Movie Wisdom – James Westerfield Edition

6 Oct

The other day, I was flipping through the guide when I saw that Hang ‘Em High was on. As I always do when I see this movie on the guide, I turned to that channel and watched some of it. I do not think it is the greatest Western ever made. In fact, it has a “television set” feel. However, it is still one of my favorites.

As luck would have it, my favorite scene was coming up. It probably sounds morbid, but I really like the part where they are having the multiple hanging in the middle of town. Folks have filled the streets to see the spectacle and the condemned are brought to the platform. As the hangman puts covers over the heads of each man, they are asked if they have any last requests, and one of them says he wants a chaw of tobacco. Then, he spits before that put on the hood.

I have watched that scene a ton of times, but, this time, I decided to find out who wanted the tobacco. He is one of those character actors that you see in a lot of stuff, but I did not know who he was. It turns out that it was James Westerfield, and he was born in Nashville.James Westerfield

He was a guest star in a bunch of television shows and acted in a lot of movies. In his honor, I decided to see what wisdom can be found in his films.

From The Pride of the Yankees

All the arguing in the world can’t change the decision of the umpire.

People have to live their own lives. Nobody can live it for you.

From On the Waterfront

Do it to him before he does it to you.

Conscience… that stuff can drive you nuts!

Some people think the Crucifixion only took place on Calvary. Well, they better wise up!

Some people just have a face that sticks in your mind.

From The Shaggy Dog

Frankly, I think that dogs don’t like mailmen because… well, because sometimes they bring bad news.

There is nothing wrong with girls; they’re character building.

From The Absent-Minded Professor

There’s nothing in the rule book that says one team can’t jump higher than the other.

Desperate men do desperate things.

From Hang ‘Em High

When you take the devil into your mouth, you’re doomed!

When you hang a man, you better look at him.

We all have our ghosts.

From True Grit

Outside is place for shooting!

Looking back is a bad habit.

I would not put a thief in my mouth to steal my brains!

From The Love God?

When will the government stop interfering with private business?

If you love your country, you’ll publish a filthy magazine.

Yep, those are definitely words to live by.

9 Responses to “Movie Wisdom – James Westerfield Edition”

  1. frontrangescribbles October 6, 2014 at 02:41 #

    Some very good quotes and wise words.

    • Rick October 6, 2014 at 03:10 #


  2. jcalberta October 6, 2014 at 17:26 #

    Yes I recall him. One of those actors we see many times, but likely couldn’t remember where? He was in a lot of movies and TV shows going all the way back to 1940.
    I like to draw attention to these guys too – give them some due. And this guy was a capable actor – could do comedy, drama, good guys, bad guys – whatever you needed. Yeah …
    Good one.

    • Rick October 6, 2014 at 18:36 #

      Thanks. He was in The Andy Griffith Show, which is my all time favorite.

  3. Marilyn Armstrong October 6, 2014 at 18:19 #

    I thought the one about the Crucifixion was said by Karl Malden. I guess I mis-remembered. That seems to be happening a lot lately.

    • Rick October 6, 2014 at 18:37 #

      According to the Rules of Wisdom, the quotes can be from anyone in the movie. It just has to be a movie that I have seen with this actor in it.

  4. Manu Kurup October 8, 2014 at 12:37 #

    I remember that scene. Watched it for Eastwood. 🙂

    • Rick October 8, 2014 at 14:20 #

      That movie has several good scenes, but that one is still my favorite.

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