I love the film Swingers. I would occasionally quote lines from it with the pals. At some point one of the great quotes from that film, “This place is dead anyway”, had become used less as a quote and more like a mantra. Everytime a group of us were hanging out that line would inevitably be said. The humor that I felt about the line was squeezed out of it by the complete overuse of it. It became more annoying to hear than fun.
Swingers is just one of countless films that are very quote-friendly. I used to love hearing a quote from a film come out of someone’s mouth. There’s an instant connection you share with that person. You know that line, know the film, and it’s nice to know they are another fan. That’s one thing you share in common off the bat. It was almost an inside joke between people.
Lately I’ve been hearing the same movie quotes way too often. Everyone has tried all those famous lines, like the Godfather, but the real annoying ones are from comedies. Classic comedies are prime picking for quotes. Austin Powers, Animal House, Caddyshack, Revenge of the Nerds, Fletch, Clerks, Office Space.
It’s usually an offense by guys who think the line is just as funny hearing it from them that it was in the original film. Their not simply quoting the line, they’re saying it as if they wrote it specifically for the situation. I was at a 7-11 and this guy was buying lottery tickets. He said to the check out guy, “I hope to win….ONE MILLION DOLLARS” and put his pinky to his mouth. The check out guy wasn’t laughing.
It’s become an extremely rare occasion where hearing any movie quote from someone will break me into hysterics.You have to have a real talent to pull of the quote and know that it’s appropriate to add to the conversation. You might be able to squeeze a laugh out of it, if your lucky. It’s very easy for it not to sound clever, have people think “this person is unoriginal”, everyone rolls their eyes, groan and you just killed a fun situation.
We all know the “this one goes to eleven” speech, “don’t call me Shirley“, “two dollars!” and “Vegas baby“. I’m not hoping that quoting movies will go away, I just wish people would be a bit more discriminatory towards using those quotes. It’s not as amusing as when we first heard the line from Bill Murray 20 years ago. If you have to say it, say it and move on. And don’t expect any applause.