What are your favourite film quotes spoken by women?

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Catchfire Catchfire's picture
What are your favourite film quotes spoken by women?

Via feministing

“Most guys, we can recite all of The Godfather, we can recite all of Caddyshack, we can do all those kind of things. Women, by and large, can’t. You can guys can say you complete me, and that’s about it. And I think it’s because in the history of movies, there have been fewer quotable lines spoken by actresses than actors.”

 –Aaron Sorkin

Oh really, Aaron?

"There's a speed limit in this state, Mr. Neff. 45 miles an hour." 

Issues Pages: 
Ken Burch

From "Fried Green Tomatoes"

(two young blondes in a Jeep have just stolen a parking space Kathy Bates' character, Evelyn Couch had been waiting for)

Evelyn: I've been waiting for that space!

Young Blondes:(smugly)Guess we're just younger and faster.

(Evelyn rams their Jeep with her car-the blondes no longer look smug)

Evelyn: Guess I'm just older and have more insurance(drives away).

Ken Burch

From one of the "Star Trek" movies

(Lt. Uhuru has suddenly grabbed a phaser and is helping the old "Enterprise" crew hold off some younger Federation troops for some reason)

Young Federation Guy(To Uhura): You're out of touch with reality!

Uhura: This isn't reality...THIS IS FANTASY!


Oh my god.  I was just looking for this scene from Trains, Planes and Automobiles, because I thought the line by the woman at the end of Steve Martin's rant was hysterical - completely topped him!  So someone uploads it to YouTube and what do they do?  They CUT HER LINE OFF THE END OF THE CLIP!


Talk about illustrating the quote that opens this thread!

Here's the YouTube clip where they cut out her line:

Now, here's the scene WITH her line at the end of it.

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

For some reason, this is the most memorable for me off the top of my head:

"As God is my witness, they're not going to lick me. I'm going to live through this and when it's all over, I'll never be hungry again. No, nor any of my folk. If I have to lie, steal, cheat or kill. As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again."

Ken Burch

Well, it was a great expression of personal determination on Scarlett's part...doesn't make up for her being a slaveowner, but what are ya gonna do?


Catchfire Catchfire's picture

I am obsessed with Gone with the Wind! I mean, it is a tornado of offensive, racist, sexist, colonialist tropes--it's such an amazing (contradictory) picture of 1930s America. I think I'm obsessed with It's a Wonderful Life for similar reasons. Fiddle-dee-dee.

ETA @Ken Burch They're "servants" in the film. And the South treated them "differently." That must be why there's that shot of slaves in Atlanta, recently freed, singing "Let My People Go."

Ken Burch

Oh yes..."servants"...who were treated "differently"...what COULD I have been thinking?

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

My point is that there are unfortunately few female protagonsits in US Hollywood films that you could quote from. Scarlette O'Hara being one of the few. She may not have been a feminist or socialist icon but at least she was definitely a lead with memorable lines. I haven't seen anything else to top that.

Ken Burch


Didn't "Thelma and Louise" have any quotable lines?

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

I remember the film but little of the dialogue. I welcome you to find something that is memorable.

Aalya Aalya's picture

The glory that was Mae West (playwright in her own right). I love her so much:

"A dame that knows the ropes isn't likely to get tied up."

"Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before."

"His mother should have thrown him out and kept the stork."



I agree...

"Come up and see me sometime....I'll tell your fortune"

"Is that a gun in your pocket or are you just tryin to be friendly..?"

David Young

My all-time favorite female quote?

Siguorney Weaver in ALIENS...

'Get away from her, you BITCH!'


Maysie Maysie's picture

Ken Burch wrote:


Didn't "Thelma and Louise" have any quotable lines?

To the truck driver who's been sexually harassing them on the road for days:

Louise (pulling out a gun): "You say you're sorry. Or I'm gonna make you fucking sorry."



David Young wrote:

My all-time favorite female quote?

Siguorney Weaver in ALIENS...

'Get away from her, you BITCH!'



Ugh.  The battle of "the mommies".  I've always found that line totally gratuitous and one of the low points in an otherwise great film.

"Fasten your seatbelts - it's going to be a bumpy night."  (The incomparable Bette Davis in "All About Eve" - actually there are better quotes in that film, but that's the best known.)


Catchfire Catchfire's picture

I agree, pookie, re: Aliens.

