Multiple Characters quotes

Porter: [referring to insurance] They wouldn't ever sell me any. They said I had something loose in my heart.

Lola Dietrichson: I caught her eyes in a mirror. They had that look in them they had before my mother died. That same look...I loathe her. Because she did it. She did it for the money. Although you're not going to pay it, are you, Mr. Neff? She is not going to get away with it this time, because I'm going to speak up. I'm going to tell everything I know.

Stanwyck and MacMurray. Phyllis: Mr. Neff, why don't you drop by tomorrow evening about eight-thirty. He'll be in then.
Walter Neff: Who?
Phyllis: My husband. You were anxious to talk to him weren't you?
Walter Neff: Yeah, I was, but I'm sort of getting over the idea, if you know what I mean.
Phyllis: There's a speed limit in this state, Mr. Neff. Forty-five miles an hour.
Walter Neff: How fast was I going, officer?
Phyllis: I'd say around ninety.
Walter Neff: Suppose you get down off your motorcycle and give me a ticket.
Phyllis: Suppose I let you off with a warning this time.
Walter Neff: Suppose it doesn't take.
Phyllis: Suppose I have to whack you over the knuckles.
Walter Neff: Suppose I bust out crying and put my head on your shoulder.
Phyllis: Suppose you try putting it on my husband's shoulder.
Walter Neff: That tears it. [He takes his hat and briefcase after his advances are coldly rebuffed.] 8:30 tomorrow evening, then.
Phyllis: That's what I suggested.
Walter Neff: You'll be here too?
Phyllis: I guess so, I usually am.
Walter Neff: Same chair, same perfume, same anklet?
Phyllis: I wonder if I know what you mean.
Walter Neff: I wonder if you wonder.

Phyllis: I'm a native Californian. Born right here in Los Angeles.
Walter Neff: They say all native Californians come from Iowa.

Keyes: Every month, hundreds of claims come to this desk. Some of them are phonies. And I know which ones. How do I know? Because my little man tells me.
Garlopis: What little man?
Keyes: The little man in here. Every time one of these phonies comes along, it ties knots in my stomach. I can't eat.

Keyes: What kind of an outfit is this, anyway? Are we an insurance company or just a bunch of dim-witted amateurs to write a policy on a mug like that?
Neff: Now wait a minute, Keyes. I don't rate this beef. I clipped a note to that Garlopis application to have him thoroughly investigated before we accepted the risk.
Keyes: I know you did, Walter. I'm not beefing at you. It's the company. It's the way they do things. The way they don't do things. The way they'll write anything just to get it down on the sales sheet. And I'm the guy that has to sit here up to my neck in phony claims so they won't throw more money out the window than they take in at the door.
Neff: Okay, turn the record over and let's hear the other side.
Keyes: Well, I get darn sick of tryin' to pick up after a gang of fast-talking salesmen dumb enough to sell life insurance to a guy who sleeps in the same bed with four rattlesnakes. Walter, I've had twenty-six years of this and let me tell ya, I -
Neff: And you loved every minute of it, Keyes. You love it, only you worry about it too darn much, you and your little man.
Barton Keyes: Now that's enough out of you, Walter. Now get outta here before I throw my desk at you. [looks in his pocket for a match]
Walter Neff: [takes a match of his own and lights Keyes' cigar] I love you, too.
Walter Neff: [voiceover]I really did, too, you old crab. Always yelling your head off, always sore at everybody. You never fooled me with your song and dance, not for a second. I kinda always knew that behind all the cigar ashes on your vest was a heart as big as a house.

Barton Keyes: Have you made up your mind?
Jackson: Mr. Keyes, I'm a Medford man - Medford, Oregon. Up in Medford, we take our time making up our minds.
Barton Keyes: Well, we're not in Medford, we're in a hurry.

Phyllis: I was just fixing some ice tea; would you like a glass?
Walter Neff: Yeah, unless you got a bottle of beer that's not working.

