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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

#16: The Mt. Rushmore Series

Which four lines of movie dialogue are indelibly carved into your brain? I'm embarrassed to admit limiting myself to four requires super-human effort but respect the parameters I must. Mine are listed in approximate chronological order of release date of the film.

1.) "Is it safe?" From the day I heard Laurence Olivier repeatedly ask Dustin Hoffman that question, I have never once heard a dentist's drill and not thought of that scene from "Marathon Man".

2.) "As you wish"  "The Princess Bride" is brimming with memorable lines ("My name is Inigo Montoya..." "It's inconceivable!", etc.), many lifted directly from William Goldman's book. But has anyone ever topped "As you wish" as a euphemism for "I love you"? At the end of the film, when Peter Falk says those magic words to his grandson (a pre-"Wonder Years" Fred Savage), who but the cold-blooded can resist tears?

3.) "What separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize"  I never said the line had to come from a great movie. I've quoted this gem (might even have pretended a few times it was my own) from "Steel Magnolias" more times than any other line of movie dialogue with the exception of  "What we have here is a failure to communicate". So at present, Strother Martin is slightly ahead of Olympia Dukakis.

4.) "Whatcha got in the chippa?" Joel & Ethan Coen have created so many quirky characters. But for a memorable line, it's very normal sheriff Frances McDormand's deadpan question in "Fargo" that goes on my Mt. Rushmore. I purposefully didn't Google the name of the actor who plays the lunatic she's speaking to. But he's just as creepy as the character Javier Bardem played in "No Country For Old Men", wouldn't you agree? Those Coen Brothers get the weirdos so right.

Though I cheated and slipped in a few extras here, give this nerd a break OK? Besides, now it's you turn.      
  

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