Here's from the movie The Enemy Below(1957)

Oh, thanks, Salvador. - You've got us down 200, partner. - Sorry, sir. - Six spades. - I thought I could do it, sir. - Well, don't go off half-cocked again. - No, sir.

You can watch the movie on youtube. The scene starts at 4:18. I have no idea what they are talking about. What does "You've got us down 200, partner" mean? What does "I thought I could do it, sir" mean? Etc.

  • OK, tell me the reason for the downvote. Don't worry. I won't revenge-downvote you. – Makoto Kato Sep 24 '14 at 23:04

"Down two hundred" in this context refers to scoring in bridge.
Being "down" in bridge means that your opponents have gained points, by preventing you from winning as many tricks as you and your partner said you would. Two hundred is a fairly serious sum for a single hand.

"Six spades."
Six spades is a very high bid in bridge, and generally requires both very good cards (indicated by previous, lower bids) and intelligent play to succeed. The man who says this is implying that his partner possessed neither. Note that much of this is conveyed through intonation: the overall tone of this conversation establishes that the older man is frustrated and angry with the younger man's reckless/naive behavior.

"I thought I could do it, sir."
Here the younger man is trying to defend his decision; since he is speaking to an officer who outranks him (possibly his commanding officer, but I haven't watched the rest of the movie), he is trying to be polite and deferential. Since he did not, in fact, "do it", he is also being apologetic.

"Well, don't go off half-cocked again."
The older man accepts the implicit apology here and warns his partner not to bid as recklessly again.

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When gambling, "down" means losing money, and "up" means winning money. The speaker is blaming his partner in the game for losing two hundred dollars.

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  • What about the other phrases? – Makoto Kato Sep 24 '14 at 23:07
  • Haven't watched the clip, but sounds like maybe they were playing Euchre and his partner tried to "Go it alone" on a six spades hand and wasn't able to take all the tricks. Just a guess. – Jim Sep 24 '14 at 23:07
  • @Jim youtube.com/watch?v=XweI7AxCAdQ – Makoto Kato Sep 24 '14 at 23:18
  • 2
    @Jim That's right, except play the clip and it's clearly bridge. Post it! – StoneyB on hiatus Sep 24 '14 at 23:19
  • By the way, it's a pretty good movie. – Makoto Kato Sep 24 '14 at 23:29

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