Tank (1984) Script

I can't believe they don't have one good rock station.

Are you kidding me, boy? That's stompin' music.

This will be our last post. So let's just tough it out.

Morning. Sergeant major Zack Carey.

Morning, sergeant major. Welcome to fort Clemmons.

Is this all yours? Personal belongings.

Never said I travel light soldier.

Oh, put it on that side.

Sergeant major Carey!

Sergeant major Carey! Yeah, you calling me?

Sergeant major Carey? Yeah, that’s me.

I'm Jerry Elliott from soldier magazine.

We'd like to interview you, and take a few pictures, if that would be alright.

I just got here myself Elliott.

How the hell did you guys find me so quick?

You aren't exactly the unknown soldier in this army.

What's a soldier's magazine's interest in interviewing me?

Well sergeant major, you're the only one in the U.S. army Who owns his own fully operational sherman tank for one thing Are you kidding me? I thought everybody had one of these.

I knew a sergeant in Ft. Bliss who made a lamp out of one.

How long did it take you to restore it?

Oh…close to 15 years.

Spare part here, spare part there.

Did it mostly with my two sons on weekends. How old are your sons?

Well, Billy, he's 16, And Jonathan... Would be 22.

He's dead.

I'm sorry to hear that.

Is this tank all original?

Everything except the loudspeaker and tape deck. I put those in for parades and such.

That way, it could be declared a public relations asset.

Why in the hell would anybody want a sherman tank?

Because it's very hard to shoot yourself while cleaning it.

One, two, three, four, hey!

One, two, three, four, hey!

This is the way we start our day!

This is the way we start our day!

Knockin' down doors and kickin' down walls!

Knockin' down doors and kickin' down walls!

Yes. General Hubik, Sergeant major Carey to see you sir.

Great. Send him in.

Reporting for duty, sir.

Good to see you, general.

Well, well, for an old fart, you look great.

With your permission, I could say the same about you.

How's Ladonna?

Fine, sir. And your wife?

She has her moments. All squared away?

Just about.

There's a staff sergeant named Elliott running around looking for you.

He already found me, sir.

He got me before I had a chance to test the latrines in this installation.

We're going for a drive.

You're creating quite a stir with that tank of yours.

I had to pull quite a few strings to let you keep it here.

I appreciate that, sir. If I may say so, I'm glad my last assignment is going to be under you, sir.

We're both a little too young to be talking about last assignments.

Yes, sir, but I have made an offer on a fishing boat.

If they accept it, I'll put in my papers.

You give me two years on this post Zach, And you just may very well be the next sergeant major of the army.

General Hubik, I can't tell you how much I appreciate that coming from you, But it gets a little complicated.

I only have one son left.

He's only got a few more years at home.

That time won't ever come again. I've learned anything, I’ve learned that sir.

Well, there'll be time to talk about that later.

Pentagon duty isn't half bad for a family.

Neither is fishing, sir.

In your hat, sergeant major.

Yes, sir, general sir, three bags full.

Road guard, recover!



I've talked with your mom and dad.

What about you?

What's it like Having a command sergeant major for a father?

Made me more religious I suppose.

Really? How's that?

Made me more aware of the problems Jesus must have had as a teenager.

Being the son of God.

What sort of father is your dad?

A cross between George Patton and Danny Thomas.

I mean like he says, “Shit rolls downhill…”

“..and if it's a bad day at the post,”

“..you better believe it's the wrong day to look like a ragbag around the house."

You call that guy about the boat?


You didn't tell me. You didn't ask me.

Shouldn’t have to ask you something like that, jesus it’s like pulling teeth to get any information out of you.

What did the guy say say? He said he’d call back in a couple of weeks and let us know if they’ll take our offer or not.

Probably waiting to see if they can get more.

I just hope the interest rates don't go up by then. What if they do?

They won't go up. What if they do?

What am I supposed to do? Just go in there and tell them

“They can’t do that because Ladonna Carey said that the interest rate won’t go up?” I swear to Jesus you’re about as nervous about that boat as you are about that tank.

Go to the NCO club, have a beer. See if we know anybody on this post.

You're a pretty good old broad.

Just watch who you're calling old.

Jesus, you're a nervous old woman.

Give me a bud.


Give me a beer!

Hey, Carey!


Hi, Tippet. Hey how you been? Good to see you.

What they got you doing here?

I'm operations NCO with the provost marshal.

How's yourself? I'm good. You look good.

Look, I want you to meet my wife. Christ, I know Linda.

Uh... No, no. Big mistake.

Linda is the old wife. New wife is Gwen.

Must not make the mistake of calling new wife old wife's name.

She'll be upside your head with a pool cue.

Hi. See anybody we know?

Ed Tippet.

Oh yeah? Was Linda there too?

No, but Gwen was. Who's Gwen?

Gwen is new wife. Linda is old wife.

They got divorced?

I guess so.

Christ, I used to love to go to the NCO Club.

Not anymore.

Not unless you like to sit around on your can and play bingo, Or go to the disco and dance the funky monkey, Or whatever they call that stuff they’re blaring in there.

They don't even call them bars anymore.

It’s gotta be a disco. I don't want to go to a disco.

I want to go to a bar.

You're acting like the most crotchety old bugger I've ever seen in my life.

Why don’t you get in this bed and I'll show you just how young you really are.

Why, miss Scarlett, how you do talk.

I just want to get that boat. I want to finish things up And get on that boat, that's all.

Hey. Hey, what?

G.I. Want a good piece of ass?

I love you.

You better.

Gentlemen, the division sergeant major.

At ease.

Who’s this guy? Is he some kinda hard-ass?

