Sunday, January 29, 2012

Famous One Liners

Movies, many of which are based on novels, contain a lot of dialogue but why is it that some lines become so popular that they’re instantly recognizable by just about everyone? What is it about them that makes them stand out and stand the test of time?
“My mama always said, ‘Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get.’” Tom Hanks played Forrest Gump in the movie, “Forrest Gump,” based on the novel by Winston Groom.
 “As God is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again,” Scarlet O’Hara said in “Gone With the Wind.” The book was written by Margaret Mitchell and, in the movie, Vivien Leigh played the part of the southern belle.
Or, how about this one? “I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse.” Mario Puzo wrote this novel entirely from the research he’d done; he had no experience whatsoever with the Mafia. Marlon Brando played Vito Corleone in the movie, “The Godfather.”
Who remembers this? “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” Ryan O’Neal played Oliver Barrett IV and Ali MacGraw played Jennifer Cavilleri in “Love Story,” based on the novel by Erich Segal.
“I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too!” “There’s no place like home.” “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.” L. Frank Baum was the author of “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” and Judy Garland played Dorothy Gale in the movie, “The Wizard of Oz.”
 “May the Force be with you.” This is an interesting example because the movie, created by George Lucas, actually came out before the book. Harrison Ford played Han Solo in “Star Wars.”
Can you think of other examples?


  1. Nice post, Pat. And remember: We'll always have Paris.

  2. Thanks, John! Don't you just love some of those one liners?

  3. "Fasten your seatbelts--it's going to be a bumpy night." Bette Davis, All About Eve.

    I also found of site of misquotations at

  4. Sunny,
    The site you found with misquotations sounds interesting. I'll have to check it out.

  5. "Stand up. Your father's passing," from To Kill a Mockingbird. Two short lines that show an incredible amount of respect.

    "Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine." Casablanca (As a Bogey fan, I had to include that one.)

  6. Again, Margaret Mitchell, Gone with the Wind:

    [Prissy] I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' babies.

  7. Marja,
    I was hoping you'd come up with a Bogey quote! Here's another one for you. "Here's looking at you, kid."

    I love the scene where Prissy says that to Scarlet.

  8. Okay, I'm a Harry Potter fan, but if you tell anyone...."It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to your enemies, but a great deal more to stand up to
    your friends."

    - –Dumbledore, Harry Potter

    Aslo misquotes: "I invented the internet." Misattributed to Al Gore.

  9. I like that one, Kat. I haven't read any of the Harry Potter books yet but one of these days....

  10. "Take your stinking paws off me, you damn dirty ape!"

    Planet of the Apes.

  11. Wow, William. I'd forgotten that one. I loved "Planet of the Apes."

  12. "I know its an elevator and it only goes down" and "is it hot in here are is it just me!" Kurt Russel in Big
    Trouble in Little China' augie hicks

  13. Lesley, Eileen and Augie,
    More good ones. The only thing better than a great movie is a great book!

  14. "Go ahead, make my day!" and the long one by Eastwood that ends with, "You have to ask yourself one question. Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya punk?"

    You forgot the best one from Gone - "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn."


    "You said you were going to kill me last."
    "I lied."

    "Yippee Ki-yay, mother----"

    "I see dead people."

    "Where ya headed?"
    "Hell, in the end."

    "Now remember, things look bad and it looks like you're not gonna make it, then you gotta get mean. I mean plumb, mad-dog mean. 'Cause if you lose your head and you give up then you neither live nor win. That's just the way it is."

    "Get ready, little lady. Hell is coming to breakfast."

  15. Wow, Stephen! You've got some good ones! Thanks!

  16. "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn" from Rhett Butler in "Gone with the Wind" caused quite a stir. It was the first time profanity had ever been used in a movie. Then there is "Shit happens" another one-liner from Forrest Gump.

  17. Two great ones, Catherine, and also two of my favorites. Not that I ever use profanity! :)

  18. Yes, it is interesting how certain quotes from movies or books can stay with us, and sometimes even make us think to the point where it sort of changes us in some way. The impact can be powerful! My favorite book & movie is Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk. A few examples of quotes from it that have inspired me include: "The things you own end up owning you," "I say never be complete. I say stop being perfect. I say let's evolve. Let the chips fall where they may.", and "Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don't need." Those are just a few. I could go on-that one is loaded with great quotes. Another quote that has always made an impression on me is from the movie American Beauty: "There's nothing worse than being ordinary."