Best Film Speeches
and Monologues


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

Leaving Las Vegas (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Mike Figgis

"Then I Could Fall In Love With You" - A Sexual Fantasy

Alcoholic Hollywood screenwriter Ben Sanderson (Nicolas Cage) gave a liquor-soaked reverie while being strung-out and needing a drink. At a bank, he was unable to sign a check in front of a pretty blonde bank teller (Carey Lowell) that he wanted to ask out to dinner. After having a few drinks at lunch, he returned to the bank, and confidently spoke into a hand-held recorder, trying to charm the blonde again (in an imaginary fantasy, dreaming that he was appealing to her). However, she declined his invitation, and shortly later, he was fired from his job for his addiction:

Are you desirable? Are you irresistible? Maybe if you drank bourbon with me, it would help. Maybe if you kissed me and I could taste the sting in your mouth it would help. If you drank bourbon with me naked. If you smelled of bourbon as you f--ked me, it would help. It would increase my esteem for you. If you poured bourbon onto your naked body and said to me 'drink this.' If you spread your legs and you had bourbon dripping from your breasts and your pussy and said 'drink here,' then I could fall in love with you. Because then I would have a purpose - to clean you up. And that, that would prove that I'm worth something. I'd lick you clean so that you could go away and f--k someone else.

Mallrats (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Kevin Smith

True Story About a Cat Stuck In One's Ass - To Get the Gerbil Out

Play clip (excerpt): Mallrats

The opening voice-over of comic-book loving mallrat Brodie (Jason Lee) about his cousin Walter:

One time my cousin Walter got this cat stuck in his ass. True story. He bought it at our local mall, so the whole fiasco wound up on the news. It was embarrassing for my relatives and all, but the next week, he did it again. Different cat, same results, complete with another trip to the emergency room. So, I run into him a week later in the mall and he's buying another cat. And I says to him: 'Jesus, Walt! What are you doing? You know you're just gonna get this cat stuck in your ass too. Why don't you knock it off?' And he said to me: 'Brodie, how the hell else am I supposed to get the gerbil out?' My cousin was a weird guy.

Mallrats (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Kevin Smith

A Man of Steel Coital Debate about Superman's Baby

Play clip (excerpt): Mallrats

Later, Brodie (Jason Lee) debated with pal T.S. Quint (Jeremy London) about the impossibility of Lois Lane having Superman's baby:

(But they're engaged.) Doesn't matter, it can't happen...It's impossible, Lois could never have Superman's baby. Do you think her fallopian tubes can handle the sperm? I guarantee he blows a load like a shotgun right through her back. What about her womb? Do you think it's strong enough to carry his child?...He's an alien, for Christ sake. His Kyrptonian biological makeup is enhanced by earth's yellow sun. If Lois gets a tan, the kid could kick right through her stomach. Only someone like Wonder Woman has a strong enough uterus to carry his kid. The only way he could bang regular chicks is with a kryptonite condom. That would kill him.

Nixon (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Stephen J. Rivele, Christopher Wilkinson, Oliver Stone

"You Won't Have Nixon to Kick Around Anymore"

After losing the 1962 California Governor's race to Democratic incumbent Pat Brown, sweaty-faced Nixon (Anthony Hopkins) delivered his memorable concession speech, declaring it was his "last press conference":

I believe Governor Brown has a heart, even though he believes I do not. I believe he's a good American, even though he feels I am not. I'm proud of the fact that I defended my opponent's patriotism. You gentlemen didn't report it, but I'm proud that I did that. And I would appreciate it for once, gentlemen, if you would just print what I say. For sixteen years, ever since the Hiss case, you've had a lot of fun - a lot of fun. But recognize you have a responsibility, if you're against the candidate, to give him the shaft, but if you do that, at least put one lonely reporter on the campaign who will report what the candidate says now and then. I think, all-in-all, I've given as good as I've taken. But as I leave you I-I want you to know -- just think what you're gonna be missing. You won't have Nixon to kick around any more (echoes) - uh, uh, because, gentlemen, this is my last press conference. Thank you and good day.