I take your point, laine lowe--one of the comments on feministing mentioned that the reason Aaron Sorkin hasn't noticed women reciting other women's lines, the reason men "just happen" to have more quotable lines is because of people like him. The film business is one of the most exclusionary businesses in the world, with massive barriers to female directors, screenwriters, producers and even actors (there is a very narrow type of actor available to women).

Even the memorable lines are mostly not strong or feminst ones--I'm thinking of "I'm ready for my close up" or the above Alien line.

Some exceptions might be Marlene Dietrich's dedicated anti-Nazism in her films, or Lillian Gish as Rachel Cooper (whom Margaret Atwood called the only Christ figure manifested as a shotgun-wielding Granny) in the last lines of Night of the Hunter: 

My soul is humble when I see the way little ones accept their lot. Lord, save little children. The wind blows and the rain's a-cold. Yet they abide...They abide and they endure.


"Oh yeah?"


"Ya know?"

-Frances McDormand, in like half of Fargo


Though also to be serious, her few lines at the end too.


Ya the end of that movie is priceless. It looks like a scene from near my hometown. Cop car escort for a fugitive in the middle of winter. And Marge says to Grimsrud, the killer who never says anything:

There's more to life than a little money, you know. Don'tcha know that? And here ya are, and it's a beautiful day. Well. I just don't understand it.

"Here ya are, and it's a beautiful day...." 

Marge, the epitome of justice and people's avenger.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Here's my favourite movie quotes by female characters:

Dorothy from the [i]Wizard of Oz[/i]:

Toto, I don't think we're in Kansas any more.

Auntie Em from [i]The Wizard of Oz[/i]:

Almira Gulch, just because you own half the county doesn't mean that you have the power to run the rest of us. For twenty-three years, I've been dying to tell you what I thought of you! And now... well, being a Christian woman, I can't say it!

Princess Leia Organa:

General Kenobi. Years ago you served my father in the Clone Wars. Now he begs you to help him in his struggle against the Empire. I regret that I am unable to convey my father's request to you in person, but my ship has fallen under attack, and I'm afraid my mission to bring you to Alderaan has failed. I have placed information vital to the survival of the Rebellion into the memory systems of this R2 unit. My father will know how to retrieve it. You must see this droid safely delivered to him on Alderaan. This is our most desperate hour. Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi. You're my only hope.

Governor Tarkin, I should have expected to find you holding Vader's leash. I recognized your foul stench the moment I was brought on board.

Why, you stuck up, half-witted, scruffy-looking Nerf herder.

Lorriane Baines in [i]Back to the Future[/i]:

Well... you're safe and sound now back in good old 1955.

Dr. Ellie Sattler in [i]Jurassic Park[/i]:

I was overwhelmed by the power of this place; but I made a mistake, too. I didn't have enough respect for that power and it's out now .The only thing that matters are the poeple we love: Alan and Lex and Tim. And They're out there where people are dying.

Old Rose in [i]Titanic[/i]:

Fifteen-hundred people went into the sea, when Titanic sank from under us. There were twenty boats floating nearby... and only one came back. One. Six were saved from the water, myself included. Six... out of fifteen-hundred. Afterward, the seven-hundred people in the boats had nothing to do but wait... wait to die... wait to live... wait for an absolution... that would never come.

knownothing knownothing's picture



"He was some kind of a man, what does it matter what you say about people?" - Marlene Dietrich

autoworker autoworker's picture

Ninotchka: "Why do you want to carry my bags?" Porter: "That is my business." Ninotchka: "That's no business. That's social injustice." Porter: "That depends on the tip."

Maysie Maysie's picture

M, played by Judy Dench, in the James Bond reboot, Casino Royale, when Bond, who's broken into her apartment and computer, is about to say what the letter M stands for:

"Utter one more syllable and I'll have you killed."


Gingers Rogers in "Vivacious Lady", in response to the line "I'm tempted to give you a piece of my mind!":

"Oh, I couldn't take the last piece!"

Olympia Dukakis in "Moonstruck":

"Cosmo, I just want you to know, no matter what you do, you're going to die, just like everybody else."

