Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments



My Little Chickadee (1940)

 





Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions
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My Little Chickadee (1940)

In Edward Cline's western comedy, the only film pairing both W.C. Fields and Mae West, with the backdrop of the 1880s American West:

  • the set-up: the journey of Chicago singer Flower Belle Lee (Mae West) westward to see her relatives in the town of Little Bend: her Aunt Lou (Ruth Donnelly) and Uncle John (Willard Robertson)
  • the stagecoach holdup of a gold shipment by a "Masked Bandit", who ordered Flower Belle and a town gossip and prudish busybody Mrs. Gideon (Margaret Hamilton) out of the coach; Flower Belle was annoyed: "Don't mind being held up, but I don't like the inconvenience"; as the Bandit rode off with the gold in his saddlebags, he grabbed Flower Belle onto his horse for an abduction - and nocturnal rendezvous
  • and later, Flower Belle's expulsion from Little Bend by a judge (Addison Richards) for her indifference, sauciness and her romance with the mysterious masked bandit ("On account of her carryings-on in Little Bend, she was asked to leave town and she will not be permitted to return until she is respectable and married"); on the train to Greasewood City, she met con-man Cuthbert J. Twillie (W. C. Fields), who introduced himself by presenting his card, with the subtitle "Novelties & Notions"; he complimented her name: "Flower Belle. What a euphonious appellation. Easy on the ears and a banquet for the eyes"; she replied: "You're kind of cute yourself"
  • the sequence of an Indian attack on the train - with arrows whizzing by Flower Belle; with two six-shooters she fired back: "They can't get away with this. They can't intimidate me...This is better than a shooting gallery"
  • after the Indian attack, Twillie held and kissed Flower Belle's hand, and exclaimed: "Ah, what symmetrical digits! Soft as the fuzz of a baby's arm"; Twillie impulsively proposed: "Is it possible for us to be lonesome together?"; moving over to sit next to her, he promised: "I will be all things to you: father, mother, husband, counselor, Jackanapes, bartender...My heart is a bargain today. Will you take me?" - believing he was rich after eyeing his bag full of money (it only contained phony oil-well coupons), she accepted Twillie's proposal of marriage - with a roll of her eyes: "I'll take you, and how"
  • the scene of their marriage aboard the train - a phony sham ceremony officiated by one of the passengers Amos Budge (Donald Meek), a gambler who looked and acted like a minister
  • in Greasewood City, Flower Belle insisted that they have separate rooms when they checked into the hotel, although he attempted to sweet talk her with cute names: "My little dove pie....My little sugar-coated wedding cake"; he realized when she shut her door on him: "Seems to me I'm getting the old heave-ho"
  • after boasting about bravely facing the Indians attacking the train, Twillie was made Sheriff by the corrupt town boss and saloon owner Jeff Badger (Joseph Calleia); Badger and the town's crusading newspaper editor-reporter Wayne Carter (Dick Foran) both were attracted to Flower Belle
Teaching School
Twillie in Bed With a Goat
Kissing the "Masked Bandit"
  • when the town's schoolteacher fell ill, Flower Belle assured everyone that she would be a good schoolmarm teaching arithmetic, and told her rowdy class of males: "I was always pretty good at figures, myself"
  • the attempts of Twillie to 'consummate' his marriage to Flower Belle, who found himself making love to a goat in their bed ("Darling, have you changed your perfume?")
  • the sequence of Twillie accused of being the masked bandit (a disguise he used to get into her boudoir); he was strung up by a lynch mob and delivered his last wish ("I'd like to see Paris before I die. Philadelphia will do"), but was saved from hanging by Flower Belle's intervention (she shot at the noose-rope); it was revealed that Badger was the masked bandit after she kissed him ("That man's kiss is like a signature")
  • at the conclusion, Flower Belle told other possible suitors: "Any time you got nothin' to do and lots of time to do it, come up"; Twillie delivered his last line to Flower Belle as he left town to go East to attend to his "hair" oil wells: "If you get up around the Grampian Hills, you must come up and see me sometime" (Mae West's signature line); she responded: "Aw, yeah, yeah, I'll do that, my little chickadee" (W.C. Fields' catchphrase)
"...you must come up and see me sometime"
"...I'll do that, my little chickadee"
THE END
  • the camera's last image -- Flower Belle sashaying her bottom as she ascended the stairs (the words "THE END" were super-imposed on her rear end)

Flower Belle Kidnapped by the Masked Bandit After Stagecoach Holdup

Twillie to Flower Belle: "What a euphonious appellation. Easy on the ears and a banquet for the eyes"

Indian Attack: Flower Belle Firing Back

On the Train: Twillie to Flower Belle: "What symmetrical digits!"

Response to Twillie's Marriage Proposal: "I'll take you, and how"

Twillie's Bag "Full of Money"

The Ceremony

At the Greasewood City Hotel: "Seems to me I'm getting the old heave-ho"

Flower Belle Saving Twillie From a Hanging

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