Movie quotes in everyday conversation

November 13, 2007

A British website recently came out with a survey asking people which quotes they most commonly use in everyday conversation. Probably not surprisingly, “I’ll be back” (I don’t need to say where it’s from do I?) came in first. Of course, this begs the question, do people actually say the Schwarzeneggerian version (you know, more like “Ah’ll be bahck”) or just the phrase itself, which, let’s admit, is quite a common expression that doesn’t always have Terminator connotations?

Personally, I prefer “I’ll be right back” (said ominously, naturally), it gives the moment more of a Scream-esque feeling and really, makes those you’re speaking to a lot more interested in seeing you come back.

I can also certainly understand “You talking to me?” (Number 4, from Taxi Driver) and “Life is like a box of chocolates” (Number 5, Forrest Gump). Not hard to fit a simple response and life metaphor into our daily lives.

But “Nobody puts Baby in a corner”? (Number 10) I have to ask, does that really come up in everyday conversation? Perhaps my life is just very unexciting (and that’s not so unlikely), but I can’t say I’ve come across many, or really any, scenarios where that quote is appropriate. Not that I haven’t heard that phrase quoted before, but usually in a what’s-that-quote-again or let’s-share-fond-chick-flick-memories context.

Of course, this is coming from someone who probably most often quotes Jafar from Aladdin (Patience, Iago, patience), with a dose of Albert from The Birdcage (How do you think I feel? Betrayed, bewildered…) and Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Leaves only the fresh scent of pine), so who am I to talk?

Oh, and “Bewaaare the groooove…” That’s applicable to so many life situations, really. I also like “only mostly dead” but (well, fortunately) that doesn’t come up that often in conversation.

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