Best Film Speeches and Monologues
|Film Title/Year and Description of Film Speech/Monologue
Screenwriter(s): Scott Rosenberg
Beautiful Girl Can Make You Dizzy"
Paul Kirkwood (Michael Rapaport) was rapturous
about "supermodels" and "beautiful girls" that
surrounded him - pinups tacked on the wall:
Supermodels are beautiful girls, Will. A
beautiful girl can make you dizzy, like you've been drinkin'
Jack and Coke all morning. She can make you feel high -
full of the single greatest commodity known to man - promise.
Promise of a better day. Promise of a greater hope. Promise
of a new tomorrow. This particular aura can be found in
the gait of a beautiful girl. In her smile, and in her
soul, and the way she makes every rotten little thing about
life seem like it's gonna be okay. The supermodels, Willy?
That's all they are. Bottled promise. Scenes from a brand
new day. Hope dancing in stiletto heels.
Beautiful Girls (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Scott Rosenberg
Are Not Real Women, All Right?"
Gina Barrisano (Rosie O'Donnell) delivered a
tirade to Tommy "Birdland" Rowland (Matt Dillon)
and Willie Conway (Timothy Hutton). She spoke out about the
portrayal of unreal women in the media, men's magazines, etc,
as compared to real women. It was a running dialogue as they
crossed the street and entered a store:
Hey, you're both f--kin' insane. You wanna
know what your problem is? MTV, Playboy, and Madison
f--king Avenue. Yes. Let me explain something to you, OK?
Girls with big tits have big asses, girls with little tits
have little asses. That's the way it goes. God doesn't
f--k around, he's a fair guy. He gave the fatties big,
beautiful tits and the skinnies little, tiny niddlers.
It's not my rule. If you don't like it, call them... Oh,
guys, look what we have here. (She picked up and looked
at a Penthouse Magazine) Look at this, your favorite. Oh,
you like that?...Yeah, that's nice, right? Well, it doesn't
exist, OK. Look at the hair. The hair is long, it's flowing,
it's like a river. Well, it's a f--kin' weave, OK? And
the tits, please! I could hang my overcoat on them. Tits,
by design, were invented to be suckled by babies. Yes,
they're purely functional. These are silicon city. And
look, my favorite, the shaved pubis. Pubic hair being so
unruly and all. Very key.
This is a mockery, this is a sham, this is
bulls--t. Implants, collagen, plastic, capped teeth, the
fat sucked out, the hair extended, the nose fixed, the bush
shaved...These are not real women, all right? They're beauty
freaks. And they make all us normal women with our wrinkles,
our puckered boobs - hi Bob - our cellulite, feel somehow
inadequate. Well, I don't buy it, all right? But you f--kin'
mooks, you think if there's a chance in hell that you'll
end up with one of these women, you don't give us real women
anything approaching a commitment. It's pathetic. I don't
know what you think you're gonna do. You're gonna end up
eighty-years old, drooling in some nursing home, then you're
gonna decide, it's time to settle down, get married, have
kids? What, are you gonna find a cheerleader?...
Look at Paul. With his models on the wall,
his dog named Elle McPherson. He's insane. He's obsessed.
You're all obsessed. If you had an ounce of self-esteem,
of self-worth, of self-confidence, you would realize that
as trite as it may sound, beauty is truly skin-deep. And
you know what, if you ever did hook one of those girls, I
guarantee you'd be sick of her... No matter how perfect the
nipple, how supple the thigh, unless there's some other s--t
going on in the relationship besides the physical, it's gonna
get old, OK? And you guys, as a gender, have got to get a
grip. Otherwise, the future of the human race is in jeopardy.
City Hall (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Ken Lipper, Paul Schrader, Nicholas Pileggi, Bo
Choose to Fight Back!"
Play clip (excerpt):
New York Mayor John Pappas (Al Pacino) delivered
the eulogy during a service for an accidentally-slain 6 year-old
New York black boy named James Bone, an innocent victim caught
in crossfire between a paroled drug dealer and a NYPD cop in
a North Brooklyn street shooting:
I was warned not to come here. I was warned.