Nixon (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Stephen J. Rivele, Christopher Wilkinson, Oliver Stone

Farewell Address to White House Staff and Cabinet

Play clip (excerpt): Nixon

Following US President Richard Nixon's fall from power due to the Watergate scandal, he resigned with an address to the country on August 8, 1974 before an impending impeachment, and then delivered an impromptu and emotional farewell address to his closest staff on August 9, 1974:

...There are many fine careers. This country needs good farmers, good businessmen, good plumbers, good carpenters. I remember my old man. I think that they would have called him sort of a, sort of a little man, common man. Well, he didn't consider himself that way. You know what he was? He was a streetcar motorman first. Then he was a farmer, and then he had a lemon ranch. It was the poorest lemon ranch in California, I can assure you. He sold it before they found oil on it. And then he was a grocer. But he was a great man because he did his job, and every job counts, up to the hilt, regardless of what happened. Nobody will ever write a book, probably, about my mother. Well, I guess all of you would say this about your mother. But my mother was a saint. When I think of her two boys dying of tuberculosis, and seeing each of them die, and when they died. Yes, she will have no books written about her. But, she was a saint. Now, however, we look to the future. I remember something, uh, Theodore Roosevelt wrote when his first wife died in his twenties. He thought the light had gone from his life forever. But he went on and he not only became President, but as an ex-President he served his country, always in the arena, tempestuous, strong, sometimes right, sometimes wrong, but he was a man.

And as I leave, that's an example I think all of us should remember. You see, we think sometimes when things happen that don't go the right way, we think that when someone dear to us dies, uh, when we lose an election, or when we suffer defeat, that all is ended. Not true. It's only a beginning, always, because the greatness comes not when things go always good for you, but the greatness comes when you're really tested, when you take some knocks, some disappointments, when sadness comes. Because only if you have been in the deepest valley can you ever know how magnificent it is to be on the highest mountain. So, I say to you on this occasion, we leave, proud of the people who have stood by us and worked for us, and served this government and this country. We want you to continue to serve in government, if that is what you wish. Remember, always give your best. Never get discouraged. Never be petty. And always remember: Others may hate you, but those who hate you don't win unless you hate them, and then, you destroy yourself. And so we leave with high hopes and good spirits and deep humility. And I say to each and every one of you, not only will we always remember you, but always you will be in our hearts, and you will be in our prayers.

Richard III (1995, US/UK)
Screenwriter(s): Ian McKellen, Richard Loncraine

"Now Is The Winter of our Discontent" Speech

The film, set in a fictional 1930s fascist England, opened with a wordless scene. A tank crashed through the war-room headquarters of reigning King Henry VI (Edward Jewesbury) and his troops, where the elderly king and his young son Edward, the Prince of Wales, were murdered by hunchbacked and limping, treacherous and power-lusting Richard III (Ian McKellen) of Gloucester.

The army's commander-in-chief in uniform, Richard III then delivered the ''winter of our discontent'' victory speech into a microphone, a public address before his entire family and guests at a royal Victory Ball, when King Edward IV (John Wood) was on the throne (a pun - "this son of York"), and about to be overthrown:

Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer by this sun of York. And all the clouds that loured upon our house, In the deep bosom of the ocean buried. Now are our brows bound with victorious wreaths. Our bruised arms hung up for monuments. Our stern alarums chang'd to merry meetings, Our dreadful marches to delightful measures. (applause) Grim-visaged war has smoothed his wrinkled front. And now, instead of mounting barbed steads, To fight the souls of fearful adversaries. He -

He finished the monologue mumbling and standing at a lavatory urinal in a stately washroom, and then washed his hands and dried them. After speaking to his own mirrored reflection at the washbasin, he delivered his final line in the washroom by turning and directly addressing the camera:

capers nimbly in a lady's chamber, To the lascivious pleasing of a lute. But I - that am not shap'd for sportive tricks, Nor made to court an amorous looking-glass, I - that am rudely stamped - Deformed, unfinished, sent before my time, Into this breathing world scarce half made up, And that so lamely and unfashionable That dogs bark at me as I halt by them. Why, I, in this weak piping time of peace, Have no delight to pass away the time, Unless to spy my shadow in the sun, And descant on my own deformity. Why I can smile; and murder while I smile; And wet my cheeks with artificial tears, And frame my face to all occasions. (To camera) And, therefore, since I cannot prove a lover, I am determined to prove a villain, And hate the idle pleasures of these days. Plots have I laid, (After leaving the restroom, Richard III was on the walkway of the palace) To set my brothers, Clarence and King Edward, In deadly hate, the one against the other.