He’s one of these guys went in at 16, something like that. Probably got a wino to sign for him.

I got a wino to sign for me too. After he did, I said, "thanks, dad."

You still had to buy him a bottle of booze, didn’t ya?

Gentlemen, be seated.

My name is sergeant major Zack Carey.

I usually find these little chats are about as full of crap as a Christmas goose, so I'll keep it as short as possible.

Gentlemen, the bottom line is we’re gonna get our collective shit together.

We’re gonna make this outfit combat-ready.

Coming over here today, I saw a couple of individuals on this installation walking around looking like a ragbag.

That stops now.

Normally, if I was a battalion sergeant major, company first sergeant, Some clown starts telling me how to run my people, I'm gonna personally tell him to keep his nose out of my business.

But these are not normal times, So I will park in your pockets gentlemen.

Where quality of training is concerned, there are going to be more details later.

Where quality of life is concerned, We will take care of our people's problems.

Whatever it takes to keep our people's minds on their work, and not their personal problems, that's what we’re going to do.

For me, at least, the army is family.

We will take care of our own By the book, but with tact...

And by tact I mean don't let the bullshit reach the brass.

We will handle our problems in-house.

Because when a problem leaves your hands, and reaches

your company or battalion commander's hands, You better believe it’s going to come to the attention of that 600-pound gorilla With the two stars on his collar.

And shit rolls downhill.

Keep that gorilla off my back, That'll keep me off yours.

Now there’s one other thing. I want a beer bar on this post with a soft jukebox So old farts like me, and a few others out there can sip our suds in peace And not have to dance the funky monkey.

That’s it for now, thank you, gentlemen.

Your division sergeant major, is all alone on the battalion field!

Morning, sergeant major. And a fine one it is.

Would you and your men care to take the air with me?

It would be the highlight of our day.


Company, right face!

Forward battalion, march! Hoo!

Column left, march!

Double time!

I'm gonna rock the livin' day!

Shake, rattle, and roll, everybody!

Shake, rattle, and roll, everybody!

Shake, shake, shake a little longer!

Shake, rattle, and roll, hey!

Pick 'em up! Set 'em down!

Rock it! All right!

Here we go!

Bye, mom.


Billy! Ladonna! We did it!

What’s going on? Why don’t you help me with some of these grocery bags.

Grocery bags? Lady, do you have any idea who you're talking to?

We got the boat? You better believe we got the boat.

Broker just called, said they took our offer, locked in at the same rate.


What do you say we just forget about that ham in the oven And have a real celebration, just you and me?

That ham isn't for us, I told you I have the NCO wives' club meeting here tonight.

I told you that, you said you'd eat out.

Christ LaDonna, screw the NCO wives.

Let's go celebrate. I can't do that, they're coming here, I can't do it.

Hells bells LaDona, best news I've had in 10 years, Billy's out on a date, And you've got that crew of Amazons!

I told you five times they were comin' here tonight.

Why don't you have dinner in town?

One of these days, I'll go to beautician school.

I did all my girlfriends' hair in high school.


Maybe I'll go to California.

I heard about this girl in playboy ya know? She had her very own barber shop.

That's what I want, my own place.

No crap from nobody.

I'll drink to that, to no more crap.

Maybe that's what I'll name my boat - the no more crap.

Maybe I'll just name it after you. Sarah.

That's it. The Sarah.

Long may she sail.

The Sarah.

I've been in the army almost 30 years.

'Bout time I went Navy.

How would you like to hear a song?

Gonna play the jukebox?

No I'm not gonna play the jukebox, I'm gonna give you a rare priveledge.

And a treat. I'm gonna sing you an old sea shanty In the key of z-flat.

* when I was a little boy *

* so my mother told me *

* way, haul away

* we'll haul away, Joe

* if I did not kiss the girls *

* my lips would grow all moldy *

* way, haul away

* we'll haul away, Joe Come on, shoot the ball.

How much have I made off you already?

* way, haul away Christ, I'm making 40 bucks an hour.

* away, Joe. Then he got... *

Shoot the ball.


Why don't you just shut up from here on out, ya hear?

I'll bust your head.


You wanna cut out that warbling? Can't you see there's a game going on?

Aw well, I'm sorry about that, deputy, I apologize.

Bad manners to be singing while there's a game going on.

C'mon over, I'll buy you a beer.

I don't need you to buy me no beer.

And you Sarah, you're supposed to be turning tricks, girl.

You've wasted enough time on this old boy.

Probably couldn't get it up anyway.

So you just get your ass up off that barstool bitch and start earning some money.

Hey hey hey, you don't want to do that.

Say what?

There's no need for that, that's all.

I'll tell you what there ain't no need for. Ain't no need for no army scumbag To come up here and tell me what to do in my town, with my whore.

You know something deputy?

You're right. You're just as right as rain.

Your town, your whore.

Is that right?

You proved your point.

Deputy, let me ask you a question.

How would you like it if someone went...

He's got the gun!

Why did you have to go and do that?

He only slapped me around a little.

I could have lost my job, asshole!

No need to get sentimental about it.

A simple "thank you" would do.

All right, I'm coming, I'm coming.

What the hell is all that racket?


What's the problem man? It's 2:00 in the morning.

We got to talk Ed.

I did an El dummo. I'll admit it.

I been in enough of these cracker towns, I'll bet you dollars to doughnuts the local constabulary will be in provost marshal's office in the morning Looking to stick my ass in jail.

You gonna pay for the damages?

Well sure, sure. I'll pay the guy as much as 500 to cool things out.

You might have to go higher than that.

The sheriff's a mean cracker.

Morning, sheriff.

Good morning.

Would you all like some coffee?

