Apart from silent films and porn (still) the art of dialogue is extremely important in films. It gives an incredible dimension to the story and it allows the actors to also release improvised cult lines. But where it gets really amazing is in some super well-written monologue scenes where the actors really show their talent (and their knowledge of the text).
1. “Blade Runner”: and the monologue of tears in the rain
Not only is this scene incredible and has remained in posterity, but Rutger Hauer also improvised most of his text. He only had a few words and phrases and he started stitching around. At the end of the take everyone applauded on set and some people had tears in their eyes.
2. “Will Hunting” and the incredible Robin Williams
Quite simply, one of the best monologues in history, the one where Robin Williams ends up telling his four truths to Matt Damon who, it must be admitted, is a bit of a pain in the ass. And in the end it works, by being a little harsh and borderline insulting it manages to motivate him, which I advise you to do with your child.
3. “Doubts” and the eight minutes of Viola Davis
She is so little present in the film that she enters the list of memorable roles with only a few minutes on screen. And at the same time his role (and especially his monologue) is simply memorable, I advise you more this film than watching this lump in your ass.
4. “Pulp Fiction”: Samuel L. Jackson’s biblical line
Reciting a biblical verse with so much class should already be saluted because few priests can boast of it, but before that we have the right to see the actor questioning a poor man with the famous phrase “what does Marcellus Wallace look like and it’s an absolutely brilliant scene.
5. “Apocalypse now” and Marlon Brando’s monologue
The dreadful Colonel Kurtz played by a returning Marlon Brando has been remembered in the list of cult movie characters. And we owe this fame in part to this scene where the actor is objectively very good when he starts talking and we understand that he has completely plunged into madness. And then this skull is so shiny it looks like oil has been smeared on it.
6. “No country for old men” and the Tommy Lee Jones dream scene
At the very end of the film Tommy Lee Jones sits down in front of the camera and recounts a dream he had the night before. A rather gripping, foggy, contemplative and above all extremely well-acted scene that sticks in your mind because it ends the film in such an abrupt way as a wedding that ends up in the emergency room because the groom has pulled up his fly too quickly when leaving the toilet.
7. “Braveheart”: the monologue for freedom
Remember, William Wallace (Mel Gibson) does his famous incredible monologue to unify the clans against the aggressor and it’s epic, chivalrous and full of muscle men showing their asses to the oppressor. Asses, a monologue and horses, it does not take more to make a cult scene.
8. “The Escapees” and Morgan Freeman’s monologue
Before the conclusion of the film that I will refrain from telling you, Morgan Freeman returns to his role as narrator to deliver a final touching, striking and moving monologue. So yes it’s voiceover and you’re going to nitpick but damn, it’s Morgan Freeman’s voice so frankly it counts.
9. “Precious” and Mo’Nique’s monologue
If you have seen the movie precious it is impossible that you have forgotten it, since it is super striking. In the role of an infamous mother for which she won an Oscar, Mo’Nique delivers a powerful and horrifying monologue where she explains why she hates her daughter. Considering how violent the scene is morally it should not be easy to swing a line like that.
10. “The Odyssey of Pi”: the ending monologue
When adult Pi Patel played by the late Irfan Khan explains to the journalist to whom he has just told his story the true version of it, the film takes on a whole new meaning. The text is hard, and as he tells it, we go through the whole film again, understanding the true meaning. I just cried thinking about it.
11. Exception 1: the monologue from the “Sherlock” series
In a word: incredible. We put this scene of series in this top so much it is phew, Benedict Cumberbatch tries to understand and solve the case after having witnessed something supernatural. He is lost, confused, disturbed and the whole scene is brilliantly acted out by the actor.
12. Exception 2: the monologue in the series “The night of”
Another series scene and therefore no cinema but who cares, John Turturro is absolutely masterful in this pleading scene where he tries to defend his client in front of the jury. If you haven’t seen the series don’t watch this scene but go watch all the episodes right away, it’s obviously one of the best miniseries it’s so incredible.