Top 5 – Quotable Films

This week recurring guest Nye Rees returns to Shuggie Says. Now everyone loves to quote their favourite films and there are so many lines of dialogue that have become completely iconic. To celebrate this Nye Rees and I are picking what we think are the Top 5 most quotable films of all time.

Number 5:

  • Shuggie: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope – Star Wars may seem like an odd choice for a most quotable list, with its Sci-Fi terminology and talk of mystical fantasy forces, but that’s just how big Star Wars is. It has essentially created its own vernacular that is now used by people. It was a toss up between Episode IV and the incredible The Empire Strikes Back, but I’ve decided to go for the original. Of course there is the truly iconic line “May the force be with you” but Star Wars has so much more to offer in the quotes world. Lines like “These aren’t the droids your looking for”, “That’s no moon”, “I’ve got a bad feeling about this”, and “Going Into Tosche Station To Pick Up Some Power Converters” have entered general use. OK, maybe not that last one, but you get what I’m saying.
  • Nye: Forrest Gump – Of course, this film contains at least two memorable quotes; ‘My mama always said life was like a box of chocolates…’ and ‘Run, Forrest, run!’ These are quotes that I hear almost on a daily basis and although they get thrown around a lot, they hold quite a substantially positive sentiment. But the thing that makes them so iconic is that these are the moments you watch the film for. They no longer seem integrated into the film, but have become their own little spectacle.

Number 4:

  • Shuggie: Monty Python and the Holy Grail – I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, but Monty Python and the Holy Grail is the funniest film ever made. I love to quote it regularly. From insults like “Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of Elderberries”, to political views like “strange women lying in ponds is no basis for a system of government”, to the completely ridiculous “What the curtains?” (I’m strangely fond of that one). The only reason that The Holy Grail can’t claim a higher spot on this list is just how absurd most of the quotes are, meaning they’re hard to get into every day life, not that it will stop me from telling everyone who will listen that “A moose once bit my sister”.
  • Nye: Step Brothers – In this film Will Ferrell and John C. Riley throw one quote after the next between each other throughout. I’m sure most have heard the ‘having so much room for activities’ reference at one point or another as well as hearing the film’s recognised song, ‘Boats and Hoes’. Like several Ferrell films, this one has some really memorable one-liners that are predominantly improvised during filming; the fact that they stick makes the number of quotable lines all the more impressive. And I can’t forget to mention ‘it’s the f***ing Catalina Wine Mixer’!

Number 3:

  • Shuggie: Airplane! – The fact that “I am serious… and don’t call me Shirley” is still one of the most overused jokes to this day, some 37 years later, would be enough to qualify Airplane! for a spot in this list. But there are so many absurdist jokes and general ridiculousness that it offers plenty of opportunity for quotes. The “looks like I picked the wrong week to quit…” gag is always great for a stressful situation and the captains “you ever seen…” lines to Joey are great to just drop into random conversations. There are so many classic jokes that variants of can be found in Airplane! that it has more than earned a high spot of this list. “And that, as much as anything else, led to my drinking problem”.
  • Nye: Monty Python and the Holy Grail – Now, Monty Python have a plethora of quotable work. But this film undeniably has quotes that, 42 years after its release, still get thrown around: ‘it’s just a flesh wound’, ‘nasty, big, pointy teeth’, or even ‘ni’. They even managed to turn a non-sensical sound into a commonly repeated quote. This is why Monty Python still stand as one of Britain’s greatest ever assets to comedy and, without a doubt, they have earned that title.

Number 2:

  • Shuggie: Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy – I kind of look at Anchorman as the Airplane! of this generation. Instead of satirising a film genre it is satirising television journalism. But the most important aspect of the film is it’s complete silliness and an insane amount of quotable lines. Ron Burgundy alone is one of the most quotable characters of all time, “I’m kind of a big deal” remains a classic of bad pick lines” and “It’s so hot, milk was a bad choice” is a personal favourite. When you add in characters like Brick, Brian, and Champ you have a masterpiece of a quotable film.
  • Nye: The Shining – From ‘Redrum’ to ‘All work and no play…’ to ‘Here’s Johnny’, this film is seething with quotes that are reflective of its ingenious writing. These quotes contribute to the shaping of the story and are so iconic that people who have never seen the film, I’m sure will have heard them at some point in their lifetime and wondered who Johnny was. What’s most impressive is the number of lines Kubrick’s psychological horror came up with and even nearly 40 years on are just as prominently referenced everyday.

Number 1:

  • Shuggie: Mean Girls – It has to be the number one quotable film for anyone of my generation. Mean Girls is one of the funniest, well written, and most quotable you will ever come across. People still use “that’s so fetch” or declare, “On Wednesdays we wear pink”. People still celebrate October 3rd and despite the fact that the chances of knowing a Glenn Coco are very minimal “You go Glenn Coco” remains in as popular use as ever. I cannot wait for my generation to be old enough to have teenage kids and pull out “I’m not like a regular mom, I’m a cool mom”. I haven’t even scratched the surface of the best lines from Tina Fey’s Screenplay, because there are so many great quotes that you can use in everyday conversation.
  • Nye: Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy – Another Ferrell film and this one almost seems like a no-brainer to me. I could list all the great quotes from this film, but then I might as well be dictating the whole movie to you. This is one of my favourite comedy films purely for its total stupidity and quotes from this film could be used completely out of context and still have you laughing. One reason why the vast number of quotes from this film that stick with you is so impressive is that they are delivered by even the most unassuming characters in the film, such as ‘It smells like Bigfoot’s d***’. Even the extras with one-liners make the cut. In addition to the quotes I know, I also notice new punchlines or one-liners every time I re-watch the film. If you haven’t got a quote from Anchorman in your head then you haven’t seen the film and you certainly don’t have the right friends.

Those are what we think are the most quotable films of all time. What do you think of our choice? Are there any films you love to quote? Let us know in the comments.

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