It’s not just Shakespeare who writes brilliant monologues!
Some of these scenes contain #SPOILERS so don’t watch if you are worried about ruining a film you might enjoy at a later date.
Very often a great speech or a monologue in a movie is what really cements it in people’s minds.
If you mention Pulp Fiction then people may quote back to you Jules’ speech:
Or it could mean you’re the righteous man and I’m the shepherd and it’s the world that’s evil and selfish. Now I’d like that. But that shit ain’t the truth. The truth is you’re the weak. And I’m the tyranny of evil men. But I’m tryin’, Ringo. I’m tryin’ real hard to be a shepherd.
Mention A Few Good Men and it is very likely that you will have the classic ‘Truth’ speech quoted back at you:
You can’t handle the truth! Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Who’s gonna do it? You? You, Lieutenant Weinberg? I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom.
When great writing and brilliant acting come together we have some moments in film which are truly unforgettable.
Here are five of my favourites.
Johnny Depp in Blow
Y’know, I remember a lifetime ago I was about three and a half feet tall, weighing only sixty pounds, but every inch your son. Those Saturday mornings, going to work with my dad and we’d pile into that big, green truck. I thought that truck was the… was the biggest truck in the universe, Pop. I remember how important the job we did was. How, if it weren’t for us, people would freeze to death.
I thought you were the strongest man in the world.
Remember those home movies, when Mom would dress up like Loretta Young?
Ice creams, football games, playing hook the tuna, the day I left for California only to come home with the FBI chasing me, that FBI Agent Trout… When he had to get on his knees to put my boots on, you said, “That’s where you belong, you sonofab!*ch, puttin on Georgie’s boots.”
That was a good one, Dad. That was really something. You remember that?
And that time you told me that money wasn’t real?
Well, old man, I’m 42 years old and I’ve finally realised what you were trying to tell me too many years ago. I finally understand.
You’re the best, Dad.
I just wish I could’ve done more for you. Wish we had more time. Anyway, may the wind always be at your back, and the sun always upon your face, and the winds of destiny to carry you aloft, to dance with the stars.
I love you, Dad.
Michael Shannon in The Iceman
“I never felt sorry for anything I done… other than hurting my family.
The only thing I feel sorry for.
I’m not looking for forgiveness. I’m not repenting. I know I’m wrong.
I do want my family to forgive me.
Ain’t going to make this one.
This would never be me.
This would not be me.
You see the Iceman crying?
Not very macho.
But I hurt people… that mean everything to me. But the only people that mean anything to me.”
Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption
Well, now, let me see.
You know, I don’t have any idea what that means. I know what you think it means, sonny.
To me, it’s just a made up word. A politician’s word, sonny. Young fellas like yourself can wear a suit and a tie and have a job.
What do you really want to know?
Am I sorry for what I did?
There’s not a day goes by I don’t feel regret. Not because I’m in here. Because you think I should. I look back on the way I was then. A young, stupid kid who committed that terrible crime. I want to talk to him. I want to try to talk some sense to him. Tell him the way things are.
But I can’t.
That kid’s long gone and this old man’s all that’s left.
I got to live with that.
Rehabilitated? That’s just a bullshit word. So you go on and stamp your form, sonny, and stop wasting my time.
Because, to tell you the truth, I don’t give a shit.”
Sean Astin in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
“I know. It’s all wrong. By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are.
It’s like in the great stories Mr. Frodo, the ones that really mattered.
Full of darkness and danger they were, and sometimes you didn’t want to know the end because how could the end be happy?
How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened?
But in the end it’s only a passing thing this shadow, even darkness must pass.
A new day will come, and when the sun shines it’ll shine out the clearer.
Those were the stories that stayed with you, that meant something even if you were too small to understand why.
But I think Mr. Frodo, I do understand, I know now folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t.
They kept going because they were holding on to something.”
Edward Norton in 25th Hour
This powerful speech delivered by Edward Norton is too full of ‘effing and jeffing’ as my mother would say to put the script here!
For the full transcript of this speech please visit The Cult – Chuck Palahniuk