Excerpts from my column “Top Movies Quotes of All Time” from March 2009: The markets did not rile me this week, but the American Film Institute certainly did.

They had the audacity to list the top 10 movie quotes of all time and to my astonishment, not a single quote was from a Western.

Needless to say, their list is seriously flawed. Nonetheless, here are their picks.

Top 10 Movie Quotes:

  1. “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” — “Gone With the Wind”
  2. “I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse.” — “The Godfather”
  3. “You don’t understand. I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I could’ve been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am.” — “On the Waterfront”
  4. “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.” — “The Wizard of Oz”
  5. “Here’s looking at you, kid.” — “Casablanca”
  6. “Go ahead, make my day.” — “Sudden Impact”
  7. “All right, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up.” — “Sunset Boulevard”
  8. “May the Force be with you.” — “Star Wars”
  9. “Fasten your seat belts. It’s going to be a bumpy night.” — “All About Eve”
  10. “You talking to me?” — “Taxi Driver”

Here, on the other hand, is my list of top movie quotes, and each is from a classic Western. Compare my choices to the American Film Institute’s and decide for yourself which is the better list.

  1. “Somebody back East is saying, ‘Why don’t he write!?’” — “Dances With Wolves”
  2. “I’m your huckleberry.” — “Tombstone”
  3. “Now remember… when things look bad, and it looks like you’re not gunna make it, then you gotta get mean. I mean plumb mad dog mean… ‘Cause if you lose your head and you give up, you neither live nor win. That’s just the way it is.” — “The Outlaw Josey Wales”
  4. “There are only two things more beautiful than a good gun: a Swiss watch or a woman from anywhere. Ever had a good… Swiss watch?” — “Red River”
  5. “It’s a hell of a thing, killin’ a man. Take away all he’s got, and all he’s ever gonna have.” — “Unforgiven”
  6. Pike: “He gave his word.” Dutch: “He gave his word to a railroad.” Pike: “It’s his word.” Dutch: “That ain’t what counts! It’s who you give it to!” — “The Wild Bunch”
  7. “This is the West, sir. When the legend becomes fact. Print the legend.” — “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance”
  8. “A man who wouldn’t cheat for a poke don’t want one bad enough.” — “Lonesome Dove”
  9. “Just once, I’d like to shoot at an educated man.” – “Lonesome Dove”
  10. “Never apologize. It’s a sign of weakness.” — “She Wore A Yellow Ribbon”
  11. “I won’t be wronged, I won’t be insulted, and I won’t be laid a hand on. I don’t do these things to other people and I expect the same from them.” — “The Shootist”
  12. “I can’t stand rude behavior in a man. I won’t tolerate it.” — “Lonesome Dove”
  13. “Fill your hands, you son of a b*tch.” — “True Grit”
  14. “Are you gonna pull those pistols or whistle Dixie?” — “The Outlaw Josey Wales”
  15. “Whoa, take ‘er easy there, Pilgrim.” — “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance”
  16. “Are you crazy? The fall will probably kill you!” — “Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid”

I left word with the American Film Institute a week ago about their list and why it should be amended to include quotes from classic American Westerns. They have yet to return my call.

If I do not hear from them soon, I will have no choice, but to make them an offer they cannot refuse.

If you have a quote from a Western film you favor drop me a line. I would love hearing it.

And next week it is back to the Big Four — stocks, bonds, currencies and commodities.


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