A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library. ~Shelby Foote

Friday, June 24, 2005

Friday's List, part I

Okay, I was going to do sports, but then even Gym Jim thought the AFI quote thing would make a great Friday list, so I bow to the wishes of all you freaks with nothing better to do than read my ramblings. Who am I to buck the freak train? Before presenting my own list, let's take a look at the list that inspired it: AFI's 100 years... 100 Movie Quotes.

AFI did 100, I'm only doing' 25. As a baseline measure, here's AFI's top-25 (which is heavily weighted to dramas and old movies I haven't seen) with my commentary in green:
25. "Show me the money!" Jerry Maguire, 1996 Hmm... good line, but #25? Bit high.
24. "I am big! It's the pictures that got small." Sunset Blvd., 1950 Never saw the movie and I don't recall the line making it into the popular culture. How could this be #24?
23. "There's no place like home." The Wizard of Oz, 1939 Good line, but does The Wizard of Oz really deserve two spots in the top 25? I think not.
22. "Bond. James Bond." Dr. No, 1962. Short, sweet, universally known and borrowed upon.
21. "A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti." The Silence of the Lambs, 1991 Oh yeah, this one really rolls off the tongue, doesn't it? Please, what a lame entry this high. Maybe in the top 100, but not here.
20. "Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship." Casablanca, 1942 See #23, though I think this line is even less deserving than Dorothy's. "Play it again Sam" should be on the list ahead of this even though it never actually occurs in the movie. Actaul "Play it" quote is #28.
19. "I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!" Network, 1976 Huh.
18. "Made it, Ma! Top of the world!" White Heat, 1949 Yes? Vaguely aware of this one. 18?
17. "Rosebud." Citizen Kane, 1941 Great movie. Wouldn't put this one word quote this high.
16. "They call me Mister Tibbs!" In the Heat of the Night, 1967 Great movie. Wouldn't put this five word quote this high.
15. "E.T. phone home." E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, 1982 Oh pleaze! How this movie ever got this popular is beyond me, but it does not stand the test of time. Put the Close Encounters of the Third Kind chords in ahead of this one.
14. "The stuff that dreams are made of." The Maltese Falcon, 1941 Great movie. Wouldn't put this seven word quote this high. (I sense a theme).
13. "Love means never having to say you're sorry." Love Story, 1970 Ackphblttt! Sorry, hair ball. All I can say here is... No.
12. "I love the smell of napalm in the morning." Apocalypse Now, 1979 Now we're getting somewhere. Yeah, this is top-15 material.
11. "What we've got here is failure to communicate." Cool Hand Luke, 1967 Ditto.
10. "You talking to me?" Taxi Driver, 1976 Good line. This high? Maybe.
9. "Fasten your seatbelts. It's going to be a bumpy night." All About Eve, 1950 Top 10? A stretch.
8. "May the Force be with you." Star Wars, 1977 Yeah, this seems about right.
7. "All right, Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up." Sunset Blvd., 1950 Hmmm... #7?
6. "Go ahead, make my day." Sudden Impact, 1983 Great line. I still prefer "But being this is a 44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world and will blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself a question. Do I feel lucky? Well do ya, punk?" (#51 in abbreviated fashion) but I admit there is something to be said for brevity.
5. "Here's looking at you, kid." Casablanca, 1942 Timeless. Works for me.
4. "Toto, I've got a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore." The Wizard of Oz, 1939 Top 25, sure, but not top 5.
3. "You don't understand! I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I could've been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am." On the Waterfront, 1954 Great line, but I don't think this one has permeated pop culture the way most these others have. #3 is too high.
2. "I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse." The Godfather, 1972 Dead on balls accurate.
1. "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn." Gone with the Wind, 1939 Yeah.

Upon further review, I realize that it isn't just weighted heavily toward dramas, the entire top-25 quotes are from dramas. Nary a comedy among them, with Jerry Maquire being the closest to a comedy. The highest actual line from a comedy is #33: "I'll have what she's having" from When Harry Met Sally. Further proof the AFI list is crap-- two quotes from Jerry Maquire made it in. Yeah, right. Further, further proof-- the first, and only, Bill Murray quote is all the way down at #92.

