Continuing with my list of monologues. Lets take a look at my top 10 monologues in film. I’ll throw it out there again, this list is not ranked or definitive. There are so many great monologues in alot of movies, I don’t think anyone could achieve a definitive list. So without further ado , lets get started.
I’m gonna start with two honorable mentions first. You could formulate an argument that they are not really monologues, but lets just say they are for the sake of it today. The first is rules of fight club. I think you be hard press to find somoene who doesn’t know the first two rules of fight club. The second is a hilarious bit by Will Farrell in “The Other Guys”. Will Farrell can be hit or miss, but man when he hits its a bulleye. Watch him turn the tables on his partner as he describes lion eating tuna.
#10 – Good Will Hunting – Experience vs Knowledge
Matt Damon and Ben Affleck introduction to the film world was a damn good one. It’s filled with alot of moments, and Matt Damon actually has two monologues in this film that I’m sure would make many peoples top ten all on their own. However, Robin Williams clearly steals the show with this monologue about experience vs knowledge. It easy to know things, but its not the most important aspect of life. It’s one of the few moments in the film where Matt Damon’s character is humbled.
#9 – Glengarry Ross – Always Be Closing
This might be the most famous monologue on the list. At least from a film enthusiast perspective. This movie isn’t the most well known, but this scenes influences on pop culture are profound. It is often considered Alec Baldwins best work, and this was the only scene he appeared in for the entire movie. Not Safe For Work Language **
#8 – Precious – Sexual Abuse Confession “Who is gonna love me”
Precious was a vehicle very much made for this time era. It is an adaptation of the novel Push. This film is courageous and uncompromising, a real look into the all the troubles of sexual abuse, teen pregnancy, low economic ceilings and even a look into great and sad government support systems can be. How good is this movie? It finally made people forgive Mariah Carey for “Glitter” and turn Monique into an academy award winner. I didn’t think she had it in her, but this scene alone proves me and everybody else wrong. The sorrowful story of a mother plagued by sexual abuse and a desired to be loved.
#7 Network – I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore
Network is the oldest film on the list and this scene is one of the most memorable in american cinema. The best part about this monologue is that it kind of still stands today. For a movie to be almost 4 decades old and still ring true to issues today. It’s a testament to excellent film making and unfortunately a reminder that we haven’t come very far.
#6 Any Given Sunday – The inches we need
Sports movies are always fun. They are also breeding grounds for powerful and motivating monologues. The internet is filled to the brim with compilation videos comprised of solely of coaches from sports movies. Al Pacino does what he normally does, act his ass off in any given sunday. This movie is littered with talent and he still manages to steal the show. His speech is filled with personal tragedy and insight. It will even take your brain a moment to realize he is talking about football. Honestly, if your having a down day, just listen to this. It’ll instill some fighting spirit in you I promise.
#5 Scent of a Woman – Dat Flamethrower tho?
Might as well stay on Al Pacino alittle longer. This movie might be his personal favorite. It finally bought him his academy award for best actor. I’m pretty sure this scene sealed the deal. It’s a passionate speech attacking the hypocrisy of a private school. “At least he is not a snitch”
#4 A Few Good Men – You Can’t Handle The Truth
“You can’t handle the truth” has got to be one of most quotable lines of all time. Easily top 5 wouldn’t you think? As the film gets older, I’m sure alot of people forget the origin, but thats why I get to write stuff like this, to remind you. One of Jack Nicolaus best moments, the angry tirade of an army officier who believes the ends justify the means. His delivery is flawless, its not arrogance .. its conviction. Misguided? I’ll let you be the judge.
#3 Shawshank Redemption – Rehabilitated
Who doesn’t love some Morgan Freedman. He has a voice pretty much born for monologues. Whatever he says, whenever he says it sounds like it comes from years of experience. This scene is not much different. While he is not the star of Shawshank Redemption, is there any doubt that he is the soul? He is an old soul and thats what this scene represents. Tired to the point that he almost doesn’t realize the point. He has long since realized the error of his ways. While he is filled with regret and the wishes he could do it again. He has accepted who he is and what his life has become.
#2 Gangs of New York – This was a great man
This list may also be criminal without an appear from Daniel Day-Lewis. Who in my opinion is pound for pound the best character actor right now. In this scene he tells of the story of his greatest nemesis, or is it his greatest friend? Thats the beautiful part of this scene. The story describes someone he is suppose to hate, but his respect for this man is so high. The entire segment comes off as endearing.
#1 25th Hour – Fuck Everything
To round out my list, is a personal favorite of mine. I’m not even gonna go into much detail about what its about. I will tell you it is a 5 minute rant on everything this particular character has come to hate about New York City. I’m from NYC and this scene is brilliant, it is satire at its best. His tirade actually highlights how diverse of a city it is. It’s an Ode to NYC just as much as it is a verbal roasting. Disclaimer, this one is filled with NSFW language, I lost count at the number of F bombs.