My 10 Favorite Movie Quotes
Sometimes our memories of films can be tied to great movie quotes. So I decided to make a list of my 10 favorites.
Nearly everyone has a list of favorite movie quotes.
Who, for example, doesn’t recall the final line from Gone With the Wind or what Chief Brody says in the movie Jaws as soon as he sees the size of the monster shark they’re pursuing?
Here are the 10 movie quotes I’d consider my favorite.
1. ‘A boy’s best friend is his mother.’
This line, spoken by killer Norman Bates to potential victim Marian Crane, is both sweet and tragic: It’s Bates’ obsession with his long-lost mother that makes him keep her alive in his own mind with deadly consequences.
2. ‘Our suspects are albinos and chain-smokers?’
‘Foul Play’ (1978)
Chevy Chase plays San Francisco detective Tony Ferguson whose job is to protect librarian Gloria Mundy (played by Goldie Hawn). This movie, a spoof on classic Hitchcock films, mixes a bizarre collection of characters in a romantic suspense comedy.
3. ‘Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.’
‘Gone With the Wind’ (1939)
By the time this line, from Clark Gable’s Rhett Butler to Vivian Leigh’s Scarlett O’Hara, you’re simultaneously hoping they’ll reconcile and celebrating that he finally told her off once and for all.
4. ‘You’re going to need a bigger boat.’
Here’s the aforementioned quote from Roy Scheider’s Brody in the classic shark movie.
What makes the quote even better is its backstory, which involves a production barge used to shoot the action but that was often said to be too small for that job.
5. ‘Damn it Grady, this is the President.’
Henry Fonda played a president nearly everyone would want in the Oval Office. In this Cold War classic, the president faces a horrible crisis: a computer glitch has signaled American fighters that World War III is underway and they are to attack Moscow with a nuclear bomb. Grady is the leader of the squadron on its erroneous mission.
6. “I hated her sooo much…flames…flames…flames…on the side of my face…’
As the story goes, this line was a complete ad lib on the part of Madeline Khan:
It was also, reportedly, the only improvised moment in the entire movie.
7. ‘You were a very apt pupil, weren’t you? You were a very apt pupil.’
Our hero, Scottie Ferguson, begins putting together the nightmare that shattered his life and nearly allowed a husband to get away with murder.
8. ‘That can only mean one thing. And I don’t know what it is.’
‘Murder By Death’ (1976)
Neil Simon wrote this comedic spoof on classic whodunits and the large ensemble cast was a perfect fit for his script. This particular line, delivered by Peter Falk as Sam Diamond, a takeoff on Humphrey Bogart’s character in The Maltese Falcon was one of many gems in this script.
9. ‘I’ve been kidnapped by Kmart!’
‘Ruthless People’ (1986)
Bette Midler plays an heiress whose husband, played by Danny DeVito, was planning to kill her. Luckily for him, kidnappers decide to hold her for a ransom. But DeVito, who doesn’t want her back anyway and now hopes the kidnappers will do away with her for him, continually refuses to pay the ransom amounts, which the kidnappers keep dropping. When Midler’s character learns she’s been discounted, she tearfully delivers the line.
10. ‘Gentlemen! You can’t fight in here! This is the War Room!
‘Dr. Strangelove Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb’ (1964)
Peter Sellers, as the president, attempts to break up a fight in the room whose name suggests it might be the perfect place to have one.
Released the same year as Fail-Safe, this movie is every bit as funny as Fail-Safe is suspenseful.
That’s my list…what’s your favorite movie quote?