They warned me: 'Don't stand behind that coffin.' But why
should I heed such a warning, when a heartbeat is silent
and a child lies dead? 'Don't stand behind this coffin.'
That boy was as pure and as innocent as the driven snow.
But I must stand here because I have not given
you what you should have. Until we can walk abroad and
recreate ourselves, until we can stroll along the streets
like boulevards, congregate in parks free from fear, our
families mingling, our children laughing, our hearts joined
- until that day, we have no city. You can label me a failure
until that day. The first and perhaps only great mayor
was Greek. He was Pericles of Athens, and he lived some
2,500 years ago, and he said: 'All things good of this
Earth flow into the City, because of the City's greatness.'
Well, we were great once. Can we not be great again?
Now, I put that question to James Bone, and
there's only silence. Yet could not something pass from this
sweet youth to me? Could he not empower me to find in myself
the strength to have the knowledge to summon up the courage
to accomplish this seemingly insurmountable task of making
a city livable? Just livable. There was a palace that was
a city. It was a palace! It was a palace, and it can be a
palace again! A palace, in which there is no king or queen,
or dukes or earls or princes, but subjects all. Subjects
beholden to each other, to make a better place to live. Is
that too much to ask?... Are we asking too much for this?...Is
it beyond our reach?... Because if it is, then we are nothing
but sheep being herded to the final slaughterhouse! I will
not go down, that way! I choose to fight back! I choose to
rise, not fall! I choose to live, not die! And I know, I
know that what's within me is also within you. That's why
I ask you now to join me. Join me, rise up with me, rise
up on the wings of this slain angel...We'll rebuild on the
soul of this little warrior. We will pick up his standard
and raise it high! Carry it forward until this city - your
city - our city - his city - is a palace of God! Is a palace
of God! I am with you, little James. I am you.
He kissed the coffin.
Screenwriter(s): David Cronenberg
a Benevolent Psychopathology That Beckons Towards Us"
In David Cronenberg's coldly-erotic, dark and
disturbing NC-17 rated drama that examined the lives of a subculture
of individuals who had passionate sexual fetishes about deadly
car crashes, crash-enthusiast leader Vaughan (Elias Koteas)
described his philosophy (and next project) to recently-scarred
and injured accident victim James Ballard (James Spader). Vaughan
was driving, while passenger Ballard was looking at car-crash
photographs, and commenting: "It's all very satisfying.
I'm not sure I understand why." Vaughan replied:
That's the future, Ballard, and you're already
a part of it. You're beginning to see that for the first
time, there's a benevolent psychopathology that beckons
towards us. For example, the car crash is a fertilizing
rather than a destructive event. A liberation of sexual
energy, mediating the sexuality of those who have died
with an intensity that's impossible in any other form.
Now, to experience that, to live that, that's my project.
The Crucible (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Arthur Miller
Proctor's Witchcraft Confession and Refusal ("Because
It Is My Name!")
In the 17th century, when accused of witchcraft
by judges in the town led by Judge Thomas Danforth (Paul Scofield),
John Proctor (Daniel Day-Lewis) was forced to sign a proclamation
to be publicly displayed, to legally prove his guilt and to
convince others to confess - and to save himself from the gallows.
But he angrily refused after signing, angrily tore up the false
confession - and vowed to keep his good name pure:
You are the high court. Your word is good
enough. Tell them Proctor broke to his knees and wept like
a woman. My, my name I cannot sign...I mean to deny nothing...Because
it is my name! Because I cannot have another in my life!
Because I lie and sign myself to lies! Because I am not
worth the dust on the feet of them you have hanged! I have
given you my soul. Leave me my name!
In defiance, Proctor tore up the confession,
dooming him to be sentenced to hang, with his reputation intact.
