Waterloo (1970 film)

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Waterloo is a a 1970 Soviet-Italian film in which conqueror Napoleon Bonaparte and his army, facing the decline of everything he has worked to obtain, confront the British at the 1815 Battle of Waterloo.

Directed by Sergei Bondarchuk. Written by H.A.L. Craig, Sergei Bondarchuk, Vittorio Bonicelli, and Mario Soldati.
Waterloo. The battle that changed the face of the world.taglines

Field Marshall Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington[edit]

  • [to the Duchess of Richmond about arranging the ball] You really are the best of my generals.
  • [referring to his army] I don't know what they'll do to the enemy; but, by God, they frighten me.
  • [on Napolean's maneuver that split the English and Prussian armies] By God, that man does war honor.
  • [to a trumpeter, trying fruitlessly to recall the British cavalry] Stop that useless noise...! You'll hurt yourself.
  • Give me night, or give me Blücher.
  • Next to a battle lost, there's nothing so melancholy as a battle won.

Emperor Napoleon I of France[edit]

  • Never interrupt your enemy while he's making a mistake. That's bad manners.
  • [thinks to himself, about Wellington] This Englishman has two qualities I admire: caution, and above all, courage.
  • I can't believe my ears. You all stand before me, waving a piece of paper, crying 'abdicate, abdicate!' I WILL NOT!!! I WILL NOT, NOT, NOT!!!
  • Soldiers of the 5th, do you recognise me? If... you want to kill your Emperor... here I am. [pause] FIRE!
  • [dictating a letter] To my dear Prince Alexis... I did not "usurp" the crown. I found it, in the gutter, and I, I picked it up with my sword, and it was the people, Alexis, the people who put it on my head. He who saves a nation violates no law.
  • I am France, and France is me!
  • I've been in this position before at the Battle of Marengo. I lost the battle at five o'clock, but I won it back again at seven!

Marshal Michel Ney[edit]

  • [attempting to rally the Imperial Guard] Up to them. Up to them! Do I fight alone? Are you French? Fight with me! Are you the Guard? Stand with me! Do you know me? I am Ney! Ney, Marshal of France!

Field Marshall Gebhard von Blücher[edit]

  • [launching his attack on the French right] Raise high the black flags, children. No pity. No prisoners. I'll shoot any man I see with pity in him. Forward!


Napoleon Bonaparte: Well they've done it! The whole of Europe has declared war against me! Not against France, but against me.
Le Bedoyere: They dignify you sire by making you a Nation!
Napoleon Bonaparte: [laughing] Dignify? Dignify? They deny me the decency of law! They make it legal that any clown can kill me.
Michel Ney: Well we've fought with mud in our boots before!
Napoleon Bonaparte: Yes well, I'll discuss peace over Wellington's dead body, that's my peace table!

King Louis XVIII: I know you loved this man.
Michel Ney: I did, once. But I promise you, that I will bring him back to Paris in an iron cage. [exits]
King Louis XVIII: How they exaggerate, these soldiers, "In an iron cage"? Nobody asked for that.

Lord Uxbridge: [clears throat] Sir.
Duke of Wellington: [removing his copy of The Times from over his face] Ah, Uxbridge.
Lord Uxbridge: As I am second-in-command and in case anything should happen to you, what are your plans?
Duke of Wellington: [brightly] To beat the French. [goes back to sleep, replacing the newspaper over his head]

Napoleon Bonaparte: Cross the river. Tomorrow we will dry our boots in Brussels.
Michel Ney: God willing, sire.
Napoleon Bonaparte: God? God has nothing to do with it.

Duchess of Richmond: [referring to the English troops] They're the salt of England, Arthur.
Duke of Wellington: Scum. Nothing but beggars and scoundrels, all of them. Gin is the spirit of their patriotism.
Duchess of Richmond: Yet you expect them to die for you?
Duke of Wellington: Um-hum.
Duchess of Richmond: Out of duty?
Duke of Wellington: Um-hum.
Duchess of Richmond: I doubt if even Bonaparte could draw men to him by duty.
Duke of Wellington: Oh, Boney's not a gentleman.
Duchess of Richmond: Arthur! What an Englishman you are.
Duke of Wellington: On the field of battle his hat is worth fifty thousand men; but he is not a gentleman.

Napoleon Bonaparte: When I am dead and gone what will the world say of me?
Le Bedoyere: They'll say that you extended the limits of glory, sire.
Napoleon Bonaparte: The limits of glory'; is that all I have to leave to my son, the 'limits of glory'?

Napoleon Bonaparte: Le Bedoyere, do you have any children?
Le Bedoyere: Yes, sire; one son, very young, no taller than your boot.
Napoleon Bonaparte: And if he were with you, would you want him with you here today?
Le Bedoyere: Yes, sire.
Napoleon Bonaparte: Yes, why?
Le Bedoyere: So he could see you, sire.
Napoleon Bonaparte: See me? You know, I have a son. I'd give anything in the world to see him. I'd give my heart, I'd give my life, but not here. I wouldn't want him to witness this battle here today.

[before the battle starts, the British troops are singing a mocking song about Napoleon]
William De Lancey: Shall I shut them up, Sir?
Duke of Wellington: No, no, indulge it . Anything that wastes time is good. Indulge it. Normally I don't like cheering, but there's always a time to cut cards with the Devil.

Duke of Wellington: The whole line will advance.
Lord Uxbridge: In which direction your grace?
Duke of Wellington: Why, straight ahead to be sure.

Michel Ney: Wellington's on the run! I caught him at Quatre Bras! He's retreating!
Napoleon Bonaparte: If Wellington's retreating, what are you doing here?
Michel Ney: But, Sire...
Napoleon Bonaparte: If Wellington's retreating, what are you doing here? Why didn't you follow him? Why didn't you pursue?
Michel Ney: [Raises voice] where are the reinforcements you promised me?
Napoleon Bonaparte: [shouting] Don't you dare criticize me! Don't you dare! Don't you see if Wellington's free to choose his ground then everything I've won in this campaign you've lost!

British artillery commander: Sir, Napoleon has ventured within range. May I have your permission to try a shot?
Duke of Wellington: [stares at him a moment] Certainly not! Leaders of armies have better things to do than fire at each other.

[after a cannon shot has landed near the Duke of Wellington and the Earl of Uxbridge]
Lord Uxbridge: By God sir, I've lost my leg.
Duke of Wellington: By God sir, so you have.

[as the Old Guard advances]
Officer: Sire! The Prussians are in the woods! Blücher is in the woods!
Napoleon Bonaparte: If I made one mistake in my life, I should have burned Berlin.


  • Waterloo. The battle that changed the face of the world.
  • The Men, the Battle, The Glory, The World Will Remember Forever


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