There are famous movie quotes that you might have heard on TV or at a party and wondered, “I have no idea what that reference is. Okay, just pretend to know what it means and laugh. I don’t want everyone to know my DVD collection consists solely of ‘The Matrix’ and sports bloopers.” Knowing these movie quotes will not only increase your movie trivia knowledge, it’ll make a lot of “Simpsons” and “Family Guy” episodes make way more sense.
“I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.” The HAL 9000 computer in Stanley Kubrick’s 1968 epic “2001: A Space Odyssey” owns this movie quote. Long before “The Terminator” trilogy’s Skynet or Agent Smith in “The Matrix,” HAL was a pioneer in the field of super-intelligent computers that go insane and decide to kill everyone. After HAL kills his entire crew, lone survivor Dave ended up outside of the spaceship and asked HAL, “Open the pod bay doors, please, HAL.” HAL’s emotionless response was, “I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.” Dave ends up tearing out all of HAL’s circuitry. HAL sings “Daisy, Daisy” while dying, Dave sees a bunch of strange light effects, roll credits. That’s the short version.
“Houston, we have a problem.” This movie quote is from “Apollo 13” and said by Tom Hanks as astronaut Jim Lovell. The movie quote is uttered when Apollo 13 was on its way to the Moon and encounters technical difficulties. Director Ron Howard included many actual quotes from the mission, but for some reason changed this iconic line. In reality, Jim Lovell said, “Houston, we’ve had a problem.” But please don’t point this out at parties, as the purpose of this article is not to get you punched.
“Rosebud.” Orson Welles as Charles Foster Kane, the tyrannical newspaper magnate in “Citizen Kane,” utters this movie quote as his famous last word. The universally revered film begins with Kane’s death and explores his life from happy kid to raging mogul. In the end, we see workers throwing old junk from Kane’s mansion into a fire. One of the items is a kid’s sleigh and we see “Rosebud” written on it as it burns. Kane had everything money could buy, but all he really wanted was his childhood happiness back. Remember this movie quote on your deathbed and say longingly, “Elmo.”
“What we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.” This movie quote is from 1967’s “Cool Hand Luke,” starring Paul Newman when he was known less for his salad dressing and more for his acting. Newman plays Luke – a rebellious inmate at a Florida prison camp hated by the guards. The Captain puts permanent shackles on Luke’s feet after catching him trying to escape. Luke’s response to the shackles is “I wish you’d stop being so good to me, Captain.” In a rage, the Captain beats Luke and turns to the other prisoners and says, “What we’ve got here is a failure to communicate…” summing up his frustration at having an inmate who just won’t bow down. Luke never relents and it costs him his life.
“I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse.” This is by far the most famous quote from “The Godfather.” Marlon Brando’s Vito Corleone, the Godfather, hears requests for favors at his daughter’s wedding in the beginning of the film. Johnny Fontane, a family friend, wants the Godfather to get him cast in a movie even though the producer already refused. Don Corleone tells him not to worry, “I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse.” Tom Hagen, Corleone’s trusted consigliere, pleads the actor’s case as they walk through the producer’s stable of expensive racehorses. The producer still refuses to cast Johnny, blaming him for getting an actress pregnant. The next morning, the producer finds the severed head of his best horse in his bed. The meaning is simple: “I’ll ask you nicely first. If you refuse, I’m going to make something very bad happen to you.” Reconsider who you choose to refuse or you might wake up with a severed XBOX controller on the pillow next to you.