Thank you kindly. I believe I would.

In my office, please, Euclid.

Yes, sir.


Yes, sir?

Where is he?

Who's that, sheriff?

He's not in my jail.

And I don't see no arrest report.

On who, sir?

He in the hospital?

I'd like to believe that's the case.

Um... Sheriff...

I... Uh...

Or is he in the morgue?

But if he's in the morgue, there ought to be a report in here on him.

Don't you care about your paperwork Euclid?

Sheriff, I'm not, uh...

Not really sure what you mean sir.

Well, look at your face, son.

Somebody marked up your face when you was on duty, and when on duty, you represent me.

Yes, sir.

Now who was it that marked you up while you was out representing me?

Because now I'm walkin' around with marks on my face, and that, I can't have.

Spell me.

He's out there, I saw it, big as life.

Well, Jesus Christ!

That son of a bitch has got a hell of a nerve.

Jesus Christ on a crutch!

Hell! That's just a breach of professional etiquette.

Coming into my mess hall, without calling me?

Pulling some kind of surprise inspection, in my kitchen without letting me know he's comin'?

It's just a breach of professional etiquette.

That fool think I'm playing, he got another thing comin'.

I'm gonna get me a meat cleaver.

I'll breach that mother's skull.

Sergeant major Carey?

This is a breach of etiquette, you understand?

I don't have to take this off of nobody.

This is my mess hall, and you keep your nose out of my business.

27 years I've been running mess halls.

Dwight D. Eisenhower ate my cooking, and I don't stand for no surprise inspections from anybody.

Sergeant, I came in here because the food smelled good, I wanted to eat with soldiers, Not over at the NCO Country club.

The food's excellent. Our food is excellent.

Place is clean. I run a clean mess hall.

Service is good, nobody slops the food on the plate.

Served with pride, respect.

Nobody slop my food, I'll slop them upside the head!

You're doing an excellent job sergeant, my compliments to you and your entire staff.

You taste that apple cobbler?

I was just getting ready to do that. well, you gonna talk about my food, you taste that apple cobbler.

Then you talk about the food.

Sergeant. Yeah?

That's the best fucking apple cobbler I ever tasted.

Give that man some seconds!

Morning, Sarah.

Morning, sheriff.

Sarah, do you believe in Wonder Woman?


Wonder woman, you know. Like on the TV. Do you believe in Wonder Woman?

No, sir.

Well, now, that's good.

But how about the Lone Ranger?

Do you think there's really a Lone Ranger, like they have in the comic books?

Sheriff, I don't know what you're talking about.

Would you just answer the question, sister Sarah.

Do you believe in the Lone Ranger?

No, sir.

Ah, liar, liar, pants on fire!

You do believe in the Lone Ranger, and you think he wears army green, and that's a dangerous thing for a lady in your position, ya think?

You see Sarah, you do business with them people, of course.

But that's all.

You don't get personal with them.

Cause they ain't our kind.

That's a lesson you're gonna have to learn little lady. You got to learn it good.


Pull up your little shirt there.

Take down the drawers.

Turn over. Get to it.

I'm going to teach you That there really and truly, ain't no Lone Ranger.

I got this one.

I'd like to see the provost marshal.

Good morning sheriff. He's not in right now, maybe I can help you.

Well, maybe you can.

I don't know who he is, but I bet you do.

He's a sergeant. Master sergeant, or some such thing.

First name's Zack.

He's wanted for battery on one of my deputies last night, D&D, and whatever else I can think of.

There's no need to look no further sheriff, cause we got him. That's good, cause I want him.

Can't. He turned himself in to the MP's last night.

He's gonna be one sorry sergeant major when we get through with him.

Uh, in the meantime, if you just tell me how much he has to pay for damages and all… He'll pay, all right.

But first, he's gonna spend some time in my jail.

Ya know sheriff, it's lucky you and me got a chance to talk.

I'm just gonna save you all kinds of paperwork.

I'm sure you're aware of the recent supreme court decision, Uh, Clarence versus Kern county, where the high court ruled that all military personnel, committing a crime in civilian jurisdiction...

I don't want to hear this supreme court crap!

I want that son of a bitch.

I want his name I can put on a warrant. I want him here so I can take him to my jail.

Now do you understand that, boy?

Yes, sir.

Yes sir, I sure do.

The military don't want no trouble for your town.

I'll have that man up here for you in 15 minutes.

Now that's what I like to hear.

Because if you want that man that bad, You got a bad problem, we just got to nip it right in the bud.

Well I don't see you making any calls to locate my man.

I'll have that son of a bitch up here for you in 12 minutes, with cuffs on behind his back.

Will that about do it for you? It'll be fine if you get to doin it.

And by 5:00 this afternoon, that whole town of yours will be declared off-limits, to all military personnel.

Cause we sure don't want you to have any problems with the army so, you take him, go ahead and take him.

And by 5 o'clock you won't have to worry about seeing soldiers in any of your bars, or your restaurants, or your stores, or your whorehouses.

If that don't cure your problem, I don't know what will.

Okay, sambo. You win this one.

There's more than one way to skin a cat.

You better believe there is, Jim.

Oh by the way...

You best watch how you drive off this post.

Cause this is a federal installation.

You break the speed limit here, you'll be spending time in my jail.


I want to know everything there is to know about that sergeant major.

I want it all, and I want it today.

Hold him still.

It's ok, it's going to be ok.

Daddy's not mad at you anymore.

It's okay, Brian.

Come in.

Corporal Harris reporting sergeant major. You wanted to see me?

Sit down, corporal.

I was over at the post hospital today, I saw your son.

He's pretty badly beat up. Did you do it?