Phyllis: He's got me worried sick.
Walter: You mean, some dark night a crown block might fall on him -
Phyllis: Please don't talk like that.
Walter: But that's the idea.
Phyllis: The other day, a casing line snapped and caught the foreman. He's in the hospital with a broken back.
Walter: That's bad.
Phyllis: It's got me jittery just thinking about it. Suppose something like that happened to my husband.
Walter: It could.
Phyllis: Well, don't you think he ought to have accident insurance?
Walter: Hmm, mmm.
Phyllis: What kind of insurance could he have?
Walter: Oh, enough to cover doctors and hospital bills, say a hundred and twenty-five a week cash benefit, and you rate around a fifty thousand capital sum.
Phyllis: Capital sum, what's that?
Walter: In case he gets killed. Maybe I shouldn't have said that.
Phyllis: I suppose you have to think of everything in your business.
Walter: Well, your husband would understand. I'm sure I could sell him on the idea of some accident protection. Why don't you talk to him about it?
Phyllis: You could try, but he's pretty tough going.
Walter: Oh, they're all tough at first.

Phyllis: He has a lot on his mind. He doesn't seem to want to listen to anything except maybe a baseball game on the radio. Sometimes we sit here all evening and never say a word to each other.
Walter: Sounds pretty dull.
Phyllis: So I just sit and knit.
Walter: Is that what you married him for?
Phyllis: Maybe I like the way his thumbs hold up the wool.
Walter: Anytime his thumbs get tired. Only with me around, you wouldn't have to knit.
Phyllis: Wouldn't I?
Walter: You bet your life you wouldn't. [He sips from his iced tea glass] I wonder if a little rum would get this up on its feet.

Phyllis: You see what I mean, Walter?
Walter: Sure. I've got good eyesight. You mean you want him to have the policy without him knowing it. And that means without the insurance company knowing that he doesn't know it. That's the setup, isn't it?
Phyllis: Is there anything wrong with it?
Walter: No, I think it's lovely. Then, if some dark wet night, that crown block did fall on him -
Phyllis: What crown block?
Walter: Only sometimes it can't quite make it on its own. It has to have a little help.
Phyllis: I don't know what you're talking about.
Walter: Of course, it doesn't have to be a crown block. It can be a car backing over him, or he could fall out of the upstairs window. Any little thing like that, just so it's a morgue job.
Phyllis: Are you crazy?
Walter: Not that crazy. Good-bye, Mrs. Dietrichson.

Walter: Look, baby. You can't get away with it. You want to knock him off, don't ya?
Phyllis: That's a horrible thing to say.
Walter: Whaddya think I was anyway? A guy that walks into a good-looking dame's front parlor and says, 'Good afternoon. I sell accident insurance on husbands. Have you got one that's been around too long? One you'd like to turn into a little hard cash? Just give me a smile and I'll help you collect?' Huh! Boy, what a dope you must think I am!
Phyllis: I think you're rotten.
Walter: I think you're swell. So long as I'm not your husband.
Phyllis: Get out of here.
Walter: You bet I'll get out of here, baby. I'll get out of here but quick.

Phyllis: When she died, he was terribly broken up. I-I pitied him so.
Neff: And now you hate him.
Phyllis: Yes, Walter. He's so mean to me. Every time I buy a dress or a pair of shoes, he yells his head off. He never lets me go anywhere. He keeps me shut up. He's always been mean to me. Even his life insurance all goes to that daughter of his. That Lola.
Walter: Nothing for you at all, huh?
Phyllis: No, and nothing is just what I'm worth to him.
Walter: So you lie awake in the dark and listen to him snore and get ideas.
Phyllis: Walter, I don't want to kill him. I never did. Not even when he gets drunk and slaps my face.
Walter: Only sometimes you wish he was dead.
Phyllis: Perhaps I do.
Walter: And you wish it was an accident and you had that policy for $50,000 dollars. Is that it?
Phyllis: Perhaps that too.

Phyllis: I hate him. I loathe going back to him. You believe me, don't you, Walter?
Walter: Sure I believe you. [They kiss]
Phyllis: I can't stand it anymore. What if they did hang me?
Walter: They're not going to hang you, baby.
Phyllis: It's better than going on this way.
Walter: They're not gonna hang you because you're gonna do it and I'm gonna help you.
Phyllis: Do you know what you're saying?
Walter: Sure I know what I'm saying. We're gonna do it and we're gonna do it right. And I'm the guy that knows how.
...
Walter: There's not going to be any slip up. Nothing sloppy, nothing weak, it's got to be perfect. [They kiss each other and then he leads her toward the door.] Call me tomorrow. But not from your house. From a booth. And watch your step every single minute. This has got to be perfect, do ya understand? Straight down the line.
Phyllis: Straight down the line.

