Best Film Speeches
and Monologues

2004


Best Film Speeches and Monologues
Film Title/Year and Description of Film Speech/Monologue
Screenshots

Mean Girls (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Tina Fey

In the High School Cafeteria, "Beware of the Plastics"

Home-schooled Cady Heron (Lindsay Lohan), a new girl at North Shore High School, was instructed by tough-girl Janis Ian (Lizzy Caplan) about the various cliques in the school cafeteria. She was given a map of the lunchroom showing where each stereotyped group sat. She was specifically warned about not sitting with the A-list clique of Plastics, composed of gossipy brunette Gretchen (Lacey Chabert), innocent ditzy blonde follower Karen (Amanda Seyfried), and bitchy blonde Regina (Rachel McAdams):

Here, this map is gonna to be your guide to North Shore. Now, where you sit in the cafeteria is crucial because you got everybody there. You got your freshmen, ROT-C guys, preps, J.V. jocks, Asian nerds, Cool Asians, Varsity jocks, Unfriendly black hotties, Girls who eat their feelings, Girls who don't eat anything, Desperate wannabes, Burnouts, Sexually-active band geeks, the Greatest people you will ever meet, and the Worst. Beware of the Plastics.





Million Dollar Baby (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Paul Haggis

I Want to Box - "This is the Only Thing I Ever Felt Good Doin'"

Even with a life of hardship, scrappy white-trash waitress Maggie Fitzgerald (Hilary Swank) insisted to her reluctant trainer Frankie Dunn (Clint Eastwood), on her 32nd birthday, that she had the fortitude to box. Finally, Frankie agreed to take her on and train her, beginning on her birthday:

I'm 32, Mr. Dunn. And I'm here celebratin' the fact that I spent another year scrapin' dishes and waitressin' which is what I've been doin' since 13. And according to you, I'll be 37 'fore I can even throw a decent punch, which I have to admit, after workin' on this speed bag for a month and getting nowhere, may be the God's simple truth. Other truth is, my brother's in prison, my sister cheats on welfare by pretendin' one of her babies is still alive, my daddy's dead, and my momma weighs 312 pounds. If I was thinkin' straight, I'd go back home, find a used trailer, buy a deep fryer and some Oreos.

Problem is, this is the only thing I ever felt good doin'. If I'm too old for this, then I got nothin'. That enough truth to suit you?


Napoleon Dynamite (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Jared Hess, Jerusha Hess

Lesson on Rex Kwon Do

Local martial arts instructor Rex (Diedrich Bader), dressed in a red-white-blue flag outfit - matching American flag pants and bandana, spoke to his students:

My name is Rex. If you study with my eight-week program, you will learn the system of self-defense that I developed over two seasons fighting in the Octagon. It's called Rex Kwon Do. I need a volunteer...

Now, in addition to what you just saw, if you study with my eight-week program, you're gonna learn these things. First off, at Rex Kwon Do, we use the buddy system. No more flyin' solo. You need somebody watchin' your back at all times. Second off, you're gonna learn to discipline your image. You think I got where I am today because I dressed like Peter Pan here? Take a look at what I'm wearin', people. You think anybody wants a roundhouse kick to the face while I'm wearing these bad boys? Forget about it. Last off, my students will learn about self respect. Do you think anybody thinks I'm a failure because I go home to Starla at night? [He pointed at a photo of his wife, a blonde, tan, muscular body-builder.] Forget about it! Now, for only $300 dollars, you can sign up right now for my eight-week program.


The Notebook (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Jeremy Leven

"Don't You Take The Easy Way Out!" - "What Do You Want?!"