As much as I know about the army sir, that's none of your business.

If you want I can call in the provost marshall, but...

Call the provost, nobody's pressing any charges.

Hey, corporal, I'm just having a personal chat with you, you want to make it hard? I'll make it hard.

Now, I'm trying to keep this inside this office, but you're being dumb.

Well, fine then. Let's just keep it in the office.

I know you got your wife and kids scared they won't file out a complaint.

Well, sooner or later, that's going to blow up in your face.

I just don't want it to ever get to that point.

We got good counseling on this post.

I want you to volunteer for some. Nobody will know about it.

I'll keep this quiet as possible.

But you need some help, son. Is that it?

You're not going for it?

Am I dismissed?

Let me put it to you another way.

The next time you feel like you're losing control, and want to hit somebody, you come see me. You come hit me.

We can go over to the gym, put on the gloves or we can just duke it out...

Look. What goes on in my family is my business!

It's not your goddamn...

Now you hear this, asshole!

I'm gonna check that hospital every day.

If that boy's ever in there again with a mark on him, I will destroy you.

My retirement won't mean shit to me, my stripes won't mean shit to me, The stockade won't mean shit to me.

I'll destroy you in a heartbeat!

Do you believe that? Do you?

Yes, sergeant major.

You will get some counseling. Dismissed!

Hi, bill.

Hi, dad.

Where's your mom? Shopping, I guess.

You're cracking the books a little early, aren't you?

I've got basketball practice and an early date.

Smells like mom's cooking up a pretty good dinner.

Did you check that early date out with her?

Yeah, I told her this morning.

Think you'll miss some pretty good ham, son.

Oh, Christ.

I'm getting too old for it.

For ham?

No, all the bullshit.

I had a clown in my office today, Beat up his kid. 5-year-old boy.

Could've broken his neck.

When you think about people, raise a kid right, then he gets killed, and you see something like that.

Turns your stomach.

Dad? I was thinking.

If we get that boat, maybe we could call it Johnny boy, or something like that. How about we do that?

I don't need a boat to remind me of your brother.

I just thought it'd be kinda nice, since he was your favorite and all.

Wait. You want to run that by me one more time?

Not really.

Bill... Come over here.

Come over and sit down.

Billy, do you ever think that I wish it was you, instead of your brother that was dead?

That question sucks dad. Yes, it does.

It'd be rotten if you felt that way, and it wouldn't be true.

Johnny was your first-born.

It's only natural you and mom would feel something more for him.

Makes sense, doesn't it? No, it doesn't.

We felt something different for him, cause he was a different person, but not anything more or better.

Mom always said you and Johnny were exactly alike.

You had to feel something more.

We were alot alike. That's why when he was a little boy we got along so well But when he got to be a teenager, not so much.

He always felt he had to prove things to me.

Maybe that's why he got killed.

But I swear to you Bill. Not once, not ever for one second Did I wish it was you instead of him that got it.

You straight on that?

Yes, sir.

I got to go.


You squared away on all that?

Yes, sir.

Break it up!

William Carey!

Yes, sir?

Mr. Taylor would like to speak to you.

I don't understand Mr. Taylor. Why do you want to see my locker?

Well, it might be nothing at all Billy, It's just something we want to check out.

Billy, these two men are deputy sheriffs.

They'd like to ask you some questions.

Is this your locker?

Yes, sir.

Want to open it up please?

That's not my lock.

Just open the locker.

That's not my lock.

Honest Mr. Taylor, that's not my lock.

Can someone please tell me what's going on here?

Billy, the sheriff's office has received some reports That you've been selling marijuana on the campus.

But that's not true!

Would you ask the janitor to open that locker please?

Go ahead.

Excuse me.

Well, well, well.

Lookee what we got here.

I'd like to see the sheriff, please.

Well, right this way there, general.

Right this way.

Someone to see you, sheriff.


Sheriff says okay.

Well, sheriff, uh...


My name is Zack Carey.

I did a real dumb thing in your town the other night, Then tried to weasel out of it.

I'm sorry. You win, I lose.

Now, what do I have to do to get my son back?

Euclid, could you come in here and bring your camera please?

You wouldn't mind posin' for a picture with me, would you?

If not, sergeant, Back over against that wall.

Right over here.

You see, Euclid's never seen a talking asshole before, And I'd like him to have a souvenir photo of it.

All right, euclid.

I think I'll call this, "Sheriff buelton gets his man,"

Unless you got a better idea.

Well, let's see what we got here, sergeant.

"William Carey...

"Possession of narcotics, "Possession with intent to sell same, "Assaulting a peace officer, and resisting arrest. "

Now, if I know the judge...

I reckon I ought to know him, he's my brother-in-law...

This would be enough to get that little boy of yours at least two years on the county farm, maybe three.

All right, sheriff, Like I said, you win, I lose.

You come up with a number, and I'll pay.

You get right down to the heart of the matter, don't you sergeant?

I'm going to let you come up with the number, But after you've had a chance to visit our correctional facility.

Move it! Move it!

Come on, boy!

Move it! Move it! Move it!

Come on, boy!

Come on, come on. Hurry!

We practice a modern form of penology here.

We try to rehabilitate the prisoners, through a system of positive and negative feedback.

You take the work here, that's a privilege.

And that's positive feedback.

On the other hand, well...

Trustee Jackson!

Yeah, boss!

Can we see an example of negative feedback please?

Right now, boss.

You, boy!

You're lazy! That's what's the matter with you!

Ok sheriff, I get the point.

I'm impressed, you don't need to carry this little scene out for me.

No, sergeant, this ain't the army.

Here I say the "have-tos"

And "don't have-tos."