[Norton, Keyes's boss, has just tried, unsuccessfully, to convince a client that her husband's death was a suicide]
Barton Keyes: You know, you, uh, oughta take a look at the statistics on suicide some time. You might learn a little something about the insurance business.
Edward S. Norton: Mister Keyes, I was RAISED in the insurance business.
Barton Keyes: Yeah, in the front office. Come now, you've never read an actuarial table in your life, have you? Why they've got ten volumes on suicide alone. Suicide by race, by color, by occupation, by sex, by seasons of the year, by time of day. Suicide, how committed: by poison, by firearms, by drowning, by leaps. Suicide by poison, subdivided by TYPES of poison, such as corrosive, irritant, systemic, gaseous, narcotic, alkaloid, protein, and so forth. Suicide by leaps, subdivided by leaps from high places, under the wheels of trains, under the wheels of trucks, under the feet of horses, from STEAMBOATS. But, Mr. Norton: Of all the cases on record, there's not one single case of suicide by leap from the rear end of a moving train. And you know how fast that train was going at the point where the body was found? Fifteen miles an hour. Now how can anybody jump off a slow-moving train like that with any kind of expectation that he would kill himself? No, no soap, Mr. Norton. We're sunk, and we'll have to pay through the nose, and you know it.

Walter: Afraid, baby?
Phyllis: Yes, I'm afraid. But not of Keyes. I'm afraid of us. We're not the same anymore. We did it so we could be together but instead of that, it's pulling us apart, isn't it, Walter?
Walter: What are you talking about?
Phyllis: And you don't really care whether we see each other or not.
Walter: [kissing her] Shut up, baby.

Phyllis: [referring to Lola] She's putting on an act for you, crying all over your shoulder, that lying...
Walter: Keep her out of this. All I'm telling you is, we're not going to sue.
Phyllis: Because you don't want the money any more even if you could have it, because she's made you feel like a heel all of a sudden?
Walter: It isn't the money any more. It's our necks. We're pulling out. Do you understand?
Phyllis: Because of what Keyes can do? You're not fooling me, Walter. It's because of Lola. What you did to her father. You're afraid she might find out someday and you can't take it, can you?
Walter: I said, 'Leave her out of this.'
Phyllis: It's me I'm talking about. I don't want to be left out of it.
Walter: Stop saying that. It's just that it hasn't worked out as we wanted. We can't go through with it, that's all.
Phyllis: We have gone through with it, Walter. The tough part is all behind us. We just have to hold on now and not go soft inside. Stick close together the way we started out...I loved you, Walter, and I hated him. But I wasn't going to do anything about it. Not until I met you. You planned the whole thing. I only wanted him dead.
Walter: And I'm the one that fixed it so he was dead. Is that what you're telling me?
Phyllis: And nobody's pulling out. We went into this together and we're coming out at the end together. It's straight down the line for both of us. Remember?
Walter: [voiceover] Yes, I remembered. Just like I remembered what you had told me, Keyes. About that trolley car ride and how there was no getting off until the end of the line where the cemetery was. And then I got to thinking what cemeteries are for. They're to put dead people in. I guess that was the first time I ever thought about Phyllis that way. Dead, I mean. And how it would be if she were dead.

Phyllis: We're both rotten.
Walter Neff: Only you're a little more rotten.

[Phyllis shoots Walter in the shoulder]
Walter: You can do better than that, can't you, baby? You'd better try it again. Maybe if I came a little closer? How's this? Think you can do it now?
[She is incapable of firing a second shot and lowers her gun, trembling. Quietly, he takes the gun out of her unresistant hand.]
Walter: Why didn't you shoot again, baby? Don't tell me it's because you've been in love with me all this time.
Phyllis: '[[crying] No, I never loved you, Walter, not you or anybody else. I'm rotten to the heart. I used you just as you said. That's all you ever meant to me. Until a minute ago, when I couldn't fire that second shot. I never thought that could happen to me.
Walter: Sorry, baby, I'm not buying.
Phyllis: I'm not asking you to buy. Just hold me close.
[She puts her arms around him in. Then she draws slightly back in surprise and fear, realizing the barrel of his gun is against her chest.]
Walter: Good-bye baby.

Walter Neff: Know why you couldn't figure this one, Keyes? I'll tell ya. 'Cause the guy you were looking for was too close. Right across the desk from ya.
Barton Keyes: Closer than that, Walter.
Walter Neff: I love you, too.

  »   More Quotes from
  »   Back to the