Se7en (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Andrew Kevin Walker

"Her Pretty Head"

Play clip (excerpt): Se7en (short)

Serial killer John Doe (Kevin Spacey) admitted his grisly final misdeed to married detective David Mills (Brad Pitt):

I wish I could have lived like you, David...Do you hear me, detective? I'm trying to tell you how much I admire you and your pretty wife...Tracy...It's disturbing how easily a member of the press can purchase information from the men in your precinct... I visited your home this morning after you'd left. I tried to play husband. I tried to taste the life of a simple man. It didn't work out. So I took a souvenir: Her pretty head...Because I envy your normal life, it seems that envy is my sin...She begged for her life, detectives...She begged for her life and for the life of the baby inside of her. Oh! (turning to Det. Somerset (Morgan Freeman)) He didn't know.

Tommy Boy (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Bonnie Turner, Terry Turner

A Desktop Demo - A Manic Sales Pitch to An Auto Executive

With his assistant Richard (David Spade) watching, loud-mouthed, dim-witted idiot child Tommy Boy Callahan (Chris Farley) re-enacted a car crash (with expensive model cars) to a car executive, in a sales pitch to sell brake pads. The demo was performed on his desk:

Uh, what my associate is trying say is that, uh... Our new brake pads are really cool. You're not even gonna believe it. Like, uhm, let's say you're driving along the road with your family. (He picked up a model car) And you're drivin' along, la-de-da, woo. Then, all of a sudden, there's a truck tire in the middle of the road. And you hit the brakes. EEEEEEEEE! Whoa, that was close. Ha-ha. Now let's see what happens when you're drivin' with the 'other guy's' brake pads. You're drivin' along, you're drivin' along, and then all of a sudden, the kids are yellin' from the back seat: 'I gotta go to the bathroom, Daddy!' 'Not now, damn it!' Truck tire. 'EEEEEEEE! I CAN'T STOP!' (He slammed the model car into a lighter) 'HELP! There's a cliff! AAAAAHH!' And your family's screamin'. (He set the model car on fire) 'Oh my God, we're burnin' alive!' 'No! I can't feel my legs!' Here comes the meat wagon. (He imitated a siren sound) And the medic gets out and says: 'Oh, my God!' New guy's in the corner pukin' his guts out. (He imitated a puking sound) All because you want to save a couple extra pennies. Ha, ha. And to me, it doesn't...

Tommy Boy (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Bonnie Turner, Terry Turner

Why I Suck As A Salesman - "I Killed My Sale!"

To a waitress named Helen (Maria Vacratsis), after he had been denied food, Tommy Boy (Chris Farley) manically described how he blew a sale:

That's nice, you look like a Helen. Helen, we're both in sales. Let me tell you why I suck as a salesman. Let's say I go into some guy's office, and let's say he's even remotely interested in buyin' something. Well, then I get all excited. I'm like JoJo, the Indian circus boy, with a pretty new pet. (He picked up a dinner roll) The pet is my possible sale. Oh my pretty little pet, I love you. So I stroke it, and I pet it, and I massage it. Hehe, I love it, I love my little naughty pet. (He playfully poked the roll) You're naughty! And then I take my naughty pet and I go... (He tore the dinner roll in two) Uuuuuuh! I killed it! I killed my sale! And that's when I blow it. That's when people like us have gotta forge ahead, Helen. Am I right?

She responded: "God, you're sick."

Twelve Monkeys (aka 12 Monkeys) (1995)
Screenwriter(s): David Webb Peoples, Janet Peoples

If You Aren't a Consumer, You're Mentally Ill!

When mentally-unstable prison convict James Cole (Bruce Willis) was sent back in time from the virus-plagued, post-apocalyptic world of 2035 to 1996, he was placed in a mental institution. He was introduced to eccentric, insane animal activist Jeffrey Goines (Brad Pitt) who was instructed to tell Jim about the rules and show him around. As they toured the facility, Goines pointed out patients who were playing various board games. He then expounded on consumerism and became more and more hysterical as he talked:

Games, games. Here's some games. Games you wanna get out. Ha! See, more games. Games, they vegitize you. If you play the games, you're voluntarily taking a tranquilizer...Drugs! What'd they give you? Thorazine? Haldol? How much? Learn your drugs - know your doses. It's elementary...