Facing a big life decision about their future together in the 1940s, Noah Calhoun (Ryan Gosling) claimed that his sweetheart Allie Hamilton (Rachel McAdams) was bored with her life, and shouldn't marry her fiancee Lon Hammond (James Marsden) only for his money and for security. He believed that there was "something missing" in her life with Lon. He also asserted that fighting between them was very real, because having a long-term relationship was "gonna be really hard":

Well, that's what we do. We fight. You tell me when I am being an arrogant son of a bitch and I tell you when you are being a pain in the ass - which you are, 99% of the time. I'm not afraid to hurt your feelings. You have like a two second rebound rate, and you're back doing the next pain-in-the-ass thing...So it's not gonna be easy. It's gonna be really hard. We're gonna have to work at this every day, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, you and me, every day. Will you do something for me, please? Just picture your life for me? 30 years from now, 40 years from now? What's it look like? If it's with that guy, go. Go! I lost you once, I think I could do it again, if I thought it's what you really wanted. But don't you take the easy way out.

When she responded: "What easy way? There is no easy way, no matter what I do, somebody gets hurt," he yelled back at her:

Would you stop thinking about what everyone wants? Stop thinking about what I want, what he wants, what your parents want. What do you want? What do you want?...What do you want? Whaddaya want?




The Notebook (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Jeremy Leven

A Goodbye Letter, Describing "The Best Love"

A thoroughly distraught and conflicted Allie Hamilton (Rachel McAdams) drove away from the house of sweetheart Noah Calhoun (Ryan Gosling) after an argument between them. She read a goodbye letter he had written to her where he described his idea of "the best love" - heard in voice-over:

My Dearest Allie.
I couldn't sleep last night because I know that it's over between us.
I'm not bitter anymore, because I know that what we had was real. And if in some distant place in the future we see each other in our new lives, I'll smile at you with joy and remember how we spent the summer beneath the trees, learning from each other and growing in love. The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds, and that's what you've given me. That's what I hope to give to you forever. I love you. I'll be seeing you. Noah

As the camera panned up as she finished the letter, it was revealed to be in the present day, where elderly Noah (James Garner) was reading the notebook account of their own love affair years earler, to his dementia-suffering life partner Allie Calhoun (Gena Rowlands).




The Phantom of the Opera (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Andrew Lloyd Webber, Joel Schumacher

"Beyond the Point of No Return"

The masked Phantom (Gerard Butler), a disfigured musical genius, sang to his beautiful young soprano protege Christine Daae (Emmy Rossum) on stage during a performance of Don Juan Triumphant:

You have come here, in pursuit of your deepest urge. In pursuit of that wish which 'til now has been silent. Silent! I have brought you, that our passions may fuse and merge. In your mind you've already succumbed to me. Dropped all defenses, completely succumbed to me. Now you are here with me. No second thoughts. You've decided. Decided!

Past the point of no return. No backward glances. Our games of make-believe are at an end! Past all thought of if or when. No use resisting. Abandon thought and let the dream descend! What raging fire shall flood the soul? What rich desire unlocks its door? What sweet seduction lies before us? Past the point of no return. The final threshold. What warm unspoken secrets will we learn? Beyond the point of no return!




Spider-Man 2 (2004)
Screenwriter(s): Alvin Sargent

"Everybody Loves a Hero"

After Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire) had suffered a series of personal setbacks, including the loss of his girlfriend Mary Jane Watson (Kirsten Dunst) to another man, estrangement from best friend Harry Osborn (James Franco), and the sudden loss of his own superhero powers, he decided to live his own life and give up being crime-fighting Spider-Man.

His Aunt May (Rosemary Harris) encouraged him to reconsider, reminding him about the importance of heroes in life, especially since young neighbor boy Henry Jackson (Jason Fiore-Ortiz) had become sad about Spider-Man's disappearance:

He knows a hero when he sees one. Too few characters out there, flying around like that, saving old girls like me. And Lord knows, kids like Henry need a hero. Courageous, self-sacrificing people setting examples for all of us. Everybody loves a hero. People line up for 'em. Cheer them. Scream their names. And years later, they'll tell how they stood in the rain for hours just to get a glimpse of the one who taught them to hold on a second longer.

I believe there's a hero in all of us that keeps us honest, gives us strength, makes us noble, and finally allows us to die with pride. Even though sometimes we have to be steady and give up the thing we want the most. Even our dreams. Spider-Man did that for Henry and he wonders where he's gone. He needs him.


Best Film Speeches and Monologues
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