I say that youngster's malingering.

That's an example of antisocial behavior that calls for negative feedback.

Shut up!

Shut up! Shut up boy!

You're just lazy. That's all that's wrong!

Well I hope you found our little tour helpful.

Just give me a number sheriff, and you got it.

That's the trouble with your kind.

You don't appreciate subtlety.

You all come down here and change our ways of living, because you got the US supreme court on your side.

But, I reckon you're finding out we ain't broken-legged.

You want a number? $10,000.

Sheriff, I don't know what do you think the army pays these days...

Well I wouldn't know sergeant. I'm just an ignorant cracker, But I did hear that soldier magazine wrote a story on you.

Said you was uh, let's see, what'd they say? You owned your own tank, and just bought a big fancy boat.

Well shoot, that sounds like some kind of millionaire to an old poor boy like me.

Sheriff, I've spent 30....I bet, I bet you could sell that boat and raise that kind of money right now.

Oh, sergeant...

Uh... One more thing.

I think it would be inadvisable for you to get the idea of bringing some Jew lawyer down here to talk about civil rights.

Cause you do that, I'll have that little boy of yours on this farm Before you can say "habeas corpus. "

Okay, sheriff, you'll get everything you want, But you remember this, anything happens to my boy, nothing you can do will prevent me from killing you.

He's the only thing keeping you alive.

And vice versa, sergeant.

You remember that.

Billy, are you okay?

Dad, I didn't do what they say.

I didn't do anything, somebody's else's lock was on my locker.

I know, I know, it doesn't have anything to do with you.

Dad, it's gotta have something to do with me, cause I'm the one that got sent to this jail. No Billy, it's the sheriff.

The sheriff's using you to get me, that's why he put you in here, to get me.

I'm gonna do exactly what he wants, then you're out of here.

But why, dad?

It's a long story.

Once you're out of here, I'll tell you the whole thing.

But the bottom line is, you're going to get out of here, you understand?

Okay. Do you think you can you hang in here just a little bit longer?

Yes, sir. That's exactly the way I want you to talk to these guys...

"Yes, sir" and "no, sir. "

In a little while, day or two at the most, you'll be out of here, I promise you that.

I've never broken a promise to you have I?

No, sir.

I'm not gonna start now. I promise you, I will get you out of here.

That's a promise.

Bastard! You rotten, filthy son of a bitching bastard!

My baby's in jail, because you wanna go out whoring.

Alright, we'll pay the man the money and we'll get Billy back, Then you do whatever you feel you have to do.

Oh, no.

Look, LaDonna I've got this thing figured out.

We can cut those bills right in half...

No! We are getting a lawyer! And that's all there is to it!

Our son is not gonna be handled Between good ol' boys.

You have no right to even talk to me about it.

LaDonna you don't understand. This guy's an evil man.

We're not doing things his way, and we are not doing things your way.

I'm getting our son a lawyer. You have no right to tell me different.

You left your rights on a barroom floor!

Ladonna! Ladonna!

All right, you talk to a lawyer, find out what can be done, But don't you take any action that'll get to that sheriff without telling me first.

I'll do the same. Okay?




First sergeant, take over the inspection.

What is it LaDonna?

I tried, Zack. I didn't understand what you meant.

I didn't believe you. Believe me about what?

About the sheriff. Oh, Christ!

Move over.

He's here, sheriff.

Well, lookee who's here... Mr. stupid.

You are as dumb as you can be.

I told this man not to bring lawyers in on this, But he wouldn't listen to me, he's too smart.

You see sergeant, we get some big lawyer in like that from out of county, We don't want to waste his valuable time, So we went right ahead and held a trial. Now you know what?

Your lawyer's in jail... contempt of court.

We'll finish this conversation in my office.

Take the money sheriff, Give me my son.


Oh, you do know the magic word.

Sergeant, it's my sad duty to report to you that your son was found guilty, and has been sentenced to three years on the county farm.

But, I'll take the money.

It'll keep him alive for a year.

After that, maybe I'll take some more and you'll get him back.

Damn it sheriff, we made a deal! but any more lawyer noise, And that kid is gonna be shot trying to escape.

Yes, sir.

I got the power to do just about anything on that farm, Except stop the course of true love.

That I can't do.

You see, unfortunately, We do have some degenerates down there on the farm.

Unless I've missed my guess, they'll fall in love with that little boy of yours.

Of course, it will be A learnin' experience for him.

Sheriff told me why I was in here, before he beat me up, 'cause of you and your whore! Bill.

Was she worth it dad?

Look at me!


Are you sure?

Well, stop him. Block the main gate.

All right, all right! I'm coming!

Somebody better have a damn good reason for banging on that door this early in the morning, or they're gonna spend some time in my jail.

Oh, lord.

I do believe I got you covered.

Oh, Jesus.

Oh, lord. Uh... Uh...

Please, mister. I...

Now bring my son out.

Don't be cute. I'm in a bad mood.

Oh Jesus, I want to, sergeant, I swear to Jesus, But the sheriff thought you might pull some of that legal stuff so, he had your boy transferred to the county farm last night.

I put him on the work detail right away.

Who's inside the jail?

Uh... Just a couple of drunks.

He's lying.

Shut your mouth.

Deputy, you have any idea what would happen to you If I pulled this trigger?

He's got that lawyer ya'll hired in there too.

Get the deputy's keys and let everybody out Sarah.

Yes, sir.

Where's the sheriff?

Uh, he's at the state capitol, meeting with the governor. Is that so?

I swear on my mama's eyes.

Deputy, you go over there and rip the radio out of that squad car.

Uh... Uh... I can't do that.

