Robespierre, a powerful figure in the French Revolution and the subsequent Reign of Terror, is desperately looking for his black book, a death list of those marked by him for the guillotine and a key to help him eventually emerge as the country’s dictator. He hopes his agents will recover it, but, if it falls into the wrong hands, it would mean his political ruin and death.
Starred by Robert Cummings, Richard Basehart, Richard Hart
Reign of Terror (The Black Book) BEST QUOTES
Maximilian Robespierre: There’s a man in Strasbourg who isn’t afraid of anything. A man named Duval.
Maximilian Robespierre: You know him?
Fouché: No, but I know his record. Five hundred executions in a single month. That’s almost as good as yours, Max.
Maximilian Robespierre: I’ve sent for Duval. He arrives at the Blue Goose Inn tonight. You go there and bring him to the bakery. I’ll meet him there.
Fouché: How will I know him?
Maximilian Robespierre: As one snake to another, you’ll smell each other out.
Maximilian Robespierre: That’s *my* chair you’re sitting in, Fouche.
Fouché: I just wanted to see how it fits.
Maximilian Robespierre: Danton liked to sit in that chair, too.
Fouché: And to think that he had supper with us only last night. It’s amazing how fast you lose friends these days.
Maximilian Robespierre: And you never know who’s next on the list, Fouche.
Fouché: It must be quite a thrill, making out your death list every night.
François Barras: I arrived just in time to see Danton on his way out. Exactly as you planned, wasn’t it?
Maximilian Robespierre: Danton was my friend, not yours. Why should you feel badly about it?
François Barras: Because Danton was a good soldier. Without him, France would have been overrun by the armies of Europe.
Maximilian Robespierre: That was yesterday. Like all good soldiers, he outlived his usefulness.
François Barras: This would make you dictator of France.
Maximilian Robespierre: Yes.
François Barras: We didn’t storm the Bastille to make any man dictator.
Maximilian Robespierre: I’m not “any man”.
Fouché: You had a visitor, I see.
Charles D’Aubigny: All work and no play?
Fouché: I thought you enjoyed your work.
Charles D’Aubigny: The real pleasure of my work went out with the guillotine. It’s all over too fast now. Even hanging, that lasts for a few moments. No, Citizen Fouche. What this country needs is an elegant, slow death. Give a man four hours to die, it’s worth watching.
Fouché: Let’s try it sometime, shall we?
Charles D’Aubigny: Anyone in particular?
Fouché: Robespierre has a beautiful long list. We’re gonna have some great times together, eh, Duval?
Charles D’Aubigny: Yes, I can hardly wait.
Saint-Just: You know something? I don’t think you *are* Duval.
Charles D’Aubigny: No?
Saint-Just: You don’t look like a butcher.
Charles D’Aubigny: You know, at first glance, one could almost mistake you for a human being.
Maximilian Robespierre: I can’t decide whether to promote you or denounce you.
Fouché: Where in all Paris would you find anybody as disloyal, unscrupulous, scheming, treacherous, cunning, or deceitful as I? Oh, you’d have to do some tall looking, Max.
Charles D’Aubigny: Seems I remember an appointment we had four years ago. Only one of us showed up. The stupid one. Your Charles has grown up to be a smart boy, now.
Madelon: I’ll be waiting.
Charles D’Aubigny: I wouldn’t count the minutes.
Madelon: It’s so dark in here.
Madelon: I can hear in the dark… speak.
Charles D’Aubigny: Can’t you see I’m not lying?
Madelon: Frankly, no.
Maximilian Robespierre: I never shake hands. It’s unsanitary.
Charles D’Aubigny: [to Saint Just] You know at first glance one could almost mistake you for a human being.
Maximilian Robespierre: Dead enemies make good friends.
Madelon: I don’t blame you for hating me.
Charles D’Aubigny: I don’t like to deprive you of that satisfaction, Madelon, but I don’t hate you. I just don’t care anymore.
Fouché: One thing about Paris… never dull
Fouché: [Last lines] Robespierre planned on having statues built of himself. But all he leaves behind him… is stale bread.
Napoleon Bonaparte: [His face isn’t shown] The end is always being put to some use in France, citizen. The art of being a Frenchman is knowing what comes next.
Fouché: Have you any idea?
Napoleon Bonaparte: I am neither a Frenchman nor a politician. I am merely a soldier.
Fouché: Well, my friend, I must be off. Perhaps we shall meet again some time.
Fouché: [stops, turns around] Oh, uh, by the way, I don’t believe I got your name.
Napoleon Bonaparte: My name is Bonaparte. Napoleon Bonaparte.
Fouché: Napoleon Bonaparte. I’ll try to remember that.
Charles D’Aubigny: [to Madelon] Just one more kiss and I’d have melted.
Fouché: [D’Aubigny, leading Barras out a secret exit, is intercepted by Fouche and his men] Citizen Barras, you’re under arrest.
Charles D’Aubigny: He’s my prisoner.
Charles D’Aubigny: Is.
Fouché: I’m afraid you’re a little confused, Duval. *I’m* the Chief of Police.
Charles D’Aubigny: You *were* Chief of Police.
Charles D’Aubigny: [whips out a document from inside his coat] My authorization from Robespierre. Now, if you’ll be so kind as to leave?
Charles D’Aubigny: [to Madelon] Just because I refused a kiss, you’d have me killed. Since when have you put such a price on your kisses?
Fouché: There’s a revolution going on… Don’t stay out late.
Maximilian Robespierre: Death! I demand death for the enemies of France! I denounce… Danton!
Danton: Citizens, open your eyes! Tomorrow it may be *you* standing here, accused! Condemned! Unheard!
Danton: [struggling, as soldiers lead him away] Beware, Robespierre! The blood of Danton will choke on your throat!
Maximilian Robespierre: If you’ve come to plea for your husband’s life, you’re late.
Danton’s wife: Maximilian, what has come over you? Danton is your friend – your very *good* friend! Together you saved France! Without Danton, where would you be today?
Maximilian Robespierre: I can’t let personal feelings interfere. The people have found him guilty.
Danton’s wife: “The people”? But *you* are the people. They do what *you* say!
Maximilian Robespierre: [brushes past her] Take out an appeal!
Danton’s wife: [sobbing] Who can I appeal to? Only you! Look at me. Answer me! Stop playing God!
Maximilian Robespierre: [impassively] “God”? The Revolution abolished God. It’s only the will of the people. And the people have spoken.