

is worth his weight in gold.

I know many a colonel who's had

his ass saved by a clever sergeant.

Excuse me, Mrs Malloy.

I'm sure he's very proud of you, son.

- I hope he is, sir.

- Oh, thank you.

My doctor allows me one of these a day.

This is my third.

I wish I could tell you that there are more old

generals than old doctors, but it's not true.

Mrs Malloy, my officers and I

will have coffee and brandy in the study.


I'm afraid I can't vouch for the vintage,

but ultimately

it is the company that counts, isn't it?

So, what shall we drink to?

I tell you what. Let's drink

to the one thing that never changes.

To the one permanent part of a man's life.

- What's that, sir?

- Honour.

Honour, indeed.

Burglarproof, foolproof, weatherproof.

Everything else

is subject to the powers that be,

dependent upon the caprices

of often inferior men.

But your honour is your own, inviolate.

So, then. To honour.

- To honour.

- To honour.

Well, drink up. We have things to do.

Bunker Hill is rich in ceremony,

but this is an occasion

I always like to keep rather private,

when I say goodbye to one major

and appoint another in his place.

The cadet major

is outranked militarily only by me,

so that makes it a position

of some responsibility.

- You'll attest to that, won't you, Cooper?

- I'm afraid I can.

Captain Moreland, like your predecessor

you've distinguished yourself for a number

of years here as an underclassman.

And in recognition

of your scholarship and leadership,

your exemplary character,

I take pleasure in conferring upon you

the rank of cadet major

with all the responsibilities

and privileges of that rank.

Now, they'll respect the rank.

But God knows they won't

respect the man unless he earns it.

And the loyalty of men is always hard-earned.

- I'll do my best, sir.

- I have every confidence in you.

- Thank you, sir.

- Congratulations, Brian.

- Don't make me look too bad in comparison.

- Don't worry.

John, if you do half as well at West Point as

you have here, you'll make a splendid officer.

Thank you, sir. The credit would go to you.

If you wouldn't mind accompanying me

to the administration building,

I have my annual battle of the paperclips

with the board of trustees.

Entirely adequate.

Don't ask me what we had for dinner.

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Darryl Ponicsan

Darryl Ponicsan (; born May 26, 1938) is an American writer. He is best known as the author of the 1970 novel The Last Detail, which was adapted into a 1973 film starring Jack Nicholson. A sequel, Last Flag Flying, based on his 2005 novel of the same name, was released in 2017 and he also co-wrote the screenplay with Richard Linklater. He also wrote the 1973 novel and screenplay Cinderella Liberty, starring James Caan. Ponicsan writes mystery novels under the pen name Anne Argula. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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