No, that there's a new radio. The sheriff would kill me if I did that.

Yeah. Yeah, you're right.

Oh, shit!

Do all the telephone calls in town go through those two boxes over there?

They sure do.

Holy shit!

My car! My goddamn car!

Oh... Shit!

Sarah, give me that gun belt.

You, come here.

Come on.

Now, strip.

Go on. Strip.


Don't let this take all day.

Here, Sarah.

Handcuff him to that post over there.

Go on. Go!

Sergeant, can I go with you?

I can't stay here no more.

Jump on.


Let's go.

Okay, now. You stay there.

Close the hatch.

What are you doing?

You're crazy!

Lie down, Billy, I'm coming to get you.

Lie down.

Damn it, lie down!

You're crazy! You're gonna get us all killed!


Yea! All right! Yea!

Hooray! Okay! Yea!

Well, where is this invading army we're supposed to stop?

Holy shit!

Well I sure would like to help you, but...

Governor, I have got a 52 year old sergeant that's crazy.

I got a 16 year old dope fiend, and a 20 year old hooker in a Sherman tank!

They've already destroyed three squad cars, Two trucks, my office, and a '74 Chevy!

I want you to call out the national guard, and blow that son of a bitch away!

Well, I suppose I could do that, but that would take a lot of time.

Why don't you see what the army can do for you old buddy.

...and in Clemmonsville today, in what has to be the most unusual prison break in recent history, Sergeant major Zack Carey of Ft Clemmons, broke his son William out of the Clemmons county correctional facility, using a WWII Sherman tank.

All right. Thank you, son.

What's your big plan Sergeant Major?

We're gonna head for the Tennessee state line, it'll take a couple of days over back roads and broken country.

We can move pretty good, it'll slow them down a tad.

What's she doing here?


Look, once you get across the state line, If they want you, they have to extradite you, we can fight that.

That means a fair hearing in a court of law, not what you got back there in Clemmonsville.

What's she? My lawyer, or something?

At that hearing, Sarah will testify, that she was busted for vagrancy and forced into prostitution, and then you and I can tell our side of the story.

You think they're going to believe our side of the story over a sheriff's?

Bill....that sheriff is not part of the system.

In a fair hearing, a lawyer can work. He can do his job We're not running away from the law.

We're running to the law, Bill.

We're gonna win.

They're gonna lose, general!

They're going down in flames, and you're going to help me do it.

I just got back from the governors office. I can have him call you, or he can call your superior.

Either way, I want to see some tanks rolling out of here to stop that maniac.

Go ahead, call anyone you like sheriff. I don't take orders from governors.

Sergeant major Carey's resigned.

Besides, he's committed no crime in my jurisdiction.

He stole a goddamn tank! It's his tank, he can do what he wants with it.

The most I've got him on was busting a 20ft section of fence.

General, I'm the local civilian authority, and I'm hereby making a formal request of the military, to do everything in its power to assist me in apprehending...

Posse comitatus, sheriff.

Did you call me a pussy communist?

The U.S. army is, by an act of congress' posse comitatus act, is specifically precluded from enforcing civilian law, outside the military reservation.

Pussy communist?

That means I do not have the authority to provide you with a single piece of military equipment or personnel, without a direct order from my superior, or the President of the United States.

I can give you his address if you like.

Sheriff Cyrus Buelton, the chief law enforcement officer of Clemmons County, has deputized an additional 200 men in an attempt to apprehend the tank before it reaches the Tennessee state line.

Which is apparently it's destination, According to a C.B. broadcast made by Sergeant Carey from the tank today.


A tank is not what you want to call A fuel-efficient vehicle.

I mean the son of a bitch ain't driving a Toyota!

Any fool knows it ain't far to empty on a sherman tank, so I'm putting one of you brave boys In every filling station between here and the state line.

He pulls in for gas he's gonna have to get out and pump it himself.

When that happens, it's gonna be my great pleasure, to shoot that Sergeant in his privates.

Who's that out there?

Alright, don't make any noise.

I don't want to hurt you.

All I need is some gas.


You the one they talking about on television with that tank and all?


Ya know, my sister had a boy down on that farm.

He never did come back. You're welcome to anything you need.

All right, Mr. Gant.

That ought to do her.

I don't know how to say thank you, sir.

And thank your wife for the chicken too, it's real good.

Oh, you're welcome, ma'am.

Best of luck to you sergeant.

Thank you.

Sergeant, now my wife, she's a church-going woman.

She's praying for y'all.

That's nice, Mr. Gant, thank you.

Alright, you guys, finish eating.

I got a few things to square up on the tank, then we're going to move out.

Now, I would like to say a few words about Mr. gant.

He has aided and abetted escaped felons.

Normally of course, I would arrest him, but I can't do that, because those same felons did destroy my jail.


Long about tonight, I'll bet Mr. Gant would be wishin he was in a nice safe jail, especially if I suspect, some of his fellow citizens show up, to express negative feedback, on account of his helping escaped convicts, dope addicts, and prostitutes.

Isn't what you're saying an invitation to violence?

Violence don't need an invitation from me.

.....and that from sheriff Cyrus Buelton, chief law enforcement officer of Clemmons County.

Meanwhile, the manhunt for the tank continues.

This is Ken billings in the TV-9 skywatch chopper.

In the middle of our morning traffic report, we were able to obtain these exclusive pictures of the tank itself.

In a short time however, we were spotted, And the tank managed to disappear into the dense wooded area of this part of the county.

You would think that a Sherman tank would be an easy thing to spot, but you've got to give the Sergeant Major credit, when he doesn't want to be seen, he evidently will not be seen.

There you are, Jim. Billy.