Telephone call? Telephone call? That's communication with the outside world. Doctor's discretion. Nuh-uh. Look, hey - if all of these nuts could just make phone calls, they could spread insanity, oozing through telephone cables, oozing into the ears of all these poor sane people, infecting them. Wackos everywhere, a plague of madness. In fact, very few, very few of us here are actually mentally ill. I'm not saying you're not mentally ill, for all I know, you're crazy as a loon. But that's not why you're here. That's not why you're here. That's not why you're here! You're here because of the system.

There's the television. It's all right there - all right there. Look, listen, kneel, pray. Commercials! We're not productive anymore. We don't make things anymore. It's all automated. What are we for then? We're consumers. Yeah. Okay, okay. Buy a lot of stuff, you're a good citizen. But if you don't buy a lot of stuff, if you don't, what are you then, I ask you? What? Mentally ill. Fact, Jim, fact - if you don't buy things: toilet paper, new cars, computerized yo-yos, electrically-operated sexual devices, stereo systems with brain-implanted headphones, screwdrivers with miniature built-in radar devices, voice-activated computers...

So if you want to watch a particular television program, say 'All My Children' or something, you go to the Charge Nurse and tell her day and time the show you want to see is on. But you have to tell her before the show is scheduled to be on. There's this guy and he's always requesting shows that had already played. Yes, no. You have to tell her before. He couldn't quite grasp the idea that the Charge Nurse couldn't make it be yesterday. She couldn't turn back time, thank you, Einstein. Now he, he was nuts. He was a fruitcake, Jim!...

The Usual Suspects (1995)
Screenwriter(s): Christopher McQuarrie

A Spook Story -- Who Was Keyser Soze? - "The Greatest Trick the Devil Ever Pulled Was Convincing The World He Didn't Exist"

Play clip (excerpt): The Usual Suspects

During a questioning scene, limping, weaselly con man Roger "Verbal" Kint (Oscar-winning Kevin Spacey) was interrogated by customs agent/officer Dave Kujan (Chazz Palminteri). Intercut with flashbacks, Kint told a lengthy, wily tale of the notorious, mysterious, devilish crime lord Keyser Soze's early life, including his description of the criminal mastermind's cold-blooded dealings with Hungarian rivals by killing his own family and seeking revenge - followed by his disappearance:

He was supposed to be Turkish. Some say his father was German. Nobody ever believed he was real. Nobody ever knew him or saw anybody that ever worked directly for him. But to hear Kobayashi tell it, anybody could have worked for Soze. You never knew.

That was his power. The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist. One story the guys told me, the story I believe, was from his days in Turkey. There was a gang of Hungarians that wanted their own mob. They realized that to be in power, you didn't need guns or money or even numbers. You just needed the will to do what the other guy wouldn't. After a while, they come into power and then they come after Soze. He was small-time then, just runnin' dope, they say.

They come to his home in the afternoon, looking for his business. They find his wife and kids in the house and decide to wait for Soze. He comes home to find his wife raped and children screaming. The Hungarians knew Soze was tough, not to be trifled with, so they let him know they meant business. They tell him they want his territory, all his business. Soze looks over the faces of his family. Then he showed these men of will what will really was. He tells them he would rather see his family dead than live another day after this. He lets the last Hungarian go. He waits until his wife and kids are in the ground, and then he goes after the rest of the mob. He kills their kids. He kills their wives. He kills their parents and their parents' friends. He burns down the houses they live in and the stores they work in. He kills people that owe him money. And like that, he's gone. (He blew on his fingers, as if to say 'Poof!') Underground. Nobody's ever seen him since. He becomes a myth, a spook story that criminals tell their kids at night. 'Rat on your pop and Keyser Soze will get ya.' And no one ever really believes.

After the agent asked: "Do you believe in him, Verbal?", he replied:

Keaton always said, 'I don't believe in God, but I'm afraid of him.' Well, I believe in God, and the only thing that scares me is Keyser Soze.

Best Film Speeches and Monologues
(chronological, by film title)
1920-1931 | 1932-1935 | 1936-1937 | 1938-1939 | 1939
1940 | 1941 | 1942 | 1943-1944 | 1945-1947 | 1948 | 1949 | 1950 | 1951 | 1952-1954
1955 | 1956-1957 | 1958-1959 | 1960 | 1961-1962 | 1963-1964 | 1965-1967 | 1968-1969
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