The 10 best short monologues can be a single line or paragraph an actor delivers to make a movie memorable. Some of these short monologues live on today in pop culture. Other members of the best short monologues list work only in the context of the movie they were featured in.
- "Jaws" The line delivered by Chief Brody (Roy Scheider) that is most remembered from the movie is "You're gonna need a bigger boat." Scheider improvised that line after seeing the mechanical shark for the first time.
- "Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back" When the voice of James Earl Jones as Darth Vader uttered, "No, I am your father" to Luke Skywalker, you could hear a pin drop in movie theaters all over the world. That short monologue has gone on to be one of the most famous moments in film history.
- "Dirty Harry" Dirty Harry (Clint Eastwood) has the bank robber on the ground and says, "You have to ask yourself 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do you punk?" The line is capped by Dirty Harry pulling the trigger, showing the bad guy the chamber was empty and then smiling as he walks away.
- "Sudden Impact" Dirty Harry (Clint Eastwood) is always good for a quote that could be one of the best short monologues of all time. In this movie he uttered the now famous phrase, "Go ahead, make my day."
- "The Godfather" When Don Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando) announced he was going to make someone "an offer they can't refuse," he was creating movie histories. Few short monologues have had the impact on movies and pop culture like this one did.
- "The Big Lebowski" The Dude (Jeff Bridges) explains his time in college to Brandt (Philip Seymour Hoffman) as a drug haze where he was part of a protest group that took over school buildings. The deadpan way in which Bridges delivers the line is what makes it a memorable short monologue.
- "Animal Crackers" Groucho Marx had many memorable monologues, but this entry was from "Animal Crackers." Groucho announces, "One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got into my pajamas, I don't know."
- "Fight Club" "Fight Club" was a moderate success, but Brad Pitt had one of the best short monologues ever. Pitt's line "The first rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club" has become part of American pop culture.
- "Psycho" As Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins) sits in his prison cell, a fly lands on his leg. In the voice of his mother he says, "She wouldn't even hurt a fly" and looks up with a sinister look. It is an extremely effective moment in the film.
- "Animal House" "Animal House" offers this entry on the list of best short monologues. Dean Wormer (John Vernon) is admonishing some members of the Animal House fraternity when he says, "Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son."
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