We got them spotted right here sheriff.

He's headed through that thicket country, then down into them bogs.

He's heading for the bogs boys.

Looks like we got us a possum hunt!

If that possum doubles back up on the road, ain't nobody will give him any gas.

Not after what's going to happen tonight!

My wife and kids is gone!

You want to try and burn me out?

You go to it!

I'll tell you one thing, I'll take out two of you with me!

This is the tank. You assholes better move!

Thanks, Mr. gant. You're welcome, honey, ya'll just help yourself to anything you need now, ya hear me?

Billy, here. Take this.

Billy, I know how you feel about me, and maybe you're right. but I just wanted you to know nothing happened between your father and me.

We sat at the bar, that's all.

Looks like that was enough.

Nothing happened because of him. He just wanted to talk, that's all.

If he hadn't been there in the first place, none of this would have happened.

And maybe if he took me out back, nothing would've happened either.

If he would've been like any other guy with $20 in his hand and wanted to cheat on his wife, that would've been the end of it too.

You should hate him for not taking me back there in the first place, or hate me for not being sexy enough to get him there.

You can think of many reasons to hate,

but your father deserves better than that.

That's where the sheriff thinks you are right now down in them bogs.

That's where we would've been.

You'd have been stuck too.

He's got 10 mack trucks blocking the road.

How we gonna get around them?

See that holler, right there? That'll take you out.

That's stump country, but that won't hurt that thing you drivin'.

They're not in the bogs sheriff.

They must've doubled back on us.

That pussy communist.

Hold on, you two.

We're going for a rough ride.

Wouldn't that just frost them?

What is it?

I do believe we threw a track.

Billy, start up the tank.

When Sarah tells you to, inch it forward.

All right.

Sarah, get back here.

When I say it's okay, tell Billy to move it forward. Right.

Damn it!

All right...



Billy, hurry! He's hurt!

I think I've broken some ribs.

Don't move, dad. Oh, it's my fault.

No, it isn't.

Billy, get the first aid kit out of the tank.

Sarah, put this stuff back in the tank.

I'm getting a doctor. You're coughing up blood.

No Billy, look. You two set out on foot.

Just get me off to the side, I'll be alright. I'm not leaving.

Billy, look, it's like a war, you have to lick your wounds after the battle...

Horseshit dad, I'm not leaving you.

Billy I'm not asking you, I'm ordering you.

You order soldiers. I'm your son. I'm getting a doctor.

No, Billy. Look, the sheriff will get all of us.

We don't have any choice. Then we're all getting out of here.

I can drive this tank as good as you.

I'll get us across that state line.

Billy, you don't have to prove anything to me.

I'm not proving anything.

That's you and Johnny.

I'm like mom.


I love you...

More than anyone on earth.

Can you understand that?

You put your life on the line for me, for something that wasn't even your fault.

Now you can lean on me for awhile.

I love you, son.

I just want you safe. That's all.

I know.

Let's get on with it.

Let's get going.

You okay?

You sure you can run this thing?

He helped build it. You better believe he can drive it.

Yeah but we're not going to do this hide by day, move by night routine.

We're going up on the main road and haul flat out.

See that cracker try and stop a tank.

This Morning 16-year-old William Carey broadcast an S.O.S. from the tank Seems his father was injured fixing a thrown track, and William requested first aid instructions.

In the meantime, what has since been dubbed as the battle of Gant's farm, The tank and it's unlikely crew are fast becoming folk heroes, for the entire nation.

Especially to school children.

Local high school children are holding up signs that read, "right on, tank.", and "go sarge, go"

And what does sheriff Buelton have to say about this?

Let me say first, these men are criminals.

We're talking about an escaped convict And a man who is wanted for assault with a deadly weapon And a known... Excuse the expression...


These people in that tank are not heroes.

But they do have a tank.

Well you read your bible, "might does not make right. "

That boy made a serious mistake, when he came back up on this road.

Now, we're gonna stop him.

We know where, when, and how we're gonna do it.

This is Ft. Clemmons to the tank, do you copy?

We have Mrs. Carey on the line.

How bad's he hurt?

Billy? Billy?!

You have to release the button to hear him.

Mom, he's got some internal bleeding.

You tell your dad...

You tell him I'm sorry for the stuff I said.

And I love him.

And I love you.

You're a pretty good old broad there mom.

Don't you die on me, you son of a bitch.

Don't you dare die on me.

This is Jason Price speaking to you from the Tennessee Georgia state line, where a crowd of hundreds are gathered with more arriving every minute.

At what will be the finish line, of the most bizarre race ever run in this part of the United States.

If the tank can make it this far.

We're here live with Mrs. Ladonna Carey, at the Tennessee state capitol.

What reasons did the governor give for not seeing you?

The governor said he couldn't spare five minutes of his time.

What are you going to do about the situation?

I would like to ask that every woman who can hear me, try to imagine that it were her son and husband out there, and phone the governor's office, ask him to spare five minutes, just five minutes, to a woman who's trying to save her family's lives.

I'm going to stay right here until he does.

State capitol.

State capitol.

Yes, he'll get the message.

State capitol.

300 calls so far.

Who needs this shit?

I say yes, I'm harboring an escaped convict.

I say no, then I just shot Jesse James.

Who needs it?


Do whatever you have to do. And keep me advised.

State troopers office.

They reckon 1,000 people have gathered on our side of the state line.

Senators don't have to deal with this kinda shit!

Get ahold of that Carey woman, tell her I'll meet with her.

Billy! Billy Carey!

This is Ken Billings of WGAZ-TV 9.

We're flying right above you. Do you read me?

Loud and clear.

