Saturday, 17 June 2006

LINES FROM THE PROJECTIONIST'S FOREHEAD

Yesterday’s blog on memorable last lines from the movies prompted my friend James the Magician to offer a few of his own favourite lines...

Strictly speaking, they’re not so much 'favourites lines' as ones that stuck in his head - through “constant exposure” - when (as one of his first jobs) he worked in the projection booth at the Embassy Cinema, Esher…

Nor, to be fair, are they LAST lines, which is changing the rules of the game somewhat. I mean, if I’d allowed myself lines from ANYWHERE in a picture then I’d have definitely included: “I suppose it’d be better if I’d never been born at all…”

And I’d have certainly have wanted: “Dip the apple in the brew. Let the Sleeping Death seep through…”; “You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together and - blow...”; and, somewhere near the top of the list: “Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night!”

Anyway, here are James’ submissions for your amusement and/or puzzlement (answers in a day or two’s time):

A gun goes off at a football game.
“Oh my God! They've shot him!”
“--- ----, you incredible nincompoop! It's the end of the quarter!

“It just occurred to me... I've travelled halfway around the world, at great expense, simply to kill a different kind of bird.”

“------ told me once, 'Never be too disturbed if you don't understand what a woman is thinking. They don't do it very often.'"

“What's the point of all this, Doctor?”
“By doing this, I've survived a great deal of other peoples’ deaths, and I intend to survive a great deal more!”

“They're the Umbala tribe. They eat people. Very backward.”
“Well, they're not eating ME backwards!”

"Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."


Suffice it to say, it’s a mixed bag: a couple of classics and one or two lost gems of cinema that, arguably, would have been better LEFT lost!

2 comments:

Brian Sibley said...

Here are the sources of these ten (not LAST) movie lines! Firstly, my four:

“I suppose it’d be better if I’d never been born at all…”

George Bailey (James Stewart) to his angel, Clarence (Henry Travers) in ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ (1946)

***

“Dip the apple in the brew. Let the Sleeping Death seep through…”

Wicked Queen/Witch (Lucille La Verne) while cooking up a tasty delicacy for the heroine of ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ (1937)

***

“You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together and - blow...”

Marie ‘Slim’ Browning (Lauren Bacall) to Harry ‘Steve’ Morgan’ (Humphrey Bogart) in ‘To Have and Have Not’ (1944)

***

“Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night!”

Margo Channing (Bette Davis) to everyone within earshot in ‘All About Eve’ (1950)

***

And James the Magician’s six:

A gun goes off at a football game.
“Oh my God! They've shot him!”
“Hot Lips, you incredible nincompoop! It's the end of the quarter!

Maj Margaret ‘Hot Lips’ O’Houlihan (Sally Kellerman) and Lt Col Henry Adlai Braymore Blake in ‘M*A*S*H’ (1970)

***

“It just occurred to me... I've travelled halfway around the world, at great expense, simply to kill a different kind of bird.”

John Morgan (Richard Harris) in ‘A Man Named Horse’ (1970)

***

“Merlin told me once, 'Never be too disturbed if you don't understand what a woman is thinking. They don't do it very often.'"

King Arthur (Richard Harris once more), quoting Merlin, in ‘Camelot’ (1967)

***

“What's the point of all this, Doctor?”
“By doing this, I've survived a great deal of other peoples’ deaths, and I intend to survive a great deal more!”

The Landlord’s Wife (Vera Cook) and Dr Tobler (Miles Malleson) in ‘The Brides of Dracula’ (1960)

***

“They're the Umbala tribe. They eat people. Very backward.”
“Well, they're not eating ME backwards!”

Upsidaisi (Bernard Bresslaw) and Professor Inigo Tinkle (Frankie Howerd) carrying on in ‘Carry on Up the Jungle’ (1970)

***

"Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."

Gen George S Patton Jr (George C Scott) in ‘Patton’ [aka ‘Patton: A Salute to a Rebel’, ‘Patton: Lust for Glory’ and, in the UK, ‘Blood and Guts] (1970)

James the Magician said...

My father served with "Blood and Guts" as he called him (Patton) in North Africa and I had the honour of projecting PATTEN: LUST FOR GLORY (the title we had) for him at the Embassy Cinema, Esher. He was incedibly moved by it. He said it was very truthful and he remembered a number of the incedents portrayed. Who says Hollyweood are always wrong?!

James Fortune (James the Magician)