By default thrift wants to install the C++, Java, Perl, PHP, and Ruby generators; but all I wanted to enable was Java.
Here is the configuration options I had to set to get that to work:
./configure --disable-gen-cpp --with-cpp=no --disable-gen-c_glib --with-c_glib=no --disable-gen-perl --with-perl=no --disable-gen-python --with-python=no --disable-php --with-php=no --disable-gen-ruby --with-ruby=no
Now I have a machine gun... HO! HO! HO!