How's it going Billy? How's your dad?

Not too hot.

He's got some internal bleeding.

Do you think he'll be able to make it across the state line?

You better believe it, we'll make it across.

What will you do then Billy? Will you surrender to the sheriff?

No way! There's no way I'm going to let the sheriff take my dad.

That's some kid. That's some old man.

If he wants to make this the last stand at the alamo, then that's what we'll do, because we've got a load of firepower.

We're going to get to the law. The real law.

For a long time, like every other kid my age, I thought my dad was wrong about alot of things, but not anymore.

He doesn't have to prove anything to me, and I don't have to prove anything to him.

The bottom line is, he's my father and I love him.

If that sheriff tries to hurt my old man, I'll blow him away.

That little shit's running for governor.

Mrs. Carey I have a good deal of sympathy for your plight, but this is a very delicate matter.

All I'm asking is that they get a fair hearing, before you hand them back to someone like Buelton.

It's not quite that simple. There are other considerations.

What considerations?

This is a very church-conscious state Mrs. Carey I'm talking about a Christian act of justice.

In all candor Mrs. Carey, I'd find it very difficult, to put the full prestige and honor of the governorship, behind a crusade led by two men in a tank, With a 20-year-old prostitute.

Governor, that's my husband and son, in that tank with that 20 year old prostitute.

If I don't have a problem with that, I fail to see why you should.

Perhaps we look at it from different perspectives.

Well, my perspective has about a dozen reporters, from every TV, radio station, and newspaper you can think of, waiting for me to come outside and make a statement.

Now, I'm either going to tell them, that they have a governor they can be proud of, who's willing to see that justice is done, No more, no less.

Or I'm going to tell them their governor is an asshole!

Which is it going to be?

Are you threatening the governor of this state with blackmail Mrs. Carey?

Yes, sir, I am!



Euclid, will you come here?

Yes, sir.

Where's that fella Avery?

He's coming right in now, sir. Come on.

You Avery?

Yes, sir.

Hell sheriff, where did you get that?

Sheriff Bucks loaned it to me.

He had the thing up on his wall.

Now they tell me you can shoot this. Is that right?

Hell, that's all I did in the Army.

Alright, now here's the plan.

The tank is gonna be coming up this road.

He is gonna see those trucks, he can't get over them.

So he's gonna have to veer off this road, out into this field, and when that happens, he's gonna get stuck in the mud.

That's what's gonna happen, all right.

That's what I said!

When that happens, I want you to fire to immobilize the tank.

I don't care if he can still shoot. but I don't want him to be able to move, ya hear me?

Piece of cake, sheriff.

Hit him in the track, blow that track.

That'll stop him for sure.

Governor, have you talked to Mrs. Carey yet?

Yes, we have.

Have you made a decision yet?

Yes, we have made a decision.

If Mrs. Carey's husband and son reach our jurisdiction, a full and complete hearing will take place, in which we'll examine all the facts of this entire affair, before any request for extradition is granted.

Where is Mrs. Carey?

Mrs. Carey is on her way to the state line, where I hope to join her within the hour.

Hang in there, dad. I think we're home free now.

The governor will fight the extradition.

Zack, Billy, you've won!

All right! We are ready!

Euclid, get them water trucks out of here.

Everybody else, get behind this dirt ramp.

They got the road blocked with trucks.

I'm going around.

Go! Go! Go! Go! Go! Go!

Go! Go!

Go! Go! Go! Go! Go! Go!

Hold him there.

Hold him.

Now get him!

That's all right, that's all right.

Don't be nervous, squeeze the trigger.

But if you miss again, it's your ass!

Just keep going, son.

We did it! We got him!

I'm as happy as a pig in shit!

Maybe you ain't a faggot after all.

All right out there, the game is over.

Come out and surrender.


Drop on it, sheriff.

Get down, boys! Down!

Now that betrays a negative attitude, Billy boy.

But that's all right.

Me and my boys got all the time in the world, and we can wait.

Fire away, Billy boy.

We got a long day ahead of us.

So you just sit there in that tank and enjoy the afternoon sun.

Move those people back.

Isn't there anything they can do?

They've got no engine, they can't move. They gotta be pulled out.

Hey what are you guys doing here?


When it gets dark, I want the two of you to go out through the hatch, and slip across the line.

I'm not gonna let you die.

I'm staying with you.



If I surrender now, will you get medical attention to my father?

I hear you, Billy.

Yes, sir. You give up now, I'll see your daddy gets straight to the hospital.

You got the word of sheriff Buelton on that.

What the hell is that?

Cover me.

Shoot that hippie son of a bitch!

Let the governor through. Let him through.

Good old son of a bitch!


Pull! Everybody, pull!

Pull! Pull it! Pull!

Pull! Pull! Pull! Pull!

Stop them bastards, shoot into that crowd!

You shoot into this crowd, and we'll turn this into another little big horn Buelton.

Stop them out there!

Come on out of here!

Grab that cable! Haul that cable in!

Pull! Pull!

Come on, governor! Pull!

We've got to try something else.

Follow me.

Get those tables out of the way!

Come on get em out. Move it!

I got you now, you son of a bitch.

Come out of that tank or I'll burn you out!

I'll fry you alive! You hear me?

I'll pour gasoline down that hatch, 'Cause you have lost, sergeant, and I won!

Hook her up. Hook her up!

We stopped a sherman tank!

We didn't get no help from the governor, army...

Pull! Pull!

I'm coming, sheriff!


You syphilitic bolshevik!

You pervert!

You pussy communist!

Pull! Pull! Come on!

Pull! Pull!

Pull! Pull! Pull! Pull!

You did real good, old girl.