Friday, January 18, 2013

The Private Language of Movies

Maybe I'd have better luck being Scarlett if I wore this dress.

I think most couples and families have inside jokes; phrases they say that have particular meaning to them. What I've come to realize lately is that many of these sayings come from movies. One of my co-workers and her husband often quote a line from "Elf" to each other. Perhaps you know the one?
Buddy Elf speaking. What's your favorite color?
They use this as their phone greeting to each other, so I hear it several times a day. Another co-worker says this line every time she wipes off her glasses and puts them back on:
I can see again! It's a miracle!
I didn't realize it was an obscure movie quote until she told me it was a scene in "Ferngully" and she and her family say it every time they do anything involving hiding and unhiding their eyes. We have a few of these inside joke quotes in my family, too. Probably more than a few. My mom and I are fond of quoting Katherine Hepburn from the movie "On Golden Pond." In one scene, daughter Jane Fonda pulls up to the cabin in a rental car and Henry Ford starts questioning her about what make it is and what kind of engine it has. Jane, like Mom and me, has no knowledge or interest in cars and replies, "I don't know. A green car?" And Katherine Hepburn clasps her hands together with joy, trying to smooth the tension between father and daughter and trebles,
Oooohhhhhh, a greeeeeen caaaaarrrrr.
We say it like that, too, any time someone asks us a car question. And at home, I can't resist using one of Scarlett O'Hara's lines. Whenever I'm hoping someone will do something for me (because I'm too lazy to get up and do it myself), I try to use Scarlett's Southern belle charm that worked so well at the barbeque. As the men fight over who can fetch her dessert, she finally alights on Melanie's brother and says,
I think Charles Hamilton may get it.
He thanks her profusely and rushes off to retrieve her dessert. My family is not as quick and eager to do my beckoning, but I try it anyway. What about you? Do you have movie quotes that have become common inside language/jokes in your house?


  1. Lol what a fun post.

    Yes, Andy and I do this, but now that you've asked, I of course can't think of any... Ugh.

    Well, I do remember that he likes to say, "Therein lies the excitement!" It's a line from an episode of Bones (where they're investigating a murder at a circus and Booth has to throw knives at her, for some reason..) and is delivered in this hilarious tone that Andy mimics.

    1. Isn't it funny how some of these lines find their way into our lives? And in such odd ways. :)

  2. Mine is scrape 'em off Claire. If you want to save someone save yourself
    From my favorite movie scrooged

    1. That must be the best line from "Scrooged." It's the only one I know. I should use it at work.