The English Patient (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Anthony Minghella
Waiting For You" - Katharine's Letter
After a plane crash, seriously-injured Katharine
Clifton (Kristin Scott Thomas) - in the midst of a passionate
affair with geographer Count Laszlo de Almásy (Ralph
Fiennes) (aka The English Patient) - was taken to a cave where
the Count promised that he would soon return, after a 3-day
trek to Cairo to secure help. She wrote to him before dying
in the darkness of the cave before he could save her.
in the film, the Count's French-Canadian nurse Hana (Juliette
Binoche) read Katharine's letter (during a flashback, with
both Hana's and Katharine's voices) to the critically-burned
Count who also suffered burns from his own plane crash soon
after Katharine's death. He requested two things of Hana -
a morphine overdose to be administered, and the words "Read
me to sleep" - the reading of Katharine's letter before
she died as he also slipped away to death to join her:
[Hana] My darling, I'm waiting for you. How
long is the day in the dark? Or a week? The fire is gone
now, and I'm horr- horribly cold. [Katharine] I really
ought to drag myself outside, but then there'd be the sun.
I'm afraid I waste the light on the paintings and on writing
these words. We die. [Hana] We die. We die rich with lovers
and tribes, tastes we have swallowed, bodies we have entered
and swum up like rivers. [Katharine] Fears we've hidden
in, like this wretched cave. I want all this marked on
my body. We're the real countries. Not the boundaries drawn
on maps, the names of powerful men. I know you'll come
and carry me out into the palace of winds. That's all I've
wanted, to walk in such a place with you, with friends.
An Earth without maps. [Hana] The lamp's gone out and I'm
writing in the darkness.
Screenwriter(s): Ethan Coen, Joel Coen
a Beautiful Day"
Pregnant police chief Marge Gunderson (Oscar-winning
Frances McDormand) expressed her weariness, disappointment,
and bitterness at captured murderer/kidnapper
Gaear Grimsrud (Peter Stormare), who was handcuffed in the
back of her police car:
So that was Mrs. Lundegaard on the floor
in there. And I guess that was your accomplice in the wood
chipper. And those three people in Brainerd. And for what?
For a little bit of money. There's more to life than a
little money, you know. Don't you know that? And here ya
are, and it's a beautiful day. Well, I just don't understand
From Dusk Till Dawn
Screenwriter(s): Quentin Tarantino
Kinds of Pussies
Play clip (excerpt):
Barker Chet Pussy (Cheech Marin) gave a sales
pitch to customers about the varieties of pussies available
for purchase at the Mexican nightclub The Titty Twister - open
from dusk to dawn:
All right, pussy, pussy, pussy! Come on
in pussy lovers! Here at the Titty Twister we're slashing
pussy in half! Give us an offer on our vast selection of
pussy. This is a pussy blow out! All right, we got white
pussy, black pussy, Spanish pussy, yellow pussy, we got
hot pussy, cold pussy, we got wet pussy, we got [sniffs]
smelly pussy, we got hairy pussy, bloody pussy, we got
snappin' pussy, we got silk pussy, velvet pussy, Naugahyde
pussy, we even got horse pussy, dog pussy, chicken pussy!
Come on, you want pussy, come on in, pussy lovers! If we
don't got it, you don't want it! Come on in, pussy lovers!...
Independence Day (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Dean Devlin, Roland Emmerich
Play clip (excerpt):
President Thomas J. Whitmore (Bill Pullman)
delivered a speech to US fighter pilot crews before their final
Good morning. In less than an hour, aircraft
from here will join others from around the world. And you
will be launching the largest aerial battle in the history
of mankind. Mankind - that word should have new meaning
for all of us today. We can't be consumed by our petty
differences anymore. We will be united in our common interests.
Perhaps it's fate that today is the 4th of July, and you
will once again be fighting for our freedom. Not from tyranny,
oppression, or persecution, but from annihilation. We're
fighting for our right to live, to exist. And should we
win the day, the 4th of July will no longer be known as
an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared
in one voice: 'We will not go quietly into the night!'
'We will not vanish without a fight!' 'We're going to live
on!' 'We're going to survive!' Today we celebrate our Independence
Screenwriter(s): James DeMonaco, Gary Nadeau
Play clip (excerpt):
Suffering from Werner syndrome, an aging disease
(at 17 years old, he looked like he was 68), elderly-looking
Jack Charles Powell (Robin Williams) gave the valedictorian
high school graduation speech, urging his classmates to make
their lives "spectacular":
I got it, Eric. I'm cool...my speech. I
don't have very much time these days, so I'll make it quick,
like my life. You know, as we come to the end of this phase
of our life, we find ourselves trying to remember the good
times and trying to forget the bad times. And we find ourselves
thinking about the future. We start to worry, thinking:
'What am I gonna do? Where am I gonna be in ten years?'
