Special Report

Greatest Movie Quotes of All Time

You want the truth? You can’t handle the truth! Okay, maybe you can handle the truth, which is that no movie is complete without memorable dialogue and a handful of signature quotes. Not only do these quotes bring characters to life and help drive the story, but they expand upon the film’s legacy in the cultural sphere. 

Indeed, what better way to share your favorite movie moments than by regurgitating them with your best inflection? It lends a whole new meaning to the term “word of mouth.” (The small screen provides plenty of fodder for this practice, too. Check out these Check out these classic TV quotes that are now part of everyday vocabulary).

Meanwhile, some films feature so much more than just one terrific quote. Take “Casablanca,” for example, which seems to dispense with an iconic line in nearly every other scene. Movies such as “Jerry Maguire” and “The Godfather” perform a similar feat, dropping so much memorable dialogue that the entire script practically reads like a list of cultural catchphrases. (More of a music type? Here are the 50 greatest songs from movies). 

To assemble a ranking of the 50 greatest movie quotes of all time, 24/7 Tempo reviewed the American Film Institute’s “100 Years…100 Movie Quotes.” The AFI compiled their list by soliciting favorite movie lines from a jury of more than 1,500 film artists, critics, and historians, who were asked to nominate “quotes from American films which circulate through popular culture, become part of the national lexicon and evoke the memory of a treasured film, thus ensuring and enlivening its historical legacy.”

Click here to see the greatest movie quotes of all time

We’ve built the list here and you have come. Yeah, we’re talking to you. And if you disagree with the selections, well, nobody’s perfect. Can you guess which quote took the top spot? Rather than go ahead and make your day, we’ll keep you in suspense. Just remember that life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get.