I believe you could make a pretty good top-10, maybe even 25, just with Bill Murray quotes. Anyway, there's AFI's list with my snarking added in for free. Next post will be my list, and you guys will have to add the snarking.

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Comments:
Ugh that list of 100 is just AWFUL. I'd put maybe 20% of them on my list of top 100. Where are all the great action movie one-liners? Where are all the great comedy quotes? A lot of the quotes they chose are just one or two word expressions that mean nothing when taken out of the context of the movie. Retarded. Who came up with these? I was disappointed that none of Merlin's lines from John Boorman's Excalibur were on there; he had about 15 awesome quotes in that movie could easily have been chosen...

And I'm sorry, but no movie quote list is complete without "Say hello to my little friend!" from Scarface. I didn't see that on there. Or maybe I missed it?
 
You missed it. #61 on their list.

I wouldn't say it's awful, just heavily, heavily biased towards dramas and "good" films. Here's a challenged though-- try to make your own list. It's hard. There's a ton of great lines out there.
 
Yeah I'm not too sure I could do it in a reasonable amount of time. Probably take me all day. I guess that's the advantage of getting to read someone else's blog and not having to do one yourself! It's always easier to pick someone else's list apart than to supply your own. ;-)

(btw - Pulp Fiction could easily supply a dozen or so!)
 
Not only didn't they ignore comedies, but they had no sense of humor about the list at all.

How about some Monty Python:
"It's just a flesh wound!"
"Come and see the violence inherited in the system! Help, help, I'm being repressed!!"

Maybe even a little Jack:
"Women, a mistake or did he (God) do it to us on purpose!?!"

And obviously:
"Zed's dead, baby. Zed's dead."
 
#1) Hell kevin smith movies alone could produce a decent top 25....and number one would have to be "how do you know he doesnt smoke monkey pole"

#2) of course this list is slanted to dramas..its an AFI list ...it also is slanted to the pre 50's

#3) there are several movies (animal house and jaws come to mind immediately) where they didnt choose the right quote....and then a movie like the graduate which deserves two or casablanca which deserves its six (if not more) has them completely out of order

for those of you scoring at home..."did we give up when the germans bombed pearl harbor"..and "this was not a boating accident" are the quotes i had in mind...and how can "im shocked to find gambling going on here" be left out??

#4) the list as a whole is crap but the top six is pretty solid...especially if you factor in how the lines have transcended movies into conversation..i use "i coulda been a contender" all the time and never knew what movie it was from...my only beef..."here's looking at you kid should be number one"
 
The great lines from the Princess Bride are a glaring exception.

Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father: prepare to die.

As you wish.

Inconceivable!

Have fun stormin' da castle.


And surely a quote or two from the Lord of the Rings trilogy:

Don’t tell the elf.

No one tosses a dwarf.

Let’s hunt some orc.

There’s something worth fighting for in this world...


And So I married an Axe Murderer.

You've turned into a right sexy wee bastard.

Because he puts an addictive chemical in his chicken that makes ya crave it fortnightly, smartass!

The Queen, The Vatican, The Gettys, The Rothschilds, *and* Colonel Sanders before he went heads up. Oh, I hated the Colonel with is wee *beady* eye! And that smug look on his face, "Oh, you're gonna buy my chicken! Ohhhhh!"

Would ya look at the size of that kid's head! It's the size of a planetoid and it has it's own weather system! Looks like an orange on a toothpick!

I'm not kidding, that boy's head is like Sputnik; spherical but quite pointy at parts! Aye, now that was offsides, now wasn't it? He'll be crying himself to sleep tonight, on his huge pillow.


I'm sure there's more.
 
Princess Bride. Yeah, classic lines in that one, for sure. "Oooh, look who's so smart. Turns out, your friend is only mostly dead." "No one goes in against a Sicilian when death is on the line. Hah ha, ha ha..." [clunk as he falls over dead].

LOTR? Maybe. It's a bit new yet to know if any of those quotes stand the test of time. "No one tosses a dwarf" is pretty good, and Sam has some good speeches. Time will tell.
 
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