Monday, August 20, 2007

Rating Game Redux 13: These Lists Just Got a Whole Lot More Impossibler

So, the Register-Mail call went out: "Three Best Movie Lines." That's right, for once a no-brainer. All I needed to do was wade through eighty-plus years of talkies and emerge with three little lines that once and for all closed the case.


What could I do? I chose at random--although one had been a part of my email signature for a few years, and another is one of two great lines from Unforgiven--the other being, "Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."--while the Raging Bull mantra really is among my actual favorites; it reminds me of the contrarian insistence that the best Shakespeare line is poor King Lear's five "never"s at the end of everything--his wits, his life, the play, and all.

On a personal note, there's also the list of friends' favorite lines, the ones they've latched onto in their own quirky responses to movies. My favorite of these is Stephe's, who, despite all the justly famous lines of Casablanca, prefers Rick's comment when Sascha kisses him after Rick lets the young refugee win so that his girl won't have to sleep with Captain Renault: "Crazy Russian!" So best be damned; these are simply some that have stayed in my head, long after the more quotable quotes have slipped into, if I can manage the phrase, enervating ubiquity.

From the final scene of Raging Bull (1980):
Jake LaMotta: “I'm the boss, I'm the boss, I'm the boss, I'm the boss, I'm the boss ... ”
(Greek tragedy, middleweight class.)

From Unforgiven (1992):
The Schofield Kid (Jaimz Woolvett) on seeing a man die: “I guess he had it coming.”
Will Munny (Clint Eastwood): “We all got it coming, kid.”
(Judgment Day, with a squint.)

From Plan 9 from Outer Space (1959):
The Amazing Criswell: “We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember, my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.”
(It’s funny because it’s true.)

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