Jerry Maguire – Show Me the Money
After early 90s success with movies like Days of Thunder, A Few Good Men and The Firm, Tom Cruise had rested on his laurels a bit until 1996 when he featured in Mission Impossible and Jerry Maguire. Often overlooked as a movie in its own right, Jerry Maguire was reduced in its basest form to two memorable quotes.
The chick flick crowd tend to remember Cruise’s passionate speech to Renée Zellweger with the grab-me-a-bucket-quick: “You complete me”.
However, easily the most memorable part of the movie as Cruise’s character is desperately negotiating with obnoxious Pro Football star Cuba Gooding Jr is him bellowing at the top of his voice: “I LOVE BLACK PEOPLE – SHOW ME THE MONEY.”
Braveheart – For Freedom
Say what you like about the historical inaccuracies or Mel Gibson’s dodgy Scottish accent, but Braveheart set new standards for climatic large scale battle scenes. Braveheart was so powerful back in 1995 that even English people were cheering for the Scots to give the arrogant English army a good kicking.
The speech delivered by Gibson’s William Wallace has to rank amongst the most rousing pieces of inspirational rhetoric captured on film.
Beautifully entwined with the haunting melody, the speech punctuated by Gibson’s growling voice still makes you shiver with nervousness as the outnumbered Scots begin to believe in the ultimate ideal of freedom.
Princess Bride – Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya…
As far as swashbucklers go, The Princess Bride is one of the all-time great underground movies which for whatever reason was resigned to cult student status rather than massive success. The movie boasts the talents of Robin Hood: Men in Tights lead actor Cary Elwes, Billy Crystal, Mel Smith and even Columbo makes an appearance!
How the actors managed to keep a straight face through some of the tongue-in-cheek comic moments is frankly – inconceivable! The gem of this movie though is Mandy Patinkin, who plays legendary swordsman Inigo Montoya.
Haunted by the death of his father, Inigo is desperately seeking the six-fingered man for revenge, and when he finally catches up with his father’s killer, there’s one line he’s been rehearsing for 20 years: “Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die.” Instant classic.
Lord of the Rings – You Shall Not Pass
How ShortList could have ignored a nod to the efforts of Peter Jackson for probably the greatest trilogy of our time is unforgivable, especially when they included tripe like: “You’re so money, man”.
In a piece of truly epic filmmaking there are really far too many moments and lines that could have made this list.
This moment from Fellowship of the Ring however was something that had been teasing audiences for months before the movie came out in the trailers. The prospect of Gandalf the Grey fighting a Balrog was pant-wettingly tantalising.
The line “You. Shall Not. Pass” from Sir Ian McKellen was repeated endlessly by fans frantically clasping kitchen brooms, cardboard tubes and any other wizard’s staff props they could randomly lay their hands on.
Pulp Fiction – Ezekiel 25:17
“You will know my name is the Lord, as I lay my vengeance upon thee,” possibly the coolest line one could utter, before unloading a full clip of ammunition into a helpless victim.
There’s no doubt about it, Samuel L. Jackson brings credence to any film he acts in; he even made Snakes on a Plane watchable. In Pulp Fiction, Jackson delivered the coolest and slickest performance of his career.
All previous entries to this article are secondary to this one. All other quotes for that matter should owe their allegiance to this, the King of speeches. In the paragon of memorable quotes, Samuel L. Jackson’s holy death sentence “Ezekiel 25:17” is unparalleled.
The fact that it’s not a direct passage from the Bible is testament to the brilliance of the writing, and Jackson’s delivery which makes you believe he is truly reciting holy scripture. As he builds to a terrifying crescendo, the wrath in Jackson’s voice holds the menace of a killer on a crusade.
Forget all other quotes, this is the one. Anyone who disagrees will be struck down with furious anger. Amen to that.