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

"You cad! You dirty swine! I never cared for you - not once! I was always making a fool of ya. Ya bored me stiff. I hated ya. It made me sick when I had to let ya kiss me. I only did it because you begged me - ya hounded me and drove me crazy! And after you kissed me, I always used to wipe my mouth. Wipe my mouth!" - Bette Davis in [i]Of Human Bondage[/i]

"This is 1852, dumplin', 1852 - not the dark ages. Girls don't have to simper around in white just because they're not married." - Bette Davis in [i]Jezebel[/i]

"I [i]am[/i] big. It's the pictures that got small." - Gloria Swanson in [i]Sunset Boulevard[/i]

"Little girls, I am in the business of putting old heads on young shoulders, and all my pupils are the crème de la crème. Give me a girl at an impressionable age and she is mine for life." - Maggie Smith in [i]The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie[/i]

"You're not too smart, are you? I like that in a man." - Kathleen Turner in  [i]Body Heat [/i]

"I'll have what she's having." - Estelle Reiner in [i]When Harry Met Sally[/i]


How about Tina Fey at the Emmys (first year of 30 Rock, and that show Aaron Sorkin did)  

"Aaron Sorkin is wearing the same dress as me, only it's twice as long and not funny."



Okay, I know it can be seen as hoaky, and it's not a line, exactly.

But Madelaine Lebeau. 

She's at 1:10 on this clip.


Nope. I'm not choked up or nothing.  Gotta go, there's something in my eye.  And a fire in my heart.




Kathleen Turner to William Hurt in Body Heat:

"You're not very bright, are you? I like that in a man."


Maysie wrote:

M, played by Judy Dench, in the James Bond reboot, Casino Royale, when Bond, who's broken into her apartment and computer, is about to say what the letter M stands for:

"Utter one more syllable and I'll have you killed."

I love that line, and no one could deliver it like Judi Dench (best M ever).


@ Rebecca 

My only regret about that remake was the fact that they turned the game into Poker  rather than Baccarat , which has a completely different, less cerebral and far more visceral strategy, and which was so integral to the original book that they printed card hands alongside the text.



I miss Blanche Hunt on Coronation Street. She was Deirdre Barlow's mother. Blanche was a zinger machine. 

"You're going to have to learn to take pleasure in the misfortunes of others, Ken, or you're going to have a very miserable old age." - Blanche to Ken Barlow



Here is a wonderful one. 

"I am no man!"


M. Spector M. Spector's picture

nicky wrote:

Kathleen Turner to William Hurt in Body Heat:

"You're not very bright, are you? I like that in a man."

Well, that's [url=http://rabble.ca/babble/feminism/what-are-your-favourite-film-quotes-spo... votes[/url] for this one.

I guess Kathleen Turner wins!


Sorry MS, I didn't see you beat me to the punch.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

no problem. good pick.

Hurtin Albertan

Sigourney Weaver's best quote from Aliens:

"I say we take off and nuke the site from orbit.  It's the only way to be sure."

First good quote I could think of.

Red Tory Tea Girl

Speaking of Aaron Sorkin and great lines by actresses, I have to admit a certain fondness for Ainsley Hayes.

Bruce: Oh, damn. I wanted you to say it to his face. I wanted to see...
Harriet: I hate these people.
Bruce: Did you meet anyone there who isn't worthless?
Ainsley Hayes: Don't say that.
Bruce: Did you meet anyone there who has any - ?
Ainsley Hayes: I said don't say that. Say they're smug and superior. Say their approach to public policy makes you want to tear your hair out. Say they like high taxes and spending your money. Say they want to take your guns and open your borders, but don't call them worthless. At least don't do it in front of me. The people that I have met have been extraordinarily qualified, their intent is good. Their commitment is true, they are righteous, and they are patriots. And I'm their lawyer.


Also, too long to quote verbatim, but, "can I have this muffin?"


Sam: I'm going to register with Republican party. And I'll tell you why, if you're curious. It's because they're a freedom-loving people.
Ainsley: We also like beef.

Ainsley: It's humiliating. A new ammendment we vote on declaring that I am equal under the law to a man. I am mortified to discover there is reason to believe I wasn't before. I am a citizen of this country, I am not a special subset in need of your protection. I do not have to have my rights handed down to me by a bunch of old white men. The same article fourteen that protects you protects me and I went to law school just to make sure. And with that, I'm going back down to the mess, because I thought I may have seen there, a peach.
Sam: I could have countered that, but I'd already moved onto other things in my head.

I don't like her politics, sure, but she's whip-smart and intellectually rigorous and doesn't look like Jeneane Garofalo while doing it... sorry, I was kind of off in la-la-land thinking about Jeneane Garofalo for a minute. Embarassed

I like the fact that when Aaron Sorkin writes women, femme and intelligent can get into the same room more often than not, without the typical King of Queens misandry that seems to typically be mandatory when that happens.