But I say to you: 'Hey, look at me.' Please, don't worry
so much 'cause in the end none of us have very long on
this earth. Life is fleeting. And if you're ever distressed,
cast your eyes to the summer sky, when the stars are strung
across the velvety night, and when a shooting star streaks
through the blackness turning night into day. Make a wish
think of me. And make your life spectacular. I know I did.
I made it, Mom. I'm a grown-up. Thank you.
Jerry Maguire (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Cameron Crowe
Maguire's Mission Statement ("It Was the Me I'd Always
Wanted To Be") - Be Client-Driven Rather Than Money-Driven
Suffering from stress, guilt, and burnout, 35
year-old Sports Management International (SMI) sports promoter
Jerry Maguire (Tom Maguire) had a revelation or "breakthrough" about
his life, and he produced a 25 page mission statement - described
in the film's opening voice-over under the credits. Unfortunately,
his statement got him fired:
Who had I become? Just another shark in
a suit? Two days later at our corporate conference in Miami,
a breakthrough. Breakdown? Breakthrough. I couldn't escape
one simple thought: I hated myself. No, no, no, here's
what it was: I hated my place in the world. I had so much
to say and no one to listen. And then it happened. It was
the oddest, most unexpected thing. I began writing what
they call a mission statement. Not a memo, a mission statement.
You know, a suggestion for the future of our company. A
night like this doesn't come along very often. I seized
it. What started out as one page became twenty-five. Suddenly,
I was my father's son again. I was remembering the simple
pleasures of this job, how I ended up here out of law school,
the way a stadium sounds when one of my players performs
well on the field. The way we are meant to protect them
in health and in injury. With so many clients, we had forgotten
what was important.
I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote and I'm
not even a writer. I was remembering even the words of the
original sports agent, my mentor, the late great Dickie Fox
who said: 'The key to this business is personal relationships.'
Suddenly, it was all pretty clear. The answer was fewer clients.
Less money. More attention. Caring for them, caring for ourselves
and the games, too. Just starting our lives, really. Hey
- I'll be the first to admit, what I was writing was somewhat
touchy feely. I didn't care. I have lost the ability to bulls--t.
It was the me I'd always wanted to be. I took it in a bag
to a Copymat in the middle of the night and printed up a
hundred and ten copies. Even the cover looked like The
Catcher in the Rye. I entitled it 'The Things We Think
and Do Not Say: The Future of Our Business.'...Everybody
got a copy...I was 35. I had started my life.
Jerry Maguire (1996)
Screenwriter(s): Cameron Crowe
Speech - and "Who's Coming With Me?"
Play clip (excerpt):
Sports promoter Jerry Maguire (Tom Cruise) lectured
his co-workers regarding proper manners as he exited the office:
Well, don't worry. Don't worry. I'm not
gonna do what you all think I'm gonna do, which is just
Flip Out! But let me just, let me just say, as I ease out
of the office I helped build - I'm sorry, but it's a Fact!
- - that there is such a thing as manners, a way of treating
people. (He then referred to an aquarium fish tank in
the office) These fish have manners. These fish have
manners. In fact, they're coming with me. I'm starting
a new company, and the fish will come with me. You can
call me sentimental. The fish - they're coming with me.
(Jerry netted one of the gold fishes and
placed it inside a clear baggie)
Okay. If anybody else wants to come with me,
this moment will be the moment of something real and fun and
inspiring in this God-forsaken business, and we will do it
together. Who's comin' with me? Who's coming with me? Who's
coming with me besides 'Flipper' here? This is embarrassing.
Only 26 year-old single mother Dorothy Boyd (Renee
Zellweger) responded and was willing to join him: "I will
go with you" (but then when she was uncertain about things,
she whispered: "Right now?")